IRT 2023 Season: News recap and looking forward to 2024

Here’s the last in my end of season series, taking a look at the seminal events of the season and then looking forward.

– 1/5/23: IRT and Gearbox officially announce what has been rumored for a few weeks: Gearbox has replaced Head/Penn as the official ball and official equipment manufacturer of the IRT. This ends a nearly 20-year agreement Penn had to provide the official IRT ball. Gearbox’s balls are known to be more “durable” and “more consistent” … but are also known to be noticeably slower than other balls in the sport. How does this end up changing the pro game? For this observer, on panel courts, the portable court, and places not at altitude, the game plays significantly slower, which highlights a need for accuracy and shot making. At altitude and/or on cement, the ball plays more “normally” and power players do not appear affected.

– 1/9/23: Despite losing the Longhorn Open final, #3 Conrrado Moscoso ascends to the #1 spot on tour. This is the first time a player from outside the Big-3 countries of the sport has achieved #1, and is a seminal career moment for the Bolivian.

– 1/20/23: For the 2nd time in three years, Rodrigo Montoya is given the

Teporaca de Oro by his home state of Chihuahua for his accomplishments in the sport. Unfortunately he has to miss the Lewis Drug Pro/Am to get the award, costing him valuable ranking points. By season’s end it doesn’t really impact where he ended up; he finished well behind Jake for #3.

– 1/26/23: #12 Mario Mercado is given the inaugural Mark Griffin Sportsman of the Year Award at the Lewis Drug Pro-Am. Griffin first started the Lewis Drug Pro/Am tournament in 1978, and it is the longest running pro event in the country. The award will be presented annually to the player who most exemplifies the spirit of fair play and outstanding athletic performance of Men’s IRT tour professionals. Ironically, Mercado doesn’t play an event the rest of the season.

– 2/19/2023: the IRT has pivoted away from its tiered qualifying system and is going to a straight draw; no more byes into the 16s for the top 8 pros. Everyone starts in the 32s or the 64s if the draw is large enough. I don’t have a dog in this fight, but this seems to me to be an anti-player move, especially for the top 8 guys. Remember, top 8 players sign an agreement that purposely limits their ability to enter non-IRT sanctioned events, and in return they (for nearly 20 years) got protected seeding in return. Without the protected seeding, why agree to limit your own earning potential? It is also an inarguable fact that tiered qualifying is better for lower ranked players as well, for reasons i’ve covered many times in this space. Uninformed observers are convinced that this is a good thing, but you can count on one hand the number of round of 32 matches top eight players have played this year that were even remotely competitive.

– 2/19/23: #1 Moscoso skips the Williams Accounting Open in Atlanta to be part of the festivities of the celebration of Carnival in his home country. Its the only event he misses all season, but it proves to be a massive absence. De La Rosa wins the event and its valuable 600 ranking points, while Moscoso eventually finishes 2nd by just 226 points at season’s end. A semi’s finish or better in Atlanta would have changed the season ending rankings.

– 3/5/23: Rodrigo Montoya becomes the 45th man to ever win an IRT event, topping his doubles partner Mar in the 16s, then topping the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd ranked players (Portillo, Moscoso, and De La Rosa) to win the title in Minnesota. This is finally enough to catapult Montoya, who has long been one of the best players in the world but was never ranked accordingly, into the top 4 where he belongs.

– 3/16/23: despite being in a nip and tuck battle for #1 on tour, DLR skips the Chicago Open to compete instead in a PPA pickleball event in Austin that happened the same weekend. By season’s end, it becomes clear that DLR’s move here is immaterial, but it was a gamble at the time.

– May 2023: Thanks to the large anticipated 2023 slate of events and the distance we’ve now put ourselves from Covid, the tour will be moving away from the rolling 11 tier 1s and back to a rolling 365-day calendar.

– May 2023: a couple of shots across the bow of the IRT player contract are made, as DLR & Landa play in an “Open” tournament in San Antonio while Portillo skips an IRT event (along with Acuna, who is outside the top 😎 to play in the Asian open. Both actions seem to be in violation of the IRT player contract, which stipulates that top 8 players may not play ANY non-IRT event and only a limited number of IRT satellite events per season. A bit later, Portillo takes to Facebook to complain that he had been fined $500 for the action, though the post is later taken down. It does beg a question as to the fairness of the IRT player contract, but the players can’t really do anything until the new year.

