With rain through the evening, our semifinal match was moved up an hour and we started play at 8 am on Sunday. I was happy to be getting a re-match with the player that left me feeling terrible 4 years ago. He was hitting the ball pretty well, however (and I guess I don’t know a nice way of saying this) he is not in good physical shape anymore and I was working and moving him around pretty hard. I was in control of the points but was over-using the drop shot and trying to extend the points to wear him down. I actually ended up losing more points this way, and therefore lost a couple games more than I might have liked, but I felt it would still be the best strategy. Unfortunately, toward the end of the first set, after angling him off the court, he returned it and pulled up lame, possibly tearing a ligament in his lower leg, and he was forced to retire. I felt bad for him, as injuries are never fun. He was also really nice about noticing how much I have improved since we last played.
After a couple hours break, it was time for the final. I knew going into the finals that my opponent was going to be very tough. His playing resume proved that he was a solid college player — playing tight with the number one players at UCLA and Pepperdine, as well as a lot of good wins over top ranked NCAA players, and to top it off, he has played Davis Cup for his country, which shows his experience. There really is not a lot I can say about the match, as it was a disappointing display.
It was a bad combination for me — he played very aggressive and was on fire. And I played quite a bit inconsistent. He was getting 2 or more aces each serve game, was frequently was hitting returns hard near the baseline, and was drilling down the line winners in the rallies. Basically, he did to me what I did to my opponents just the day before.
It feel disappointing, but I shouldn’t let it effect me too much because I had a very off-day. More importantly, he is one of the best couple players I’ve ever played and he seemed to really be in the zone that day.
I still got another nice check for the weekend, and I have two more big money tournaments coming up. First will be in Thunder Bay, Canada and the next will be in Wisconsin. These will be great opportunities to make some more cash, play some tough competition and get prepared for the US Open Nationals in mid-August.
Talk to you guys next weekend!