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Bowling News USA - July 29, 2012 Osku Palermaa Over Barrett for EBT Title

In a match between two Storm International staffers, three-time titlist Osku Palermaa of Finland defeated one-time titlist Dominic Barrett of England to win the 34th Trofeu Internacional Ciutat de Barcelona and the 12.000 Euro top prize Sunday at Bowling Pedralbes in Barcelona, Spain. 

The stepladder finals were broadcasted live on Eurosport 2. It was the 13th victory on the European Bowling Tour for the four-time EBT point ranking champion (2007-09, 2011), who is the all-time title leader in the 13-year history of the Tour. 

Gery Verbruggen of Belgium, who led the tour ranking in the first four years (2000-03), and Paul Moor of England, who led the ranking in the following three years (2004-06), are tied for second place with 11 titles. Barrett, who has six EBT titles under his belt, is the only other ranking winner (2010). 

Palermaa, who overtook Barrett in the final game of the Round of 24, bowled a clean game in the title match. The two-hander struck seven times and converted four single-pin spares, while Barrett suffered two open frames after starting with a spare and a four-bagger. 

With the second place finish, worth 6.000 Euro, the Englishman, who finished fourth in San Marino last week, overtook the lead in the European Bowling Tour men's point ranking. Previous leader Mike Fagan, United States, slipped to second place with defending ranking champion Palermaa in third, Fagan and Palermaa are the only multiple EBT champions this season, while Barrett is seeking for his first EBT title in 2012. 

In the opening match of the stepladder finals, Barrett closed out with six consecutive strikes to defeat Ildemaro Ruiz of Venezuela (right), 235-202. Ruiz, who mad three TV shows during the 2011 PBA World Series of Bowling, received 3.000 Euro for third place. 

Two-time European champion Rebecka Larsen of Sweden was the sole woman, who made the cut to the top 24. The Swede finished in sixth place to win the women's ranking in Barcelona. 

The 34th Trofeu Internacional Ciutat de Barcelona drew only 126 players, almost 25 per cent less than last year (167).Despite offering a wealth of advantages for women (besides eight pins handicap each game, a standard for women on the European Bowling Tour, six women below the cut line earned automatic spots in the finals and the top 8 female qualifiers received an additional prize money of total 5.000 Euro), only 24 women participated, 36 less than last year. 

The European Bowling Tour takes a six-week break in part due to the Men's European Championships, which will be held from August 16-26 at Plus Bowling in Vienna, Austria. 

The 13th event of the 2012 EBT, the BNC Open, will be held at BNC Bowling Center in Bratislava, Slovakia from Sept. 3-9. The BNC Open is the sixth out of eight EBT "silver" events and offers total prize fund of 42.000 Euro with 6.000 going to the winner. Dominic Barrett is the defending champion.

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