– Aug 2023: World singles & Doubles happens in Denver thanks to two years of planning from Jim Hiser, and with the loss of the US Open this is the defacto US Open of the season. It has the biggest draws of the season by far.

– Aug 2023: With the cancellation of the Portland Tourney of Champions as a Tier 1, the tour will have exactly 10 tier 1s/Grand slams by the end of 2023. Per the player

contract, the year end title will be determined by the sum of these 10 events. The 3 competitors for the title (Jake, DLR, Moscoso) each face different challenges in the race to #1: Moscoso missed the Grand Slam, DLR missed Chicago, and Jake has a ton of late 2022 points to defend.

– Sept 2023: Alex Landa announces in a Facebook post that he’ll be retiring as of the last event of the 2023 season from professional racquetball.

– 11/12/2023: Kane Waselenchuk, who had not played professional singles since his Achilles heel tear in September 2022, enters the Boston singles event with little fanfare and advances to the semis, beating #11 Robbie Collins, #6 Adam Manilla, and most notably #3 Conrrado Moscoso with relative ease. He nearly beats #2 Jake Bredenbeck in the semis, but seemed to pick up an injury that hampered his movement, losing in a tiebreaker. Still, its an amazing return to form for the 14-time pro tour champ, and his defeat of Moscoso had huge implications for the year end race.

– 11/13/23: Jake Bredenbeck ascends to #1 ranking on tour for the first time with his finals appearance in Boston.

– 11/20/23: the tour race for #1 is going to be closer than it has been for nearly a decade, so much attention is paid to the machinations of the two remaining events. Thanks to Moscoso’s upset loss in Boston, DLR’s semi final appearance, and Jake’s final’s showing … the end of year race becomes clear. Moscoso cannot win the title. Jake can win the title, but he needs to win Pleasanton and hope that Daniel loses relatively early. DLR can sew up the 2023 title with at least a semis appearance in Pleasanton, or a quarter’s appearance if Jake loses before the final.

– 12/9/23: A Jake Bredenbeck loss in the quarters of the Golden State Open sealed the 2023 title for De La Rosa before he even took the court for his critical quarterfinal against Acuna. Daniel won that match and his semi to resolve any question as to his #1 status, though he ended up losing the finals badly to #2 Moscoso.

– 12/10/23: In the post-game interview after the Golden State Open final, Daniel De La Rosa announced that he will not be “touring full time” in 2024, alluding to his

commitments to “another sport.” There’s little surprise here; he signed an 3-year contract with the Professional Pickleball Association in August which guarantees a salary, benefits, and expense reimbursement to play professional Pickleball. His main sponsor Pro Kennex and Mike Martinez tried to manage the situation on social media by noting that DLR is a “multi sport” sponsored player and has expectations of continuing to play and compete in racquetball, but as they say, we’ll see how it goes.


Now for some commentary on the state of the IRT at the end of 2023 and heading into 2024.

Despite having 10 tier 1s in 2023, the tour saw a pretty steep decline in overall participation. In 2022, there were 245 players who competed in one of the IRT’s events; that number dropped to just 133 in 2023. That’s more than 100 players who didn’t travel or didn’t enter an event who had a year prior. Draw sizes were way down; at the beginning of 2022 draws were routinely in the 40s; by the end of 2023 the tour was struggling to get 25 players. Denver and the portable court helped bump things up (those two events got 56 and 48 players respectively) but there’s a big gap of players missing.

We’ve definitely seen a changing of the guard as long-time touring pros step back (Carson, Beltran, Landa, Franco, Mercado). We’re also seeing younger players who were touring relatively full time in 2022 stop touring (Fernandez, Keller, Garay). But we’re also seemingly missing a lot of the international guys who frequently traveled to every event, and we’re not seeing the younger Mexican’s coming over the border as much as we have in year’s past. So, that’s a problem.

A bigger problem is the loss of events. Here’s a quick list of IRT tier 1 stops that we seem to have “lost” just in the last couple of years:

– Longhorn Open in Jan

– The Lou Bradley in Feb

– Williams Accounting/Suivant Consulting in Feb

– Where’s the SoCal Open, usually in April?

– The Syosset Open in NY in May

– World Singles/Denver won’t happen in August 2024

– The Capital Classic in Severna Park in Sept.

