Well, the first sanctioned desert pickleball tournament of the 2016 season is history:
Marcin Rozpedski (The Lakes CC Sports Director, formerly an IRCC Tennis Pro) joined by his partner, Morgan Evans, Tennis Pro at Shadow Mountain, won “Gold” in the 5.0 Men’s Doubles Skills Event, and then he won another “Gold” in the Women’s Mixed Doubles;
Blake Wilcox, Tennis Director at Andalusia and at Palm Valley before that, won “Gold” in the both the Men’s and Women’s Doubles 50+ events; and
George Balch, a long-time Indian Ridge member, with his tennis partner, Buzz Summers (81 years old), won “Gold” in the 65+ Men’s Doubles.
Congratulations to all! Oh, I guess I should mention that my self could not repeat with a win in the Men’s Doubles Skills, with my good partner, Steve Granik. Alas, maybe the event outcome was “rigged” (just kidding). Anyways, there will be three (3) more such desert tournaments this season, so let’s have some more Indian Ridge players in these very-professionally-run events.
OPEN PLAY THIS WEEK:
Thursday & Saturday @ 3-5pm
Friday & Sunday @ 10am–
Please comment below on your plans, so we’ll all have an idea who will be playing at various times and then signup with the Fitness Center Desk before playing.
Here’s a video of first day play at the Andalusia CC tournament going on this weekend, with Morgan Evans of Shadow Mountain doing commentary. It features a mixed doubles match, with Blake Wilcocks (sp?), formerly tennis pro at Palm Valley and now at Andalusia, and a women’s singles match. They’ll be more videos as the tournament moves through the weekend, with men’s/women’s doubles age groups Saturday and men’s/women’s doubles skill groups Sunday (when national doubles champs – Marcin Rozpedski and Morgan Evans will play).
The fact that so few players have returned to IRCC yet, and the time conflict with the opening game of the World Series, may be the reason that no one else has signed-up for open play tomorrow at 5:30-7pm. But if you would like to play, comment ASAP below and then phone/sign-up at the Fitness Center desk (760-772-4432). We’ll see if we can get others to join us.
If you can’t make it tomorrow, there are other open times this week:
The full season will get underway in just three weeks or so, with four new pickleball courts, some special events and clinics, and then lots of inter-club match play. But you don’t have to wait to join in the pickleball fun at the Club. Here’s the pre-season schedule of open play for the balance of October, when all members and member-guests are welcomed to play together and helped to learn and enjoy the game:
Tuesday 10/25 @ 5:30-7pm Wednesday 10/26 @ 8am
Thursday 10/27 @ 5:30-7pm Friday 10/28 @ 8am
Saturday 10/29 @ 3-5pm Monday 10/31 @ 5:30-7pm
When you’d like to play at one or more of these times, please signup by calling the tennis/pickleball desk and then you’ll learn which court(s) are available for open play and how many players are expected . It’s planned that a member or two of our ad hoc pickleball committee will be at each open play session. And we’ll email out a reminder before each session with the number of confirmed players and asking you to confirm or re-confirm that you will be there .
The weather’s cooling a bit now, so we can get to the courts to sharpen our game. Yesterday at 8am, with a shortage of players, we played “Australian” and had great fun. Hopefully, we can get a full complement tomorrow at 8am and continue the pre-season tune-up sessions (let us know below if you can make it). The temperature is great at that time of day.
Nancy and I went over to the Palm Desert Rec Center (on San Pablo behind city hall/police station) this morning and played indoors for the first time. It cost us $5 each, as we wanted to try it out before getting a $25 pass for the season. We played mixed and I got in a good men’s doubles match. While the lighting, wood-floor glare, indoor noise and multiple gym lines were a bit weird and distracting, it should be a good backup until weather cools and we get more players back. They have open play on Tuesday and Thursday at 10am-1pm and 1pm-4pm on Wednesdays.
You can click on the link below to read the latest Pickleball Magazine issue. Several articles standout. First, there’s the one on split-stepping, that reviews the great advantages of being light on your feet in this game, enabling one to make the quick adjustments needed at the “kitchen” line, reaching for wide and very short balls, etc. ( I noted that almost all the players at Rec Center today were flat footed most of the time, and it showed). Second, there’s the article about the Outdoor Resort in Indio, with its dozen courts and very active program (seems the RV folks really like the game, following it around the country.) Then there’s articles about monitoring the burgeoning pickleball ball market and the arrival of the new Onix Pure 2 ball (boy, do I like playing with it). Next is an article about when playing up and down (from our skill level) makes good sense, i.e. in Open Play times, and should be encouraged (I’m going over to the notoriously unfriendly Freedom Park soon to test if this thinking is universal). And finally, there’s “Pickleball 401” that lauds the soft, deep return of service to give one time to maneuver to the Kitchen line. All in all, a good issue.