Truth be told, it was an exciting see-saw battle for the championship between Reyes and Bustamante! And I kid you not! The 57-year-old pool master found himself trailing, 10-9, before taking the next two racks to score the coveted victory in the two-day event organized by none other than Senator Manny Villar for the benefit of more than a dozen children stricken cancer. Both Reyes and Bustamante play for Puyat Sports.
The win earned Reyes his second Villards title along with a cool Php300,000 in prize money. And for those not in the know, part of the cash goes to his partners-beneficiaries Jhon Kristopher Dequito, a 2-year-old cancer patient from Binangonan, Rizal, and 10-year-old Teresita Maribao of Potrero, Malabon, who is suffering from leukemia.
Reyes’ performance in the 2011 Manny Villar Cup saw a first-round win over Antonio Lining (9-8) of Negros Billiards Stable (NBS) and JSY Sports. He was then relegated to the losers’ bracket after a crushing 9-4 defeat in the hands of Jundel Mazon of NBS and JSY Sports. The Magician successfully secured a seat in semi-finals via wins over Rubilen Amit (9-2) and Warren Kiamco (9-5) of Puyat Sports and NBS and JSY Sports, respectively. Afterwards, it was a hotly-contested battle in the semis, where he flared against Asia’s Money Game King - Bugsy Promotions’ Dennis Orcollo!. An unforgettable 11-10 win over Orcollo catapulted Reyes to the finals!
Bustamante won four straight matches en-route to the hot seat and the Php120,000 runner-up prize. Tarlac’s favorite son scored wins over Renemar David (9-6), Roberto Gomez (9-3), Kiamco (9-6), and Carlo Biado (11-9).
Congratulations, Efren! Mabuhay!