– The US Open is not likely to happen in 2024

– We used to have an Arizona Open in Oct

– The Sarasota Open/Dovetail in Nov?

– Pelham ToC went down to a satellite this year in Dec.

Not to mention events we used to have regularly in St. Louis or Cincinnati or San Antonio or in Canoga Park. The tour has picked up some new events (Tracktown, Pleasanton, Boston) but not enough to offset all these losses. And it makes me worry about the 2024 season. Will the IRT even get to 6 events this coming year?

I’m not sure what the answer is. But the tour may be in some existential trouble. Many of the tour’s investors were also its regular tourney directors, and they’ve stepped back from sponsoring events. The IRT depends on local tourney directors to raise funds and make these events happen, and the decline of tournaments in general has fed into t his issue. DLR said he’s stepping back from touring … but if there’s just a handful of events, and he manages to make them all while playing the PPA tour full time … he could end up having the best of both worlds.

Lots to sort out in 2024. But I think its fair to say we havn’t seen the men’s tour face this many question marks since the fall of 1988 when it completely collapsed.

IRT 2023 Final Season Player analysis: Outside the top 10

Landa hangs them up Photo US Open 2019, Photographer Kevin Savory

Here’s a look at notables who finished outside the top 10 this year, with some thoughts on who could be making a move in 2024.

– #11 Alejandro Landa : Landa retires from full time touring with an impressive career resume. He’s 35, but really didn’t start touring full-time until 2017. From there he ripped off four seasons in the top 3, won four events, made another four finals, and steps away with a career W/L of 158-93. He’ll make for an interesting hall of fame case some day, but for now the tour loses one of its most passionate players. For me he’s always a “what if” he had played the tour full time for his entire 20s, not just the last couple of seasons. I suspect he’d have a career more like what DLR has now in terms of total wins. Could he have won a year end title? Maybe; he has a winning career h2h over DLR (10-8 across all competitions) but would have still been in the Kane era during his own peak. Bigger question; does he play US Nationals in Arizona in February? Or is he “done” done?

– #13 Javier Mar continues to play the tour part time, around his “real job” and periodically wreak havoc on draws. This season he got wins over top 10 players like Parrilla, Landa, and Acuna to shake up draws and played Moscoso tough in a 10,12 semis loss in Austin for his best result. #13 is his career best season ending ranking, but is this as good as we can expect from Mar? He dealt with a hernia injury for a big part of the year as well, meaning he probably could have been even better. If he played the tour full time, I have no doubt he’d be in the #6-7 range. But he never has, so mid-teens seems like what to expect.

– #15 Jaime Martell had his career best showing, finishing #15 on the back of several main draws and one quarter final result. He has a niche reffing the back end of the events and has connections to IRT commissioner @Pablo Fajre from their WRT days. I could see him making more events in 2024 and pushing up a few spots in the rankings.

– #16 Erick Trujillo missed just one event in 2023 but never advanced past the round of 16, which puts his #16 rank exactly where he should be. He’s still in the 21U division, but has losses to his fellow 21u countrymen Ramos, Gastelum, and Nieto lately and didn’t qualify for Junior Worlds this year. And none of those guys are as good as the current Mexican 18U champ Jorge Gutierrez Ortiz. What’s next for him? He seems likely to stay in this general range 15-16.

– #20 Rocky Carson played in just three events this year as he stopped touring full time; he played in the two California events plus Denver. He shook up the Pleasanton draw a bit, taking out Mar and Parrilla before being downed by Montoya. He’s a sure-fire hall of famer, just waiting a couple years to become eligible. I’m guessing he’ll continue to travel to WOR events (where he gets paid) and to California-based events (where his costs are limited) for a while. I could also see him back at Nationals since its in AZ and it’s not a total one and done for him.

