GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX’s ESPN Coverage Kicks Off Sunday with USA vs. The World Team Challenge

by Jerry Schneider  |  Wednesday, December 06, 8:26 AM

GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX’s ESPN Coverage Kicks Off Sunday with USA vs. The World Team Challenge

RENO, Nev. - The five leading American players and the five top international players in PBA World Championship qualifying during the GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX presented by Eldorado Resorts Reno Properties will face off in the second USA vs. The World team competition from the National Bowling Stadium on ESPN Sunday at 1 p.m. ET, kicking off ESPN’s coverage of the 2017-18 Go Bowling! PBA Tour.

The USA team, captained by PBA Hall of Famer and 22-time Tour champion Marshall Holman, includes PBA Tour champions Kyle Troup, Bill O’Neill, Ryan Ciminelli, Tom Smallwood and PBA regional winner Matt McNiel. Making up The World team, captained by England’s Stuart Williams, are PBA Tour international standouts Jason Belmonte of Australia, Jesper Svensson of Sweden, Dom Barrett of England, Thomas Larsen of Denmark and newcomer Rafiq Ismail of Malaysia.

In what could be considered the all-star event of WSOB IX, players earned their spots on their respective teams based on their finishing positions after a combined 40 games of qualifying in the PBA Chameleon Championship presented by Reno Tahoe, PBA Shark Championship presented by Xtra Frame, PBA Cheetah Championship presented by PBA Challenge Mobile Game and Pepsi PBA Scorpion Championship presented by

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The teams will compete in a best-of-two-game Baker format final with a sudden-death roll-off should the teams tie after two games.

The U.S. team will try to defend its title from WSOB VIII when the USA (Mitch Beasley, BJ Moore, Matt O’Grady, Dick Allen, EJ Tackett) beat The World (Sam Cooley, Barrett, Arturo Quintero, Francois Lavoie, Martin Larsen) in a one-frame roll-off after each team won one game.

WSOB IX continues with back-to-back telecasts on ESPN of the Chameleon Championship and Shark Championship Sunday, Dec. 17 beginning at 1 p.m. ET, followed by the Cheetah Championship and Scorpion Championship Dec. 24 at 1 p.m., PBA World Championship Dec. 31 at 1 p.m. and wrapping up with World Bowling Tour Men’s and Women’s finals presented by PBA Jan. 7 at 1 p.m.