The stepladder finals of the fifth and final major of the 2021 Guaranteed Rate PBA Tour season air live on FS1 April 11
Reno, Nev.—The U.S. Open, the final major championship on the 2021 Guaranteed Rate PBA Tour season, begins today from the National Bowling Stadium. Qualifying and match play will be streamed live on BowlTV and simulcast on FloBowling Apr. 6-10. The stepladder finals will air live on Fox Sports’ FS1 Sunday, Apr. 11 at 2 p.m. ET.
Here are some of the top storylines heading into the 2021 U.S. Open:
Last Chance to Qualify for PBA Super Slam
The PBA Super Slam, a special event taking place April 18 live on FOX Broadcast Channel and paying $100,000 to the winner, will feature the champions of all five majors. Kyle Troup (Players Championship), François Lavoie (Tournament of Champions), Tom Daugherty (World Championship) and Thomas Larsen (USBC Masters) have already secured their spots in the PBA Super Slam. The final berth will go to the winner of the U.S. Open. If one of the current Super Slam entrants wins the U.S. Open, the runner-up will receive the fifth spot in the Super Slam.
Defending Champion Looks to Complete Super Slam Twice
The individual Super Slam, in which a player wins all five major titles over the course of a career, has only been completed twice in PBA Tour history. When Jason Belmonte won the 2020 U.S. Open, he became the second player, after Mike Aulby, to do so. Since Belmonte has won each of the other four majors at least twice, another win in the U.S. Open would make Belmonte the first player ever to complete the Super Slam a second time. He would also be the first player to successfully defend the U.S. Open championship since Dave Husted won back-to-back titles in 1995 and 1996.
Lavoie Chases Third U.S. Open Title
2021 PBA Tournament of Champions winner François Lavoie won his first major title in the 2016 U.S. Open, rolling a 300 game against Shawn Maldonado in the semifinal match and then defeating Marshall Kent for the title. In 2019, Lavoie won his second U.S. Open title, defeating Sean Rash in the championship match. Now a three-time major champion, Lavoie will look to win the U.S. Open for the third time in six years.
Players Fight for PBA Playoffs Berths
The U.S. Open is the final opportunity for players vying for one of 16 berths in the 2021 PBA Playoffs, which begin Saturday, April 24 at 11 a.m. ET on FS1. Entering the U.S. Open, defending PBA Playoffs champion Bill O’Neill holds the 16th spot on the points list. The winner of the PBA Playoffs receives $100,000 and a custom WWE championship title belt.
U.S. Open Winners Since 2011
2011 – Norm Duke
2012 – Pete Weber
2013 – Wes Malott
2014 – not held
2015 – Ryan Ciminelli
2016 – François Lavoie
2017 – Rhino Page
2018 – Dom Barrett
2019 – François Lavoie
2020 – Jason Belmonte
About the PBA
The Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) is the world’s preeminent organization dedicated to the sport of bowling and its professional competition, with thousands of members and millions of fans throughout the world. The PBA plays host to bowling’s biggest tournaments from the PBA Tour, PBA Regional Tour, and PBA50 Tour. In 2020, the PBA launched PBA Jr., a club for elite youth bowlers under the age of 17 and the PBA Pinsiders, a membership for fans of the sport. For more information, please visit PBA.com.