The Weber Cup, named after bowling legend Dick Weber, is the Ten-pin bowling equivalent of Golf's Ryder Cup. It consists of two teams, Team Europe and Team USA competing over three days in a series of singles, doubles and team (baker) matches.
The Weber Cup is the annual Europe vs USA ten-pin bowling championships and is currently broadcast live from start to finish on Sky Sports in the UK and in many other international channels around the world. It usually takes place in October every year.
For the first 7 events, from 2000 to 2006, 35 matches were played. Each match worth 1 point. The first team to 18 points won the tournament.
From 2007, the tournament was reduced slightly to 33 matches, again each match is worth 1 point so the first team to 17 will win.
All matches are played in a single lane arena, with banked spectators on both sides, which is specially constructed for the event.
In 2003, missing their inspirational captain Tim Mack, and up against some vociferous northern support, Team USA were never in contention as the Europeans went into the lead early on day one and never relinquished it.
After three barren years of total United States domination, Team Europe finally overcame the odds in November 2003 to lift the hallowed Weber Cup for the first time. It was a total triumph for captain Tomas Leandersson, who led from the front for all three days, putting in a sterling performance that saw his side over the line.
Following on from Europe’s recent success in golf’s Ryder Cup earlier in the year, it was the tenpin bowlers’ turn as they defeated their American counterparts in what was ultimately a one-sided battle at the Altrincham Leisure Centre.
The final score line of 18–11 was a fair reflection as Team Europe pulled away on the final day after the Americans kept them pinned back to a one point lead at 11–10 after two days of play.
In 2005, the Europeans staged a dramatic comeback after falling 14-16 behind. In front of a packed audience and live TV cameras, they won the first 4 singles games in the final session of play and took the title for the 3rd successive year, 18-16. As in the previous year, Team Europe Captain, Tomas Leandersson won the decisive point with a win over Team USAs Tony Manna Jr.
After the first days play, Team USA led 4-2 and Europe's Paul Moor bowled the first perfect game in the Weber Cup to start the competition against Jason Couch. The only other European win in the first session came from Tomas Leandersson against Chris Barnes. Tommy Jones defeated Mika Koivuniemi, Tim Mack beat Tore Torgersen, Bill Hoffman triumphed over Jens Nickel and the Baker system game was won by Team USA.
After day two Team USA led with what looked like an unassailable 12-6 lead. Europe took the final days first session 5-0 to get back into contention at 11-12, before leading 14-13 going into the final evening session.
Both teams were tied 17-17 going into the final decisive baker system game - at one point Team Europe led by over 30 pins, with Mack and Hoffman failing to strike. The game became close (11 pins) and then in the 9th frame Tore Torgersen left an extremely difficult split. Despite a fantastic attempt one pin remained standing giving Tommy Jones the opportunity to step up and seal the victory for the Americans, and he duly obliged.
The 2007 Weber Cup, was again a close affair, with Team USA running out eventual winners 17-15, coming back from 14-10 before the start of the final session.
On Day 1, in the 5th match, Tommy Jones rolled the 2nd ever perfect game in the tournament's history, against Team Europe captain Tomas Leandersson, and at close of play on day one, the scores were tied at 4 matches apiece.
Day 2 was a day for the Americans, who won the session 4-2 to take a 7-5 lead. Consolation for Team Europe came with the final Baker match, which they duly won. In the evening session, Team Europe fought back, to bring the scores back level at 9-9, again winning the final Baker match.
Team Europe started day 3 in blistering from, winning 5 of the 6 matches to take what looked like an unassailable 14-10 lead going into the final evening session, however Team USA had other ideas, and won 7 of the 8 games in the final session, with only Paul Moor for Team Europe winning his singles match against Team USA's captain Tim Mack.
This win extended Team USA's overall lead to 5-3 in the series.
The 2008 Weber Cup will take place once again at the Barnsley Metrodome, from the 3rd to the 5th of October 2008.
The overall score currently stands at 5-3 in favour of Team USA, so the Europeans will be hoping for a win to prevent the gap extending further. Team USA will be looking to make it 3 wins on the trot once more, as they did in the first 3 tournaments.
Torgersen is joined by Paul Moor (England), playing in his 4th Weber Cup. Finland’s Mika Koivuniemi and Osku Palermaa also return, and making his debut in the competition is Dominic Barrett from England.
Team USA will feature 4 stars of the PBA tour, with Chris Barnes, Tommy Jones and Jason Couch returning for more Weber Cup action. They will be joined by Pete Weber, making his first appearance in the tournament which is named after his father, Dick Weber.
Team Europe (captain TBA)
|2003||Greater Manchester, England||Europe||18||USA||14|
|2004||Greater Manchester, England||Europe||18||USA||11|