The round of 16 in the 65 singles + the first doubles matches were played today at the Longboat Key Tennis Center; and I played #5 seeded Joe Adams, in from Texas.
My scouting of Joe from Wednesday said, “solid first serve and big forehand; but doesn’t look like he runs all that well.” I was partially correct. I ran better than he did; but he covered the court well enough; and his serve was “attackable.”
He won the toss and elected to “receive,” which turned out to be fairly indicative of the match…
• I served first and, although I jumped to a 40-15 lead, was broken.
• Second game I broke him; and then held serve; and broke him again to take a 3-1 lead.
• He then broke me back, held serve, and broke me again; and he was serving 4-3
• It was a critical game, in which I had two break points that he saved to make it four games in a row for him.
• I stopped the MO and was able to hold serve and make him try to serve it out in the first set at 5-4. It was a close game; but he won it.
In the second set, I again jumped to an early break lead at 2-0… and again, he ran four games to take a 2 serving 4 lead. I held serve and brought us to the critical game of the match, with Joe again serving at 4-3.
We had about TEN ad points: four of which were game points for him and six were break points for me.
In his saving all six break points, he alternated serving deep to my backhand corner and coming to the net behind his strong serve; and hitting hard service winners down the T. I saved three of the four game points, but lost the last one.
Serving at 3-5 to stay in the match, I was able to save two match points; but lost the third one. The simple score line of 6-4, 6-3 doesn’t do justice to the two hours and twenty minutes we rallied back and forth, with most points being “won” not “lost.”
Hank Irvine was watching the match and came over afterwards; and I told him I kept thinking his words, “What is happening here? And, what can I do about it?” The answer was that Joe’s topspin forehand was too good; and as much as I tried to keep it away from that shot, it came back all too often as the winning stroke.
Plus, he covered the court much better than I thought he could.
But I did learn a lesson about my own loss while having lunch up on the balcony and watching #2 seeded 70s Joe Bachmann struggle against Barry Shollenberger, who was driving Joe side to side and up a break in the first set.
But when it came to “crunch time,” Barry just went for a little bit too much on his shots and “gifted” the first set to Joe 7-5 (who then coasted home in the second).
Some other victors of note: John Mayotte (Tim’s brother) d. (5) Gewan Maharaj; Larry Albritton d. (5) Niesi Sie (6-3, 6-1); Mike Dahm, Gordon Hammes, King Van Nostrand, and several local doubles teams were winners.
For full results, please click HERE