– #22 @Kane Waselenchuk returned to the singles court more than a year after blowing out his Achilles heel tendon, and he made an impression for sure. In Boston he waxed #6 Manilla before shocking #3 Moscoso, then ran out of gas in the semis against Jake. Then in Pleasanton different court conditions and an opportunistic Moscoso led to a (10),4,4 defeat. Kane has to be happy though about his status: he’s shown that even at 42, his pinpoint serving accuracy and remaining power can take him past most players on tour without breaking a sweat. The bigger question will be, what happens when he runs into the top 4 regularly? We had too small of a sample size this season to really know (a win over Moscoso, a loss to Jake and a loss to Moscoso). If Kane plays all the events in 2024, I have no doubt he’s finishing in the top 4, but I doubt he can consistently get past Moscoso, DLR, or Jake. But i’ve been wrong about him before, so we’ll see. 2024 prediction: #3 or #4

– #24 @Diego García . Garcia has taken over the title of, “Best player who doesn’t tour full time.” Mar had the belt for a bit, Montoya before him, then Landa for a while, then before Landa it was probably someone like Polo or Mejia. They join a group that included guys like Sweeney and Muller back in the 1990s. As for Garcia now, he beat Portillo twice this year, had a couple other wins over tour regulars when he did show, and took Montoya to a breaker in the quarters of Denver. But Garcia’s problem is money; he doesn’t have enough to travel up here to play full time. If he did, I have no doubt he’d be top 6. But as it is, we’ll see how many events he can get to.

– #25 @Sebastian Franco only played 2 events this year, and after being a mainstay at the back of the top 10 for the better part of the last 10 years seems to have made the understandable decision to focus his efforts on earning a living for his wife and two kids.

– #27 @Mario Mercado , like his fellow Maryland-resident and Colombian teammate Franco, also has stepped way back from touring after 10 years of playing. Mercado’s knee deep in @Formulaflow.

– #33 Carlos Keller Vargas continues to be a force internationally, but after peaking at #12 two seasons ago has stepped back to his prior pattern of traveling up for just one or two events a year. Meanwhile, he continues to dominate internationally, making the finals of PARC and the semis of the Pan Am games, with wins over Garcia twice, Acuna, and Murray. Hope to see more of him.

– #39 @Elias Nieto only played two IRT events, but continues to impress internationally and could push for a mid-teen ranking with enough events given his h2h record against Trujillo. Same for #42 @Diego Gastelum ; both players have big time promise and hope to see them more.

– #40 @Cole Sendry continues to get reps on tour and internationally in the 18U space, and seems like one of the best bets for the next USA player to matriculate out of juniors.

– #45 @Alvaro Beltran has had father time catch up to him w/r/t singles; he’s still out there playing doubles when he can.

– #54 Gerson Miranda is a great 21U junior from Bolivia, the latest in a long -line of Bolivian junior national champs who could make noise. But, as with many of his countrymen, lack of funding makes it hard for him to tour regularly.

– #70 Sebastian Fernandez quietly stopped touring, which is a shame given the promise he showed while hanging around the top 16.

– #72 Jordan Barth certainly had vocal supporters upon his return from pro baseball; the former dominant junior national champ played one event this year.

– Two former touring pro regulars based in Oregon Charlie Pratt and @Tony Carson

played one event in their hometown and finished tied for #100.

– LPRT #4 Erika Manilla finished at #108 after entering a satellite and going a round or two.

– Bringing up the rear of the standings: Scott McClellan , former lead ref on tour, who entered the Longhorn Open in his home town and going one-and done.


That’s it for the player recaps. Next post will catch up the news from the year and then talk 2024.

IRT 2023 Final Top 10 Standings Analysis

De La Rosa captures his 3rd straight year end title. Photo Golden State Open, Ken Fife.

Hello racquetball fans and Happy New Year! We’ve come to the end of the 2023 season, so here’s my regular end of season deep dive into the players and the tour in general.

I’ll do this analysis in three parts: first (today) will be the top 10. Next will be notables from the players ranked 11th and onward. Then I’ll finish up with a recap of the news events from the season along with some editorialization. Along the way I’ll offer predictions for 2024.

Without further ado.

#1: Daniel De la Rosa finished #1 for the third straight season, tying him with Charlie Brumfield on the all time list of pro title winners. DLR played in 9 of the 10 events on the season and showed some pretty good consistency: 3 wins, 4 finals, and 2 semis. Zero early round upset losses; basically he was a lock to make the semis the moment he showed up. He went 30-6 on the season. He now has 12 career tourney wins (12th all time) and his career W/L now sits at 221-98 (15th all time). However, the elephant in the room (like it is for a lot of racquetball fans) is PIckleball. DLR is committed to the PPA tour for 2024 and beyond, with guaranteed salary, stipends for health insurance, and travel expenses. Its too good of a deal to pass up, and if there’s a competing event to a 2024 IRT event, DLR likely misses it. There aren’t too many IRT events on the books yet for 2024, but we know for sure there’s a conflict for March’s Shamrock shootout. Because of this, DLR has already hedged his bets and let people know he’s not going to tour “full time” to manage expectations. I predict he’ll miss enough events to knock him out of the top spot but he stays in the top 4 by season’s end. 2024 prediction: #3 or #4, depending on how many events he makes.

