Thursday, May 26, 2011


We were slightly down on entries this year in the Doubles 100 Tournament which is naturally a little disappointing. While the leagues have been running fairly well this half season and finding subs hasn’t been too difficult either, I would have thought players would have been motivated to give this event a crack – especially with an ‘A’ and ‘B’ draw. Alas, it wasn’t the case. The drop in registrations was only in the A category: from 8 teams last year to only 5 teams this year, which ended up being 4 teams when one team dropped out due to injury. The B draw stayed the same with 8 teams.

Looking at the B draw first, I was surprised the scores weren’t closer. On paper, I was expecting a few of the matches to go at least to 4 if not 5 games. However, all first rounds ended up 3-0 as did the second semi final. The first semi final did get stretched to 4 games where Joe Moran and Ken Katz (aged 121) defeated Bob Garvey (winner of the recent Doubles Select Tournament) and Shail Arora (aged 111). The Moran / Katz team were seeded one and they met the second seeded of John Chouinard and Mike Petix (aged 106) in the final. The closeness of this match made up for all the other results. Deep into the 5th game, the score reached 13-all. Set 5 was decided. Chouinard / Petix jumped ahead quickly in the tie-break to 4-1 earning themselves 4 match balls. But Moran / Katz fought back under the pressure tying it at 4-all and bringing the entire tournament down to one sudden-death rally. I’ll use the words straight from the horse’s mouth (Joe Moran’s mouth, that is) to describe the final shot of this monumental battle: “I tinned a poorly chosen backhand drop shot” which gave Chouinard / Petix a historic 18-17 in the 5th win.

The A draw was thin to say the least. With only 4 teams, everybody started off in the semi final meaning they only had to win 1 match to play for the title. It was made even thinner when the second semi final was decided by a forfeit which gave the Peter Logan and Patrick Petz (aged 104) team a free pass to the final where they met last year’s winners Bob Thibodeau and Bowden Brown (aged 118). History was on Bob and Bowden’s side, as they had eliminated the Petz / Logan team in the semi finals for the last two years. Now why this draw has taken over 4 months to complete is quite simple. The original date was set to play the final in March, but the dreaded 24-hour flu struck down one of the players. After that, Bob decided that he needed a couple of months down south so he could secretly train for this all important encounter. Did it pay off? Naturally Patrick and Peter were keen to defeat their nemesis, they did not want to be sent packing by this pair three years running. Both teams started off equally strong. Only a couple of points separated them through the first game and the justified tie-break was won 16-14 by Petz and Logan. However, back came the reigning champs. Bob and Bowden took the second 15-13 to even it up, but couldn’t keep that trend going as they then lost the third 15-12 and with it any momentum they may have had. Before they could blink, they were 11-2 down in the fourth. Still, they made Patrick and Peter a little nervous toward the end as they crept back into striking distance but it was too little too late and they went down 15-10. Congratulations to the Petz / Logan team! [Photo: Bowden Brown, Bob Thibodeau, Peter Logan, Patrick Petz]

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