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2023 PBA Skill Ball Challenge Best Bets, Expert Picks & Predictions For This Weekend

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2023 PBA Skill Ball Challenge Best Bets, Expert Picks & Predictions For This Weekend

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The top eight players in points from the five 2023 PBA Classic Events (PBA Springfield Classic, PBA Shawnee Classic, PBA Wichita Classic, PBA Jackson Classic, PBA Kokomo Classic) will converge on Thunderbowl Lanes in Allen Park, Michigan to compete in the season’s most unique tournament. You can get in on the action via the best best betting apps.

The tournament bracket will match up E.J. Tackett (-175) vs. Matthew Ogle (+130), Sam Cooley (-167) vs. Sean Lavery-Spahr (+125), Tommy Jones (+108) vs. Jakob Butturff (-143), and Dom Barrett (+118) vs. Packy Hanrahan (-157) in the first round. 

Play begins at 7:00 PM ET on Sunday with each match being a race to two wins. In the event a game ends in a tie, the tie will be broken by a one-ball sudden-death roll-off on the 10th frame lane, and if the match reaches a 1-1 tie, the tie will be broken by a 9th & 10th frame roll-off rather than bowling a third game.

2023 PBA Skills Challenge Winner Odds

EJ Tackett+300
Patrick Hanrahan+400
Jakob Butturff+450
Sam Cooley+550
Dom Barrett+600
Tommy Jones+600
Sean Lavery-Spahr+900
Matthew Ogle+1100

Odds via BetRivers and current as of publication. 

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PBA Skills Challenge Betting Tips

Sunday’s competition is unusual in that every bowler has been issued the PBA Skill 3.02 bowling ball, which they will be required to use throughout the tournament. 

The PBA SKILL 3.02 is a non-flaring pearl urethane ball with a differential of 0.010” and hardness of 80-82D. The cover of the ball is harder, and the radius of gyration and differential are weaker than what most players typically use on tour. 

Players will be challenged further by dual, low-volume oil patterns – one long (46 feet) and one short (34 feet).

The less reactive bowling ball is likely to give the advantage to the players with the highest rev rates. The players who have the most experience using weaker core/cover balls should also have a winning edge. 

2023 PBA Skill Ball Challenge Best Bets

EJ Tackett over Matthew Ogle

Odds: +-175 at BetRivers

Tackett has earned his position as the overall tournament favorite. He finished as the points leader for both the PBA Tour Finals qualifying and the Classic Series. And if it wasn’t for a missed ten pin in the Tour Finals last month he likely would have won that title. 

However, the PBA Skill 3.02 bowling ball presents a new challenge. Speed control will be a huge factor, and while an elite player like EJ has a chance under any conditions, the weaker ball could limit his upside. 

I’ll take Tackett to advance past Ogle but not to win it all.

Packy Hanrahan over Dom Barrett

Odds: -157 at BetRivers

Both Hanrahan and Barrett have had strong seasons, joining Tackett in the top seven of both points leaderboards. However, Hanrahan gets the edge here. 

As a lefty two-hander who successfully navigated through the season mostly using urethane, Packy should be in his comfort zone with the PBA Skill ball.

Jakob Butturff to Win

Odds: -+450 at BetRivers

If the formula for winning this tournament is having a ridiculous rev rate and loads of experience using weaker bowling balls then Butturff has to be the pick. Besides those factors, his resume speaks for itself. 

He has established himself as one of the top few players on tour with the third-best scoring average (223.92) and fourth-most total points (20,450) and earnings ($162,050) in 2023, proving that he can handle the most pressure-packed moments.

2023 PBA Skill Ball Challenge, Date and TV

  • Sunday, July 23rd, 7:00 PM EDT Livestreaming on BowlTV

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