There were three USTA tennis events scheduled for this weekend in the Florida area… The Florida cup with the East Coast versus the West Coast; the Atlanta Senior invitational tournament; and league play for the sectionals in Daytona. Not all got accomplished successfully.
The Florida cup
In the Saturday morning singles matches with 10 event taking place in age groups from 35 to 80, the East Coast ended up leading the West Coast by a score of 14 to 6.
In our 70s number one singles match, our Ray Bellamy of Tallahassee lost a long, three set match against Graham Primrose, Aussie who grew up playing with John Newcombe and then starred at Mississippi State.
In the second round I played against Bob Levine of Pompano Beach Florida. Although I have written about “how to play against a moon baller,” I didn’t do a very good job of following my own advice. Not only was he great at that basic game, he ran almost everything down I hit, and had a great drop shot as well. He could also flatten out the ball and drive it on serves and groundstrokes when he needed to. End result: a straight set loss.
In the mornings other singles matches, Dick Stockton and Roscoe Tanner playing for the East Coast, each won their singles matches in straight sets. After that they teamed up to play against our Howie Ames and Andy Bloom. While the match was close, the score wasn’t.
But our 70s doubles team of Matt Davie and Dick Valentine fared much better, solidly beating Bob Levine and Graham Primrose 6-1, 6-3.
On Sunday, our team faced an insurmountable deficit; but Ray Bellamy and I both won our “reverse singles” matches. Ray won by default after taking the first set 7-5. And I had the pleasure of playing against Aussie Graham Primrose (who lost in the first round of the 1966 Australian Open).
We were playing even in the first set, when Graham broke me and won it 6-3. But in doing so, he pulled a muscle in his back; so I was able to outlast the gallant Aussie 3-6, 6-1, 6-1.
While the West Coast team lost, our 70s team won 3 of 5 matches.
ATLANTA SENIOR INVITATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS
(Super Category II National, 500 pts)
Most of the region’s top players are in Atlanta this week, playing singles and doubles in this USTA tournament. For a link to the draws and to see how Fred Drilling did vs Jimmy Parker, Mike Dahm did vs Brian Cheney, and Gordon Hammes did, please click HERE.
Pity the two Naples area 4.0 and 4.5 league teams that traveled to the Daytona Sectionals only to sit around and watch the rain for two days; and have their matches postponed till June!
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