Today’s semi final singles match was against #2 seeded, Don Long from NY. As the seed would indicate, he is a very solid player, who has a squash background with very wristy shots – especially on his backhand.
My game plan was to play more to his forehand and give him somewhat loopy topspin shots, which seemed to be working! I was able to break him in the opening game and then hold my serve.
He then held and broke my serve. But I stuck to the plan and broke him again to be serving at 3-2. Unfortunately, he broke back again; held serve; broke to take the lead; and served out the set at 6-3.
In the second set, he raised his level even higher and made many excellent shots, several off the lines, and even a couple of lucky shots. Even though I played well, he had the edge in every game except the first and cruised to a 6-1 victory.
Chatting with his finals opponent tomorrow, Fred Drilling (former world #1), he said that my strategy was “mostly good” and what he tries to do; but he says I should attack the short ball, come to the net, and make Don try to hit passing shots.
Doubles: After a light lunch, Tom and I teamed up against the #3 seeds, Bill Plummer (lefty from Sarasota, who is also playing in the 60 dubs and seeded #1 there!) and Rich Ferguson. They dominated the first set and took it easily 6-2.
In the second set, we regrouped, got aggressive, and took a “commanding” 3-0, double service break lead. Except the lefty took over the match and the momentum – and they took the next six games and the match, 6-2, 6-3.
My good week in singles was capped off with a surprise… $25 in prize money for making the singles semis!