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Bowling News USA - April 20, 2011 Belmonte wins Orange Audi Open

Jason Belmonte had to come back from a 38-pin deficit to take out the 2011 Orange Audi Open yesterday. Belmonte defended his 2010 title by beating good friend and Australia’s top ranked bowler George Frilingos yesterday.

The pair battled for the lead all weekend after Belmonte finished the first round on top by 12 pins. The event went down to the wire with Frilingos leading by 38 pins with two games to go.

Belmonte charged home to win by 54 pins, with Frilingos second and Michael Little third.

“At lunch time today he was leading and I told Kimberly (Belmonte’s wife), the way he’s bowling, I didn’t think I could catch him,” Belmonte said. “I saw him bowl a 300 and I thought the horse had bolted.”

Frilingos said he enjoyed bowling against his good mate and knew it would be tight. “I figured it was always going to be close. This is Jason’s home center,” Frilingos said. “I like to push myself and for me to be the best I need to play the best. To play Jason on his home turf was the ultimate test for me. I bowled really well. When I needed a strike, I struck. I bowled a perfect game and it was the first time I’ve done that at this center.”

Belmonte said he was thrilled to win at home in front of his family. “I’m happy. I never get to bowl with my family near me,” he said. Belmonte is only the third person in the Open’s 24-year history to win back-to-back titles.

Belmonte finished with a 24-game total of 5674 and a 236 average. Frilingos finished on 5620 with Little a further 305 pins behind on 5315. Belmonte and Frilingos make bets at each tournament and this was not a good one for Frilingos to lose.

When they line up this weekend at the Australian Open in Melbourne, Frilingos will be sporting a bad fake tan. “He has to be as orange as possible. I want him to look like an Oompa Loompa,” Belmonte laughed.

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April, 2011