Welcome to the 10th and last IRT Tier 1 event of the 2023 season. For the first time since 2015, the season-ending title race comes down to this event. We’ll talk about that at more herein.
I just did a guest spot on Sudsy Monchik ‘s show talking about a bunch of these issues. I’ve got a surprise time crunch for the rest of this week so this will be abbreviated.
Short answer on the title race: if DLR makes the semis, he’s got the title sewn up. If he gets upset early, then Jake has to advance 3 rounds further to win (i.e., Jake wins, DLR loses in qtrs = jake title. Jake finals and DLR loss in 16s = Jake title. Jake semis and Daniel loss in 32s won’t be enough).
R2 Sports App link:https://www.r2sports.com/tourney/home.asp?TID=41282
There’s a massive 48 player draw here, which is awesome and by far the biggest draw since Denver or the last US Open.
Lets preview the draw. Here’s some notable qualifying matches that i’m looking forward to:
In the round of 64, there’s a couple of matches i think will be competitive. Bredenbeck – Jennings, Riffel-gomez, Cardona-Galicia, Sendrey-Wolfe, and Horn-Gatica could all be fun. the best match though of the round is @wWayne Antone versus Diego Gastelum , fresh of a win at U21 worlds. Two solid players and this should be a great match.
Projecting the 32s: keep an eye on:
– Natera-Martin; Martin can make top player sweat. Parrilla-Cardona; two old WRT foes take off and Cardona can play with Andree. Rocky Carson faces @Javier Mar in a fantastic round of 32. King Kane plays into @Erick Trujillo , against whom he once got a 1,1 win. Lastly Thomas Carter likely faces co-host bobby Horn in a tough one (if bobby’s been playing racquetball instead of pickelball that is).
– DLR likely faces N ick Riffel, not the easest first rounder but one that DLR should handle
round of 16:
– DLR title watch: he likely faces Carrasco or Sam Bredenbeck; he should advance over both
– Acuna-Natera in 8/9 should be a great match. Acuna has the edge
– Mar-Parrilla or Carson-Parrilla; expect a tactical showdown
– for the 2nd event in a row Kane Waselenchuk plays into Moscoso, and for reasons I expounded on in Sudsy’s show, Kane wins again.
– Portillo faces Landa in wh at might be Landa’s final regular touring match
– DLR over Acuna; these two met in Boston and it was a nailbiter: 14,14. Can Acuna play spoiler here? DLR is 5-0 lifetime vs Acuna, 2-0 versus Natera so the odds are with him to advance and capture the title.
– Montoya vs the winner of Mar/Carson/Parrilla; advantage Rodrigo whoever it is. I have a soft spot for Mar, but he’s better on the doubles court
– Kane plays into Manilla for the 2nd event in a row, and i can’t see any different of a result than in Boston.
– Jake plays Lalo; Jake s hould move on, knowing what’s at stake.
– A distracted DLR, knowing this result wins him the title, loses to MOntoya
– Jake faces Kane again, and wins another nail biter after Kane runs out of gas.
– Montoya over Jake; they’ve met a bunch of times going back to WRT and Montoya holds a slight 5-4 career advantage.
Always project Montoya and Mar to win in doubles. DLR and Landa are 2nd seed but i could see a shocker like Acuna/Portillo from the bottom half.
Look for Streaming in the regular places; follow the IRT on Facebook and sign up to get notifications when they go Live. Look for Favio Soto, Samuel Schulze, Pablo Fajre and the IRTLive crew all weekend on the mike, calling the shots!
Thanks to the Tourney Directors Adam Manilla and Bobby Horn for putting this event on and getting the funds to bring back the portable court for the first time on tour since the 2021 US Open. Thanks to all the event sponsors; it goes without saying that without you and your support, we don’t have a sport.
International Racquetball Tour