This weekend is the annual hard court doubles tournament at Colby Sawyer College in New London. B. Manning and I again teamed up, this year in what they called the Menâ€™s A Division: any age, with a ranking of 4.0 â€“ 5.0.
Our first match this morning at the terrible hour of 8 am (on the practice court at 7:15) against a team that we beat last year. We repeated the process with an easy 6-1, 6-0 victory.
Our second match was then at 3 p.m. today against two solid, mid-fifty players from southern New Hampshire. Ken Moulton is a good righty that uses that unique two-handled racquet (that looks like hedge clippers). His partner was Larry Barnes, a very strong lefty, who has played USTA 5.0 League.
We started the match under heavy clouds and rumbling thunder; and broke them each on their first service games to take a quick 4-0 lead. While we gave back one of the breaks, we held on to serve it out at 5-4 and take the first set.
We started out breaking them in the first game of the second set and B was serving at 40-30 in the second game, when the thunder and lightning got too close and we were called off the court. We all went to an indoor facility about 10 minutes away to resume play.
After 10 minutes of warm up, B started serving that big psychological point. Ace.
We ended up giving the break back on my next service game and then the lefty served a long, critical game at 3-3. There must have been six totals ads in/out before they finally held. We then stayed on serve till we served at 5-6 and they broke us to take the second set.
In lieu of a third set, we played a 10-point tie breaker. Even though they had the momentum at the end of the second set, we started out faster in the tie break. Were up a point, even, up a point, even.
They served at 8-8 and we won a solid point; so I was serving at 9-8 for the match. B came back to me and said, â€œKen will want to lob this one; so why donâ€™t you stay back and I will roam at the net.â€ I put a decent spin serve to his backhand, stayed back, and he tried to go cross court to the opening; and B slide across to take it and put away the winner for the match.
Sunday morning we play two very young and very hard-hitting guys, who beat the number one seeds in a third set tie breaker. And we heard from the losers that they said, â€œThis was essentially the finals; we shouldnâ€™t have any trouble with those other two guys (us).â€ I am putting that quote on my â€œlockerâ€ and remembering it as we play the finals Sunday morning at 10 a.m.