There was a joy for Hungary in the third session of Day 1 of the 2023 European Seniors individual Championships in Albena (Bulgaria). In a tense match, in which all but one frame was decided on the colors, Balazs Csurgo beat Janne Hakkinen (Finland) 3:2 to join John Farrell (Ireland) atop Group M.
The 48-year old Hungarian has already twice reached the knockout stages of the Championship and has won at least one match every time he played the event, opened the score with a frame, clinched on the black.
Hakkinen, back at the European Championships after a 12-year absence, countered with a couple of good contributions and after falling 2:1 behind won the lengthy exchange on the brown in the fourth to force a decider.
However, the Finn broke down early in the fifth and had to watch helplessly as Csurgo cleared the table in the fifth.
There were a couple of wins for Malta in the afternoon session as Philip Cianter beat home favorite Borislav Lazarkov 3:0 while Arthur Cachia dispatched by the same score Austrian Michael Peyr.