Canadian Amateur Rackets 2011 - Coyne defeats Male in the Final

09 Feb 2011

Wow!!! What a fantastic weekend!! Those that were here had a fantastic time and those that missed it, well; they missed it and will never get to enjoy what they missed. The weekend was spectacular, from the opening dinner to the closing ceremonies. It was the 10th anniversary of the Mjolnirs and Mr. Mark Agate managed to entice over 20 of his warriors to journey to our frigid and snowy environs. They would not be disappointed. Nor would the many that came from Detroit, Philly, NY/Tuxedo, Chicago and Boston. Maybe we had record numbers, maybe not. But it sure felt like it as one looked around the club at anytime.

Play started on Thursday with 21 early round matches. There were few surprises on day one. Andrew Ness, fresh in from Monaco, teamed with Paul Beattie and played like a champ helping win their match against our own Peter Dawes and Glenn Chamandy. Last year�s surprise team of Nick Kaulbach and Shawn Faguy did not fare as well this year losing their 1st round match 2 straight against MRC Fellow, Rupert Ramsay and club player and bon vivant, James Madon. Chris Wilson, a Mjolnir, won his match in the round of 16 against MRC Club Champion, Bart Sambrook. Karel managed to avoid 3 match points and win his 2nd round match over Alastair Gourlay, 15/3, 10/15 and 5/4 in a 3rd spin-for-serve deciding game.

The Thursday night stag dinner was attended by over 100 gentlemen (loose term). The food was excellent and the wine, velvets and port flowed freely, the stories were great and the room was electric. Later in the evening, the dice rolled, cards were dealt and the Montreal nightlife was tested by many.

Friday was another day. It was an early day for some as play commenced at 7:00 a.m. Stragglers from the night before were seen behind couches, still in their tuxes or kilts. There were a couple of surprises leading up to the prime time evening matches. James Price, playing in only his second or third year took out Mjolnir James Clements in two quick games, 15/5, 15/4 and Bostonians, Jeremy Wintersteen and newcomer Matt Breuer were victorious over the Mjolnir team of James Diggines and James Clements. The round of 16 was completely in both draws uneventfully. The best match was the doubles match between MRC�s Sambrook and Nemec versus Mjolnirs, Dom Wright and James Rowland Clark. The scores were 7/15, 15/10, 5/7 for the locals.

The night was amazing. Chef Philippe Metayer and his crew served up a most wonderful buffet. The dining room was full, tables in the President�s Room were full and DJ Mike Mackell played superb music for all to enjoy until 2:00 a.m. Thanks to Charley Madon for adding some beauty to the night.

The quarter finals started early Saturday morning and saw top seed, James Coyne win over Mike Bailey, 15/5, 15/4. Nick James earned a walkover, as Dom Wright was a no-show. Wright, himself, was in the quarters only because his opponent in the previous round, Richard Spender, withdrew with a hand injury. The 3rd quarter saw James Rock put up a gallant fight, nursing an upper leg injury, while losing to World Champion, James Male, 15/8, 15/4. Male was in Montreal for the first time since 1994. The last quarter final pitted 7th seed, Guy Devereux (NY/TUX) and former Canadian champ, Ben Bomford. It was definitely the best of the four matches with Devereux coming out on top, 15/11 and 15/13.

The doubles quarters started with George Tysoe and Mike Bailey defeating James Coyne and partner, Michel Couture (MRC) easily, 15/0, 15/5. MRC top players, Sambrook and Nemec played very well and managed to win their match versus defending champions, Alastair Gourlay and Ben Bomford, 15/2, 11/15, 15/6. The top seeded pair of James Beaumont and Richard Spender had to default due to Big Red�s injury. Their opponent�s, Guy Devereux and Dan Laukitis (NY/TUX) advanced to the semis.� The final quarter match featured 2006 doubles finalists, Nick James and James Rock. Rock sustained an injury that hampered his play and allowed the team of James Male and Patrick Maxwell to advance to the semis. The scores were 17/14 and 15/12.

The doubles semi finals were played next. Youngsters Tysoe and Bailey powered their way to a 3 straight game victory over Sambrook and Nemec, 15/7, 15/7, 15/8. Male and Maxwell took advantage of Laukitis� inexperience and beat the pairing of Devereux and Laukitis 15/3, 15/8, 15/10.

The first singles semi saw beat Nick James, 15/10, 15/7, 15/8. The power of Coyne�s shots were too much for young Nick, but there is definitely much potential and a bright future for Mr. James on any rackets� court. Well done, Nick!!!! The final match of the day had Male pitted against Devereux. Short and sweet it was, 15/2, 15/4, 15/2. The stage was set for two great matches. Now it was off to the showers to pretty up for the Ball. This year the venue was the popular Montreal night spot Times Supper Club complete with a dancing runway for the more daring of dancers.

The tables surrounded the dancing catwalk and the music was pounding. Dinner was fantastic and then it was time to boogie. The catwalk was full most of the night and we were treated to a very stunning solo dance by one, Mr. James Clements. The cat-like movements, the grace, the �c�mon you all know he was, well, you know, maybe over-served. Outside a raging blizzard covered the city with an 8� blanket of snow, catching many by surprise as the storm was not really in the forecast. Inside it was warm and rocking �til the wee ones.

Early Sunday morning there were the traditional Rolland Cup matches. Peter Johnson (MRC-Canada) took on Nick Harding (DRC-USA) and won. Then they teamed up and played actually nobody and won. Thus the Rolland Cup was declared a draw.

Time for the big one folks!!! The odds makers had James winning the final. Ha-ha-they are both James�. OK, enough silly humour. It was Coyne versus Male in the final. Coynie used all his power and made very few mistakes during the match. Male used his cunning and experience to make the match interesting. There were many fine rallies, some excellent shot making and retrieving but in the end, it was the world�s 4th ranked player, James Coyne emerging victorious with a very convincing 15/11, 15/5, 15/6 victory earning him his first ever Canadian Amateur singles win. Male, though, looked like a champion at times during the match, but it was soon evident that Coyne was going to power his way to the championship. And that is exactly what he did!!!!

James Male and Patrick Maxwell were to play George Tysoe and Mike Bailey after the very tasty and delicious Sunday Brunch. The first game was very close with both teams playing very well. Some rallies were long, some weren�t. Male and Maxwell took the 1st game 15/9. The 2nd was close. The youngsters trailed early in the match but fought back vainly only to lose 15/13. Bailey�s serving and the power of the shots of he and partner, Tysoe made the 3rd game a true trouncing as they won 15/0. This result caused quite a stir and many of the gallery envisioned a 5 game match. But it was not to be. Male and Maxwell prevailed in the 4th game, winning again, in a close one, 15/12.

During the award presentation, MRC president, Andrew Pepper, thanked the players, the galleries and all who were involved in the running of the whole weekend. MRC professional Ryan Tulley and his team (Nick James, James Rock, Ace, Rupert Ramsay, Richard Offord and George MacKenzie) provided excellent marking and made the tournament run smoothly. Match and handicap director, Glenn Chamandy made sure players were in the building and matches were run on time. Philippe and Dominique and the food staff gave us, yet again, a fabulous weekend of culinary delights. Chuck, Randy and the rest of the MRC staff provided more that excellent service throughout the entire weekend. Last but by far not least, we all know that this tournament would not run as smoothly as it does without the guidance of our Club Manager/Steward, Bryce Maher. Kudos to him for his tireless energy and long hours in making our weekend the best weekend of any rackets� season.

Respectfully submitted by James (yes, another James!!) MacLellan

February 8th, 2011

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