Well it certainly was a roller coaster season for Dorado (Paul Green + Dan Ettel). They were undefeated after the first 12 rounds but only won 7 of the last 9 rounds. Their great start to the season virtually assured them a place in the final. Ironically their first loss in round 13 was at the hands of Swordfish (Alan Bruhn + Jimmy Yang) when Paul Green had his first fixture loss in several seasons going down to Alan.
Swordfish repeated the dose in last night’s Grand Final winning 3-2. While one could argue that the demise of Dorado was largely due to a sad run of injuries to Paul Green over the last month, it was this win back in round 13, when Paul was reasonably injury free, which showed that Swordfish were capable of an upset.
The tussle last night was open right to the end. After Paul and Dan won the doubles in 5 sets, they only had to win one of the 2 remaining singles. And even after Alan repeated his round 13 win over Paul after Paul aggravated an injury stretching for a wide ball in the doubles, the final match between Jimmy and Dan was wide open. Dan won the first game, keeping the hope alive for Dorado, but Jimmy Yang held his nerve to win the last 3 games and hence the grand final in an attacking and very entertaining match.
Well done to Alan Bruhn, whom I continue to claim is possibly the smartest player in the club, and Jimmy Yang who gave Alan consistent great support in the season. And well done to both teams for showing exemplary sportsmanship throughout the final.
Whichever way last night’s grand final went, there was going to be reason to celebrate in Maleny with Coen Slaughter and Greg Williams on one side and Russell Treloar on the other. They even brought along a Maleny cheer squad though I am not sure which team they were supporting.
Minor Premiers, Alsations (Coen Slaughter, Greg Williams + Adam Fitzsimmons) were always going to be hard to beat as all 3 players were in form having had great seasons. However Dalmations (Russell Treloar, Liam Reeve + Matt Orchard) were capable of an upset. Russell is an experienced classy player, Liam Reeve on his night is capable of 3 from 3, and Matt Orchard has been improving every week.
In the end, I believe it was the lack of match practice for Liam that swung the balance the way of the Alsations. Play was abandoned after they got to an unassailable 6-3 lead.
A pity in a way as I was looking forward to the “Maleny Championship” showdown between Coen and Russell.
The new season starts on April 24 with practice nights on the next 2 Thursdays and Tuesday April 17.