Tuesday, January 2, 2018
Happy New Years and Brrrrrr..... It is January so that means it is time for 40s. Those players that are struggling to compete with whippersnappers get their moment. For those of you vacationing at a tropical paradise, it is really cold here in the metroplex. The season starts this weekend and the good news is it will actually warm up to playable conditions... if the weather man is right. If the weather remains like t is as I write this... well, the old joints and muscles are in trouble.
Lets get to the new season to discuss.
We have the usual suspects with Harllee, Reiman and Rossouw as the favorites. Last year, Arcaria broke through and made it interested. Sweeney had to move up and split up after a trip to Nationals.
Rossouw has pared his roster back to a manageable size of 18. With 9 matches to play, this should be workable. He has good 5.0s of Barrick and Lama as well as several good 4.5s like Flores to complement his 5.0s. He should make another trip to city playoffs and have a good chance to make it to sectionals.
Harllee has a lot of the same players back. He has Bruno Braga as a 5.0 to build around and that is a really good place to start. Few 5.0s are going to beat Braga... especially at 40s. He has a lot of good 4.5s to work with as well. I see this team getting to city playoffs too.
Reiman has Foster as a 5.0. He is solid but Braga should have his way with him. Patrick Rea is his other 4.5 but I am not familiar with him so I am not sure what to make of him. He has several solid but not really playoff 4.5s on his roster. This team may or may not be there at the end.
Arcaria has some pieces but with this current roster, it is not enough. Buoni as his lone 5.0 is very solid. If he adds another top notch 5.0, he can compete. He has a chance but he will be fighting but needs a piece or two.
Of the other teams, nobody has enough to be serious contenders.
At 4.0, it appears the epicenter for Dallas middle age tennis is Garland Tennis Center. There are two flights.
4.0 Flight A: This appears to be a three team race between Garland/Russell (formerly known as Garland/Sisk), Brookhaven/Bartlett and Greenhill Ohl.
Garland/Russell: They have decided to take a page out of the Marc Rossouw playbook and start with 21 on the roster. There are only 7 matches to be played so playing time might be slim for several players. They do have some good 4.0s with Tony Le, Mike Zackary, Pat Teterud, Mark Sweeney and Duane Covell. I really expect this team to win the flight.
Brookhaven/Bartlett: This roster looks more or less the same as it has looked for a long time. I expect them to be competitive every week with an outside chance at winning.
Greenhill/Ohl: I could write the exact same thing about this as Brookhaven as the roster looks more or less the same and they will be competitive but only an outside chance at winning.
The other teams in the flight are just playing for fun.
4.0/Flight B: This flight is plain bad. I guess it is a two team race between Garland/Kanchi and Springpark/Walters.
Garland/Kanchi: They only have 9 on the roster. Of the players I know, they aren't bad. One is from San Antonio so that more or less makes this a team of 8. Without some additions, I see some defaulted lines in their future. This team has enough to make it to playoffs but is desperate for some depth.
Springpark/Walters: This team definitely brings a lot of 'experience' in both tennis and life. I actually think they could field a very good Super Seniors team.
Canyon Creek/Patterson: They have a few pieces but not nearly enough.
The truth is this flight is fairly wide open. Kanchi has the best top talent but no depth. The others have a few pieces but little in the line of top end 4.0.
In the end, Garland/Russell is the favorite to get to sectionals.
In the mean time, stay warm! It is Texas in January, if you don't like the weather, just be patient. It will change soon enough.
Monday, December 11, 2017
Tri-Level was this weekend and in a not very big surprise, Sisk and Voldemort won again. Vnce Kingsley took second with his only loss to Sisk's juggernaut. The most impressive part is Sisk won the vent without dropping a line. Actually, they did not drop a single set and only 51 games. In 15 total possible lines, that is an impressive average of better than 6-2, 6-2. One loss runner-up Kingsley dropped 134 games.
I have to think this is the best team in Texas and expect to see them do well at sectionals.
Wednesday, November 29, 2017
I know a lot of people (especially a few captains) think about rating release like a kid does Christmas. Well, there is an official countdown clock on Tennis Link. Tomorrow night at 11:00 is the rating release.
I have been needing to make a new post but this fall format and people just playing with nothing to gain makes it uninteresting. Let me know what you guys think of the fall.
Regardless, it was time for a new post and with Tri-Level and 40s coming up, it is time to re-engage the blog.
Wednesday, August 30, 2017
HAPPY ANNIVERSARY !!!
Not much has changed over the decade. Houston was still the talk of beating out Dallas in Sectionals, and a man name Bender was winning National titles. While some of the players have changed, the topics have remained the same. Complaints of tanking, playing out of level, year end ratings, Tri-level, Combo, etc. was just as alive back then as it is now. (No- I didn't forget mixed. It just wasn't much of a topic until we entered a narcissistic society.)
To celebrate, I thought it would be appropriate to recognize the contributors, and then provide you with some of my favorite blog posts over the past 10 years. You can click on the Blog Archives to revisit if you so wish.
Recognition to past contributors:
Carey Bazan aka Lucky Thunder (Founding Father)
Corey Noel (CoreDawg aka Nancy)
TOP 10 BLOG POSTS:
10) Monday, July 20, 2009 3.5 City Wrap Up - It was the beginning of using pictures in the blog post and was aimed at me, spawning me to begin anonymously blogging as Captain Fantastic.
