Kendrick Cup 2022
The Kendrick Cup was held in Chicago over the weekend of January 21st-23rd. The draw consisted of 15 novice Rackets players that have been playing for 3 years or less. The players in attendance represented Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Montreal and New York.
Play began on Friday at midday with the first round matches, Montreal’s Rodney Morgan and Chicago’s Gordon Fisher had a close battle with Montreal coming out on top in the first game, which set the tone for the second ending 15/13 15/2. The other highlight from day 1 was an epic between Chicago rookie Phillip Rooney and Detroit’s Charles Roby. A first game thriller, back and forth resulted in the home player showing his true ‘beginner’ looking very confused at 14/14 when asked ‘what would you like to set?’ taking the game 17/15 and moving on to win 2/0.
The Friday evening was a cocktail party in the Players lounge while the last matches of the day took place. Players enjoyed the social scene of the rackets community while livening up the gallery during a showdown between Tanner Austin and Max Scodro.
Saturday the back draw for all first round 2nd place finishers took place on court #2 while the main draw action pressed on, on court #1. It was pleasing and refreshing to see 4 clubs represented in the semi finals, Montreal, Chicago, New York and Boston.
The top half, between Tanner Austin and Kyle Martino, brought the tournament up to the next level. The rallies and the strategy displayed was phenomenal. The first game took almost everything out of the players, Kyle taking the game 15/12. After a short turnaround, the start of game 2 was similarly competitive, Kyle continuing to edge out Tanner in the longer rallies and advancing to the final 2/0.
In the other half, a slow start from Rodney Morgan and a man on a mission approach from Jared Isenthal saw Jared runaway winner 2/0.
The players went away to rest (or not) on Saturday evening before a 9:30am best of 5 game final Sunday morning. Kyle continued where he left off on Saturday but Jared was a match! The first 2 games split 15/8 7/15, the rests were long and provided a great example of novice racquets. Again, Kyle had the stay, serving from 3/6 down to win the game 15/6 and take a 2/1 lead. The final game was the pinnacle of the tournament and left everybody in awe at the standard of ‘beginner’ racquets.
NARA provided all 4 semi finalists with new bats to recognise the new players commitment to the game of Rackets.Kendrick Cup Draw 2022 complete