There was no shortage of support from the Chicago, Montréal, Boston, and NY faithful as they followed Geoffrey Barber, Ben Hudson, Philip Morgan, and Wil Hagen secure their first-round wins without dropping a game. Stephen Wetherill kept things interesting giving the tournament it’s first match that went the distance setting the stage for more to come Saturday.
Etyan Wurman and David Yacobucci brought us more three game thrillers in the early rounds. Plenty of quality matchups kept interest high in the Racquets gallery as the crack of Gordon Fisher, Tanner Austin, Ben Hudson, and Rodney Morgan’s serves echoed through the 4th floor, earning them all spots in Sunday’s semifinals.
Top-seed, Tanner Austin, faced off against Gordon Fisher in the first semi-final of Sunday morning. Fisher had made quick work of his opposition on his way to the semis, making great use of his heavy forehand serve on the way. Austin won the spin and reeled off a flurry of service points whilst the ball was still cold. Fisher worked his way into a number of rallies but it wasn’t long before Austin had closed out the game. Fisher had a better start to the second game and stretched out to a 7/1 lead. He wasn’t able to push on and Austin eased into the final with a straight-games victory.
In the second semi-final Rodney Morgan of Montreal faced Ben Hudson of Boston. Morgan reached the semis with ease, putting on a serving clinic in his earlier matches. Hudson had recently made the transition from Court Tennis and looked equally at ease on the Racquets court. Morgan edged himself to a 13-8 lead but wasn’t able to close out the game eventually losing it 16/13. The Bostonian carried the momentum into the second game and took it with ease.
The final was an all-Boston affair pitting Tanner Austin and Ben Hudson against each other. Austin came in with a touch more match experience, but many in the gallery felt that Hudson would prevail should he find his semi-final form. The match was tightly contested throughout with the lead changing multiple times in both the first and second games. At the critical point in each game it was Austin who managed to edge ahead and take the game.
The level of play in this event was as high as has been seen in several years. Matches were played in a fantastic spirit and players enjoyed the off-court camaraderie. Thanks go to the Tournament Committee of Peter Cipriano, John Beam and George Handy. This weekend showed that the game in in good hands, and we can expect to see some of these players making inroads in some of the major events in the coming years.