9) Monday, December 1, 2008 Year End Ratings About To Drop - Coming at the top with number of comments - 357. Yes the blog was alive and well back then. Complaints about getting Benchmark rankings.
8) Sunday, May 23, 2010 Working the System - Roussouw submits his Jerry McGuire essay. Unfortunately, Klamecki switched to Subscribe, and when he switched back, all comments were lost. I would have loved to have read those.
7) Wednesday, February 19, 2014 THE LORD OF THE RATINGS – THE RETURN OF THE KELLY CASTING CALL FOR DTA PRODUCTIONS - Not because this was about Kelly, but because it was the birth of Murray Langston and him graciously taking over the blog.
6) Unfortunately, it was another post with suppressed comments, but miraculously, when year end ratings come out, the system is overloaded and locks up, and Bob Somabut gets 10 of his players that were bumped up and benchmarked, appealed back down a level. And Kelly thinks he is special.
Since I can't find the link, I regress with one of my drunken Christmas poems:
Wednesday, December 21, 2011 - Twas the Night before Christmas
5) Saturday, October 8, 2011 - Good Readings for the Fall - I truly think this is good advice, and if more adhered to my suggestions, there would be less complaining about the tanking.
4) Monday, October 14, 2013 - Dallas 3.5s Bring home 1st 40 and Over National Title
3) Tuesday, March 20, 2012 - Team Arcaria Finishes 2nd at Tri-Level Nationals - A personal knock on me and had me reveal my identity. Looking back, outside of the jealous tone, it is kind of funny, especially having my face superimposed in all of those historic pictures. I hold no grudges and see Klamecki each year at the Bent Tree Indoor Classic.
2) Sunday, July 18, 2010 - Star Wars 7 - Decimation of the Sith (aka GTC) - What can I say. It was an epic time, and an epic post.
AND THE NUMBER ONE BLOG PLOST ...........
1) Sunday, August 5, 2012 - Hitler Plays USTA league tennis in Dallas - Not sure who produced this, but did create the rave in Dallas.
I am sure there are several other posts that could have been listed, especially some of Murray's recent writings, or the show-down between Gerber and Bazan. However, I haven't had the time to stay up-to-date on things or go back and read them all. These were just some that stuck in my mind. I hope you enjoy!
Thanks Carey --- to 10 more years?!!
Posted by Captain Fantastic at 10:28 PM
Friday, August 18, 2017
Sectionals is over and it was a definitely story of Dallas, Houston and the Little Dwarf cities. As or commenters noticed, Dallas won 40% of the sectionals events. In itself, that is a remarkable number. On the flip side, a comment was made Houston won 60%. That left exactly 0% for the est of the state. San, Antonio, Austin, West Dallas (aka Ft. Worth) and all the irrelevant cities were shutout.
5.0+--At 5.0, Lakes-Jannasch brought home the sectionals trophy. I cannot say I am shocked as I think this is the best 5.0 Dallas team I can recall. Jeff deserves a great amount of credit as this team is loaded top to bottom. The only thing surprising me was they actually had 3 matches go to 2-1. This team is good and I think they have a serious chance at gong deep at nationals. This team is better than the one Oscar finished as runnerup a few years ago. Jeff is a good guy and I wish them success. This is the one nationals I will follow as this team has a chance to impress the nation and make Dallas proud!
4.5--Freeman and his Houston forces... well Vidi, Vici, Vini.. They came, they saw and they conquered. I saw a little of this and the kid playing singles out of Houston was... out of level. I will leave it at that. Dallas made the semis but outmatched by a good San Antonio team. The score says 3-2 but two matches were abandoned when San Antonio got three lines. It is a good run for a relatively new captain in Jorge Aguilar. If he keeps his core together and adds a couple of pieces, this team could be really special next year. I will root for Texas as they do have Jean on the Houston team.
4.0--Wild Houston wins this one. They beat Freeman's forces in the semi finals here. I actually thought the Kanchi team would do damage but I guess you have to get to sectionals to actually win sectionals. Garland/Russell gave Wild Houston everything they could handle but losing close 3-2 while missing their best singles guy on Friday. I have to wonder if things are different if this match is played on Saturday. I will once again root for Texas... I guess it isn't Freeman.
3.5--Deja Vu from 4.5. Freeman and his Houston forces came and won again. I could pretty much copy and paste the 4.5 commentary except Houston beat Dallas in a close semi-final match. It looks like Dallas needed to sweep doubles as they were all very close but that is asking a lot.
3.0--What would a year look like if a Bender team did not win a sectionals title? I am sure it happened in Far Far Away Land a Long Long Time Ago. Bender wins again while playing in a single flight and dropping the first match to comeback and win. Let this be a lesson to those captains that just tank after they lose... ahem, West Dallas captain.
In the end, it is always fun. Dallas won the two extremes of the bell curve and Houston won the working man's part of the curve. The rest of the state is just playing to go to Dallas and be fodder in the heat. Regardless, I still think 40% of the events is impressive.
Combo starts and I guess Sisk and Kanchi have the best teams. I am picking Sisk as I will not pick Kanchi again until he shows me his teams actually win even when they have the best roster.