Firestone Tournament Of Champions
$200,000 FIRESTONE TOURNAMENT OF CHAMPIONS
Riviera Lanes, Akron, Ohio, Apr 20-24, 1982
Durbin Delivers Again In Firestone
For Mike Durbin, one Firestone Tournament of Champions victory was not enough. Ten years later he returned to do it again.
Quite a bit changed in the decade after Durbin's first Firestone win in 1972. Only 14 players eligible during Durbin's initial triumph were on hand for the 1982 event. Continuing technological changes in the sport brought about different bowling balls, lane finishes, pins and styles of play, including that of Durbin, who had long since altered his three-step approach used in rolling a 775 three-game TV finals series 10 years earlier.
Ted Hannahs and Steve Cook, Durbin's two victims in his latest Firestone triumph, were 15 years old the day he downed George Pappas, Larry Laub and Tim Harahan for the $25,000 top prize in the $125,000 event at Riviera Lanes.
His second win netted Durbin $40,000 out of a $200,000 prize fund.
The 40-year-old Durbin fired strikes on six of his first seven attempts against top-seeded Cook, building a 32-pin lead midway through the match before clinching the title with a strike in the 10th frame. The final score was 233-203.
Durbin earned his way into the championship game with a 215-176 win against Hannahs after Hannahs had prevailed over Earl Anthony, 235-193, and Dave Husted, 248-221.
Cook, bidding to become the first bowler to successfully defend his championship in the Firestone, ran away with the No. 1 spot by 240 pins. Unlike his 1981 victory in which he started the final game with 10 strikes, the 6-foot-7, 265-pound southpaw trailed instantly after a 4-6-10 split in the first frame against Durbin.
Along with his two victories, Durbin has placed in each of the other top six positions throughout the years in the annual battle of champions and has earned over $112,000 in the tournament since 1967.
"There's probably both a psychological and physical advantage for me in this tournament," said Durbin. "The lanes favor the way I throw the ball."
The win represented Durbin's 10th PBA title, another milestone he avidly sought. The 1972 victory was his fifth tour title.
Second-place Cook earned $22,000 as well as another $1,500 in squad prizes. Third-place finisher Hannahs and fourth-place Husted were rookies to the T of C while Anthony, who finished fifth, was seeking an unprecedented third Firestone trophy.
Now Durbin can join in that quest.
PLAYOFF RESULTS - Hannahs defeated Anthony, 235-193; Hannahs defeated Husted, 248-221; Durbin defeated Hannahs, 215-176; and in the championship match, Durbin defeated Cook, 233-203. 48-GAME TOTALS OTHER CASHERS * - Match play alternate. ** - TV finals alternate. 24-game qualifying leader - Cook, 5439. 24th place - Pete Weber, 4907. PRO-AM CASHERS - Alvin Lou, Mike Aulby, Marshall Holman, Dave Davis, Mark Roth and Pete Couture ($50 each).
* - Match play alternate. ** - TV finals alternate. 24-game qualifying leader - Cook, 5439. 24th place - Pete Weber, 4907. PRO-AM CASHERS - Alvin Lou, Mike Aulby, Marshall Holman, Dave Davis, Mark Roth and Pete Couture ($50 each).