Malaysia's Sin leads PWBA Bowlers Journal Rockford Open after Day 1

ROCKFORD, Ill. – Sin Li Jane of Malaysia made her return to the Professional Women’s Bowling Association Tour known today, averaging over 218 through two rounds of qualifying at the PWBA Bowlers Journal Rockford Open being contested at The Cherry Bowl in Rockford, Illinois.

Sin had a 12-game total of 2,625 to hold the top spot, using her first six games (1,412 total) to catapult her into the lead and hold steady through the second set. Ukraine’s Dasha Kovalova and 2022 Rockford Open champion Stefanie Johnson of McKinney, Texas, are in a tie for second with 2,623. Kerry Smith of Lititz, Pennsylvania (2,607) and Singapore’s Hui Fen New (2,601) round out the top five, respectively. 

The top 25 today move on to tomorrow’s third round of qualifying, with Kayla Bandy of Wichita, Kansas, taking the final spot with a 12-game total 2,478.

Sin returned to the PWBA Tour this season after taking a three-season hiatus, but kept up with her training in Malaysia as a member of their national team in preparation to return.

“It was one of my goals to be back last year, but we had some major championships back in Malaysia,” Sin said. “It feels good to be back on the tour.”

Sin hopes to continue her excellent bowling tomorrow and make a run for her second career PWBA title.

“I just have to keep it simple, enjoy my game and hopefully the best result will happen,” said Sin.

Kovalova has a similar approach heading into the third round of qualifying, wanting to keep herself grounded and not get too ahead of herself.

“I tend to freak out and overthink things, so I’m keeping things to just one thought at a time and focusing on my pre-shot routine,” said Kovalova.

She credits her versatility as a bowler to stay consistent week-to-week, as last week’s event in Eagan, Minnesota, was on a shorter oil condition while Rockford is on a 44-foot oil pattern.

“I’ve learned different hand positions and speed control, you have to be able to adapt to whatever conditions are out there to succeed.”

Sin, Kovalova and the rest of the top 25 return to The Cherry Bowl Saturday at 10 a.m. Eastern for their third six-game qualifying round before a final cut to the top 12. Those 12 will bowl a fourth and final six-game block to determine the five stepladder finalists, which begins Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. Eastern.