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The Turnstile

Mechanical error skews bowler’s bid for a perfect 300

Jay Busbee
The Turnstile

The 300 game in bowling is the pinnacle of perfection, 12 straight strikes delivered without a slip. Few people ever get to the point where they're preparing for their 12th and final roll with a chance at immortality.

Troy Walker was one such person. And the way he was denied his 300 has to go down as one of the more agonizing moments in bowling history.

Walker was playing in the Luci Bonneau Doubles, a charity event held this past weekend in Houston. As you can see in the video above, the rack dropped before the ball could hit the pins! That's like a squirrel stealing your ball on the 18th green at Augusta. So unfair. So absolutely unfair. When Walker got the chance to roll again, he only knocked down seven pins, closing with a 297. Worst of all? Walker acknowledged that he might have caused the mistake himself by asking for a re-rack of the lane next to him.

The odds of a perfect 300 game depend on the skill of the bowler slinging the ball. Perfect games happen relatively frequently in professional bowling events; five players have bowled eight perfect games in a season, according to the Professional Bowlers' Association. For perspective: a bowler who averages seven strikes per game, which would be a professional record, has about a 1 percent chance of ever rolling a perfect game. So, yeah, it's not happening for you ... and, sadly, it may not happen for Troy Walker ever again.

"Something to talk about," Walker said afterward. "Won't forget that one."

-Follow Jay Busbee on Twitter at @jaybusbee.-

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