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PBA Tournament of Champions Returns to Indianapolis After 51 Year Absence

After a 51-year absence, the PBA Tournament of Champions returns to its original roots in Indianapolis in 2013. Now at the midway point of the 2012-13 PBA Tour season, the tournament will take place at Woodland Bowl on the city’s north side on March 26-31. It’s a great opportunity to enjoy a snack and watch more than 50 of the best bowlers worldwide compete.

But this tournament hits home on more than one level: Ronnie Russell, an Indianapolis area native and recent winner of the Professional Bowlers Association Tour title in Munich, Germany, returns to Indy to compete in the PBA Tournament of Champions.

The Tournament kicks off with on Wednesday with eight-round qualifying squads. They will complete through three (3) eight-game, qualifying rounds, at which point, the top 24 players will advance to the round-robin match play. The top five players will make it to ESPN’s stepladder finals on Sunday at 2:30 p.m.  to compete for a $50,000 first prize.

Tournament of Champions History

The inaugural event took place in 1962 in Indianapolis and grand prize winner Joe Joseph of Lansing, Mich. Joseph took the first-place first prize of $15,000. From 1966 through 1996 the event took place at  in Fairlawn, Ohio, an Akron suburb. The first nationally-televised game took place 5 years later, in 1967. One of the all-time classic moments came in 1970, as Don Johnson defeated Dick Ritger, 299-268.

Hall of Fame Induction Ceremonies

The Tournament of Champions week will include the Hall of Fame induction ceremonies, which will take place at the Indianapolis Marriott North on Saturday at 7 p.m. Doug Kent of Newark, N.Y., and Danny Wiseman of Baltimore, will be become the PBA’s latest inductees.

PBA League Elias Cup Finals

Following the live TOC finals on Sunday, the PBA will hold its PBA League Elias Cup finals at 6 p.m. The four, highest scoring teams from the 5-round qualifying series that took place in Detroit in January will complete for a team prize worth $76,000 in the inaugural Elias Cup. ESPN will air the Elias Cup finals on Sunday, April 7, at 1 p.m. ET.

Event Info:

  • March 26-31
  • Location: Woodland Bowl, 3421 East 96th Street, Indianapolis
  • Tel. 317-844-4099
  • Website

Mike Woods