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Charlotte Athletic Club 2012 Grand Prix Results

Charlotte Athletic Club

In the second Grand Prix to be held this year in the Carolina's, two competitive groups fought out the honors at the first ever Charlotte Athletic Club Spring Grand Prix on Saturday May 26th.

May 29th, by Richard Millman

In Group 2, after players had played two qualifying best of three game ( PARS to 13) matches, the top three players competing for first second and third were Geo Marques Neto from CAC, Rizwan Zamir from Davidson College and Jonathan Basnett also from Davidson College.

In the first of the finals matches Geo stormed ahead against Jonathan, who was not quite finding his best form. Geo took the match 2-0.

Then Geo himself found the competition very tough as he came up against Rizwan who defeated Geo 2-0.

Jonathan looked as though he was about to complicate the math to decide the tournament winner when he then took the first game against Rizwan. However he couldn't maintain his superiority and lost the next two to Rizwan, leaving Rizwan the champion in first place, Geo in second and Jonathan in third.

Both the second and third divisions of group two were closely contested with each of the three members of the box gaining a victory and the final order being decided on head to head results rather than purely on games won.

Earlier in the day Group 1 players had also contested two qualifying matches which were again best of three games ( PARS to 13) to gain a spot in the final play-off divisions.

Both myself and Geoff Roper from CAC had fairly comfortable paths into the finals, although it wasn't immediately clear who the third player to make the top division would be as wily veteran Ahmed Soliman from CAC had to meet George Washington University number three Jose Calderon in the qualifying rounds. In the event Jose showed how much he had improved in his University Squash career and defeated Ahmed 2-0.

So the top division of the final matches involved myself, Geoff Roper from CAC ( who was on great form having reached the latter stages of the Canadian National 45+ recently) and Jose Calderon ( originally from CAC but more recently from GWU).

Despite the scorelines, these were extremely competitive matches. First on court were myself and Jose. In the first game, Jose attacked well and gained a considerably lead. I was able to play tighter as the game went on however and as the pressure increased, Jose became a little fatigued and the errors crept in. In the second game I was able to get a stronger grip on the match and maintained control throughout, winning 2-0.

In Jose's match with Geoff the rallies were extremely hard fought with neither player seemingly having the upper hand. The result was again a poor reflection of the quality of the match. Geoff either had game ball or was within a point of game ball in both games and yet lost them both, Jose coming out the victor at 2-0.

Things unfortunately didn't improve for Geoff when he played me in the final match of the competition. In probably the best match Geoff has played against me, he attacked with tremendous accuracy and particularly tight width down the backhand side.

I found myself hanging on as the attacks rained in and all of a sudden was facing a game ball. Somehow I managed to win the key rally and edged in front to win the first game.

The second game was just as competitive although I was playing a little better and managed to keep my nose in front. Geoff played really well however and if he keeps maintaining this form, will threaten a lot of players who have previously been stronger than him.

In the second division Ahmed Soliman was too strong for his opponents - running out the clear winner and in the third division there was a fine effort from the up and coming CAC junior Manu Amin who also defeated his two opponents to win.

Overall it was an excellent day's competition.

Many thanks to Jim Marshall for his sterling support as chief camera man and referee.

Particular thanks to Cheribundi for their generous donation of their product of Tart Cherry Juice which every player tried and by all accounts enjoyed.

I would be very interested to hear if their experience with Cheribundi's anti-inflammatory properties was similarly beneficial to my own.

The next Grand Prix's that I will be running - which are open to all players - will be at MUSC Harper Wellness Center in Charleston ( on the American courts - but still a lot of fun) on Saturday July 7th and provisionally at Charlotte Athletic Club on Saturday July 14th.

Please contact me: Richard Millman at thesquashdoctor@yahoo.com for details.

Results

Group 1: Results1    
       
Group 2: Results1    
       

Photos

(Click photo to view slideshow)