After AJ Johnson seized final spot from James Blomgren at the PBA Cheetah Championship, Europeans had better luck at Scorpion - Finland's Santtu Tahvanainen and Sweden's Jesper Svensson made the Guaranteed Rate PBA World Series of Bowling XIV Scorpion Championship Finals. Still, they did not go all the way to the title.
Current Harry Golden PBA Rookie of the Year Sannttu Tahvanainen finished fourth, while Sweden's Jesper Svensson made his first appearance in the championship round this year and for the first time since the PBA Playoffs in 2022, finishing third.
Jesper Svensson won game one at the Scorpion Championship by defeating U.S. Anthony Simonsen in a high-scoring game with a final score of 248-225.
The next match pitted Svensson against Tahvanainen in a European duel. It was the first career singles telecast for Santtu Tahvanainen. Misfortunately, he could have performed better in the camera lights, as Svensson routed Tahvanainen, 228-186.
'It's definitely a good experience,' Tahvanainen said of his first career singles telecast. 'But at the same time, I hope this concludes my bad bowling, and tomorrow we can see my good bowling.'
With only two opponents left, separating Svensson from his first title since last year, he met probably the least desired rival this year - EJ Tackett - who won the PBA Cheetah Championship the day before to claim his eighth career title.
As if that wasn't enough, transition on the lanes began to appear.
'I knew (transition) was coming," Svensson said. 'I was just hoping that the look I had after wasn't as bad as it was.'
Unfortunately for Svensson, it was quite an unpleasant look indeed. The two-hander's look with urethane started to fade, leaving two buckets in the first four frames, and Swede's attempts to switch to a reactive bowling ball led to nasty splits.
Svensson did all he could, but all of his options failed. Ultimately, Tackett defeated him 184–158, not performing his best game either.
'If I would have known that EJ would've shot 180, I probably would've done what I did the first few frames (throwing urethane) and just tried to hit the pocket and make whatever spares are left,' Svensson said. 'But I figured that he's probably going to have a very good game, so I had to be aggressive.
In the title match, 28-year-old Jakob Butturff ended his near-four-year title drought, defeating EJ Tackett 225-217, and dedicated this victory to his late mother.
'It's my first Tour win since my mom passed away back in November 2020,' Butturff said. 'I know she was looking down on me and made sure I made my 7-pins in that match.'
After 60 qualification games on Cheetah, Scorpion, and Shark, two Europeans - Santtu Tahvanainen and Jesper Svensson - made it to the top 12 of the PBA WSOB XIV World Championship.
A PBA WSOB XIV World Championship winner will be awarded the season's fourth Major and a prize fund of $100,000.