GENERAL SANTOS CITY - Efren ‘Bata’ Reyes defied Father Time after edging out Demosthenes Pulpul in the finals, 11-10, to win the MP (Manny Pacquiao) Cup Philippine Open 10-Ball tilt Friday night at the SM City mall here.
The legendary pool icon pocketed the top purse worth $13,000 at stake in the $150,000 event bankrolled by no less than the 35-year-old Pacquiao.
“Nagpapasalamat talaga ako sa suporta ni Congressman Pacquiao sa sports dahil hindi na kami kailangang mangibang-bansa para lumaban," said Reyes, who teamed up with bosom buddy Francisco ‘Django’ Bustamante at the start of the doubles elimination Saturday.
Reyes made the finals by disposing journeyman Benjie Guevarra in the semifinals, 9-6.
Along the way, he dispatched one by one the likes of Jerome Adolfo, Horace Angor, American Rodney Morris, Bustamante, John Morra of Canada and Oliver Medenilla.
Reyes finished the tournament unbeaten.
Pulpul earned the right to meet Reyes for the title by virtue of a rules infraction committed by world No. 7 Carlo Biado in their semifinals match.
By sheer excitement, Biado did not call his final shot and committed a foul, allowing Pulpul, a native of Cagayan de Oro, to escape with the win.
Pulpul was also the recipient of a similar rules infraction in his Round-of-32 match against Roberto Gomez, who also forgot to declare the pocket where the "10" ball would be sank.