GRAND FINALS TOMORROW NIGHT - Who is going to win?
Division 1 Enchiladas V Nachos
Enchiladas (Adam Wood, Alan Bruhn and Joel Carpenter) have ended up with their nose in front by the narrowest of margins over 2nd placed Nachos (Seng Joo Keng, Linda Yap and Patrick Keating). It was 7 rubbers all, 63 matches all, and 230 games to 221.
But in their 2 encounters Nachos has won 6-5 both times. So it really could go either way. And the individual match-ups were quite different on the 2 previous encounters. For example Adam Wood won only onlt one match on Feb 9 but 3 out of 3 on March 6. So it seems the winning team will be the one that brings it’s a game on the night.
Player observations by one biased observer (me):-
Adam Wood – Has the trickiest serves in A grade and a very effective block. Has won the Club Championship twice recently. Plays well under pressure.
Alan Bruhn – Arguably the most experienced and crafty player in A grade but does not have youth on his side.
Joel Carpenter – Always very determined. Consistently wins one handy singles match for his team.
Seng Joo Keng – Stylish, fast attacking player with plenty of weapons at his disposal. Finishes towards top of ladder every season.
Linda Yap – When Linda is on fire, she can win 3 out of 3 as she has done before. If the ball is hit back in her hitting range, no matter how low and undercut, Linda will put it away. She has recently had some big wins including over Paul Green and twice this season over Martin Tribe.
Patrick Keating – A very unpredictable and cunning player who is capable of putting any player off their natural game.
Incidentally the top ranked player for the season was Jerrod Thomson who powered past young gun, Dan Ettel, mid season.
Division 2 Tempura V Edamame
Division 2 was the only division to have Semis this season as there was 10 teams in this division. There were no upsets in the semis with the 2 top teams, Tempura (John Ettel, Sharon Matherson and Greg Briggs) and Edamame (Stephen Parke, Gordon Holden and Ashik Ashik) having easy wins.
And if you go by statistics, Tempura should have no difficulties winning the grand final They have not lost a rubber all season and won their only encounter with Endamame during the season 7-4.
But we all know that grand finals are a different story and anything can happen on grand final night.
More player observations by one biased observer :-
John Ettel – John was up the topof the rankings early in the season but faded a little towards the end. His heavy top and side spin can trouble many players but some players have no trouble with it. He is very determined to continue his team’s winning performance right to the end.
Sharon Matherson –Sharon’s unusal style makes Patrick Keating’s style look mainstream. While not having an attacking game, her strengths are her amazing consistency in getting the ball back and her placement. She is just another example of our club’s big gains in women power of late.
Greg Briggs –Greg is Tempura’s secret weapon. He was placed in the team as the no 3 player but has actually finished the season well out in front of the rankings with a 93% strike rate.
Stephen Parke – A relaxed playerwith sound strategies. A good player to have on your team in a final. A long term Maleny player who has recently come down from the mountain.
Gordon Holden – The most experienced player in B grade. Gordon never gives up. He has been a bit up and down this season. Could be a deciding factor if he brings his A game.
Ashik Ashik – This is the first season for Ashik in the Sunshine Coast Comp. Like Greg Briggs, his talents were underestimated when teams were announced. Hefinished 2nd in the rankings with only 6 losses in the season.
Division 3 Cannoli V Carbonara
Cannoli (Nick Knight, Di Philp, Steve Wilcox), like Tempura in B Grade, have gone through the season undefeated and are hot favourites. They boast 3 of the top 5 ranked players in C grade. However, don’t discount Carbonara (Heather Dunlevie, James Zhang, Phil Oates) who have very good credentials. Since the addition of Phil on Feb 16, Carbonara have won 4 of their 6 outings. James Zhang is the top ranked C grade player and has lost only 2 matches all season. And Heather Dunlevie is an experienced campaigner who was at the top of the rankings at the start of the season.
Nick Knight – Nick is a very likeable and courteous player who finished second on the player rankings.
Di Philp – Di has shown herself to be a quite capable player. She finished a creditable 5th in the rankings in C gradeand 1st of the 9 female players.
Steve Wilcox – 4th on the rankings and with a very cool disposition, Steve would be a no 1 in most other teams.
Heather Dunlevie – Ken Hay’s coaching has helped Heather to be a very sound player. She has developed some very good serves and is very consistent, especially in doubles.
James Zhang – James has an attacking game which most C graders can not cope with. It is no surprize that he has ended up top of the rankings.
Phil Oates – Phil joining the team has enabled Carbonara to sneak into the final and might even help them to a Premiership.
So in conclusion, while there are no surprises as to the lineups in the Grand Finals, I am 100% sure there will be a few surprises in the FINAL . There has been some great sportsmanship shown in all grades this season and I am sure it will continue into the finals. As Nick Kyrgios recently said “Tennis is just a game, don’t want to take it too seriously”.