2012 NC Open: Day 3 report

Posted 14 April 2012 to Tournaments, Association Croquet by Jeff Soo

The 2012 NC Open finalists will be Brian Cumming and Stuart Lawrence.

Cumming lost his first game -25 to Doug Grimsley, Grimsley extending his winning streak to seven games. As the day turned warm, dry, and breezy the match turned interactive, Cumming winning the second game +19, and Grimsley pulling off a TPO in game 3 with the the backward balls for 3. This was Grimsley’s fifth triple peel for the tournament, an excellent record given the difficult court conditions. Having set up the straight rover peel with a nice little cannon, after the Irish peel his ball ended very close to peelee, and he was forced to roquet partner ball first. This meant leaving partner ball well in from the boundary, and Cumming made some aggressive strokes to pick up the match-winning three-ball break, +12otp.

Lawrence and Huneycutt resumed their match, Lawrence having tripled to win the first game. Game 2 was long and interactive, Huneycutt’s roquet turning cold and Lawrence taking advantage to win +5.

More interactive play in the Lawrence v. Peterson semifinal, the conditions again taking their toll. But Lawrence showed good court management to pull out a triple in successive games, winning the match +10tp, +15tp.

Grimsley has a strong lead in the peeling competition, but opted for an early trip home and extra family time instead of a third-place match, leaving Lawrence and a couple of other players a chance to catch up.

The First Flight quarterfinals are underway now. Bill Hartmann was undefeated after the block. The Championship Plate knockout begins tomorrow at 8:00. The Championship final also begins first thing tomorrow. The tournament conditions stated that this would be best-of-five if both semifinals finished today, but this is being re-evaluated in light of the unexpectedly challenging conditions.