On the final tournament of 2023, held in Petrich, Bulgaria, with the hosting club BO&BO, 54 participants took part despite the organizational changes that ensued. The tournament was organized for the first time on Friday and Saturday to allow the management to organize a Gala Evening and an official award ceremony for the achievements of the participants in 2023. However, the tournament unfolded under great tension due to the final rankings.
The most prepared, however, turned out to be the participant from North Macedonia – Hristo Vasilevski, who won the gold in this tournament in a highly emotional final. Hristo prevailed over the representative of the hosting club, Sashko Dimitrov, with a score of 9:6. Despite the local support, Sashko couldn’t prevail over Hristo in the final. Another Bulgarian ascended to the honorable ranks, Stelian Kukuchev, who, in the Bulgarian semifinal, lost to Sashko Dimitrov with a dramatic score of 9:7, where Sashko led 8:2 and narrowly avoided a complete turnaround. The other bronze medal went to perhaps the most consistent participant from all four tournaments – Faton Baygora from Kosovo, who lost to Hristo Vasilevski with a score of 7:9. The remaining four participants who climbed the award podium are as follows – 4th place for Bedri Sijarina from Kosovo, who in a highly dynamic and contested quarterfinal lost to Stelian Kukuchev with the dramatic score of 8:9. In another dramatic quarterfinal, one of Bulgaria’s rising stars – Yoan Salambashev, lost to the silver medalist Sashko Dimitrov, also with a score of 8:9. Another participant from Bulgaria – Ivaylo Simeonov, failed to secure a medal and lost to Faton Baygora with a score of 6:9. In the last quarterfinal, the veteran from Kosovo, Valon Gashi, lost to the champion Hristo Vasilevski with a score of 4:9. Thus, after the last tournament of 2023, the final ranking of the top 5 participants looks as follows:

1st place for Labinot Markaj from Kosovo
2nd place for Hristo Vasilevski from North Macedonia
3rd place for Faton Baygora from Kosovo
4th place for Sashko Dimitrov from Bulgaria
5th place for Valon Gashi from Kosovo

We wish health to all participants and look forward to new battles on the billiard tables in 2024. The calendar for 2024, along with the internal regulations of BBA, will be released by the end of 2023. Until then!

The event concluded with an Official Gala Evening, dedicated to honoring the accomplishments of the year 2023. The following acknowledgments were made:

• Main Sponsor for 2023: Royal Pro – The revolution in billiard products

Partners of Balkan Billiard Association:
• Billiard Federation of North Macedonia, President Deyan Sipkovski
• Bulgarian National Billiard Federation, President Georgi Bozhkov
• Billiard Center Club Thessaloniki Greece, President Atanasios Lainas
• Billiard Federation of Kosovo, President Veton Dyla
• EPBF – for providing quotas for participation in the Dynamic Billiard Euro Tour Men, President Gre Leenders

Individual awards were presented as follows:
• Best Junior for 2023 season: Petar Tsanev from Bulgaria
• Best Veteran for 2023 season: Valon Gashi from Kosovo
• Best Team for the 2023 season: Kosovo

Additionally, recognition was given to the top performers for 2023:
1. Labinot Marai – Kosovo
2. Hristo Vasilevski – North Macedonia
3. Faton Bajgora – Kosovo
4. Sashko Dimitrov – Bulgaria
5. Valon Gashi – Kosovo

All tournament participants received official certificates for their involvement, followed by a festive segment featuring an evening toast and the sharing of positive emotions. Congratulations were extended to all, with best wishes for an even more successful and fruitful 2024. The BBA management expressed its commitment to continual improvement and the advancement of their projects.

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