Did you ever play someone who hit such an extreme â€œchopâ€ slice on his forehand that the ball took the spin off your racquet and went down into the net? Well in our Friday quarter final match was against the team of Bob Gargiula (he who graduated from Hofstra the same year I did) and his regular partner, Alan Schreiber, both from New York, that is what we faced.
Dick Valentine and had beaten Bob with a different partner in Ft. Myers; but Alan was his regular (and much better) partner, who hit this incredible sliced ball on almost every shot (more extreme than even Newk Camper Willy Hoffmann!). Dick and I started off shakey and went down 4-0; but like the match before, were able to gain some traction and momentum while still losing the first set 6-3.
But we fell behind again in the second â€“ not really being able to handle that extreme slice â€“ and were not able to recover, losing 6-2.
The good news to take from this is that Dick and I really communicated well and came up with three different actions we took to make the match much closer than it was going to be; and even though the scores donâ€™t look close, the points and games were, with the match lasting just under two hours.
Well next week is the Big One: the huge Category II tournament at the former Naples Bath & Tennis Club. There are a total of 357 players entered in this tournament, with 72 (!) entered in the 65 singles. My first round singles match is 11:30 Tuesday against another unseeded player, Richard Curvelo of Sarasota, Florida. And the winner of our match will have the fun the next day of playing the #1 seed and current #1 WORLD title holder, Fred Drilling. More to come.