#2: Conrrado Moscoso : Conrrado had an excellent season: 4 wins (1 more than DLR), 2 finals, 1 semi and 2 quarter final losses, but its the one event he missed that crushed him in the end; he skipped the one grand slam event the IRT had in 2023, costing him significant points. He finished 2nd by around 266 points, but a semis finish at a grand slam is worth 330 points. He also suffered two quarter-final losses, which are tough to overcome when your rival for the top spot is essentially unbeatable prior to the semis. Nonetheless, Moscoso is well positioned for 2024. He now sits 5th overall in career W/L percentage at 80-22 (behind only Kane, Marty, Sudsy, and Brumfield) and he now sits tied for 14th ever in Tier1 wins. Both of these figure to be improved upon in 2024, as Moscoso beat #1 DLR in three of their four meetings in 2023 (all finals). Most pundits believe Conrrado is the world’s best player, and I believe he’ll ascend to #1 in 2024 and stay there. 2024 Prediction: #1

– #3 @Jake Bredenbeck had a season for the ages. After grinding out the tour for years at the fringes of the top 10, Jake flipped a switch this year and vaulted himself into the top 4. For nearly the entire season, his only vanquishers were the two men ranked above him, and his consistent results pushed him to the #1 ranking by November. In fact, he still maintained a shot at the year end title going into the season’s final event, something that even Moscoso couldn’t say. Jake may have slipped to #3 on points with the upset loss in the Pleasanton quarters, but he’s now a force to be reckoned with for the time being. Jake’s biggest issue going forward will be his age: he’s now 32, and is entering a critical age for pro racquetball players, especially big guys. I think he’ll hang on for 2024, especially given his commitment to fitness. 2024 prediction: #2.

– #4 Rodrigo Montoya After years and years of being “the guy nobody wanted to run into early,” Montoya finally pushed his way into the tour’s top 4 and seems set to stay there as long as he can. In 2023 he became the 45th man ever to win a Tier 1 and had a consistent set of results: 1 win, 1 final, 4 semi-finals. He has kept his “bad losses” to a minimum, and seems set to stick as a top seed. Montoya is the rare player who’s had success against Moscoso in the past (he’s 5-8 against him across IRT and IRF events, though Moscoso has had the upper hand lately), meaning a weekend matchup between the pair guarantees fireworks. My 2024 prediction for Montoya kind of rests on his schedule: he’s has a full time career that has always made it tough for him to make 100% of the events. I’ll bet he misses one here or there and finishes #3 or #4 again.

– #5: Andree Parrilla took a distinct step back this season, starting it ranked #2 and ending it at #5. Parrilla did get a 3rd career win, but it was an anomaly for him this season. He lost in the 16s or quarters 7 out of 9 events this year, getting a couple of really unlucky round of 16 matches against Carson and Mar. But the real story for Andree was the bugaboo of his quarter final matchups; all season he found himself losing at the QF stage to players who he had previously better success. In this respect, #5 makes perfect sense for his year end ranking, and it seems like a pretty good guess for 2023; he’ll continue to run into top four players at this juncture and there’s now a talent gap between them and the rest of the tour. Parrilla will be “the best of the rest” again in 2024 and finish #5 again.

– #6 Adam Manilla : after years of sitting outside the top 10, Manilla rather quietly put together a really consistent season and launched himself to the #6 spot by year’s end. He did this on the back of 7 quarter final appearances in 10 events, overcoming a few round of 16 upsets and staying the course. Adam’s challenge is, those seven quarter final losses were all to the top 3 players on tour: he lost to Moscoso 3 times, DLR 3 times, and Jake once. In order to move up, Manilla needs to get wins over these top guys, and that doesn’t seem like its in the cards right now. I think #6 was as far as he can get and he may very well slip a bit depending on what the guys ranked 7-10 manage to do next year. 2024 prediction: #7.

– #7 Eduardo Portillo slipped from last season’s #4 ranking down to #7 as he missed several events as he continues to work on his commercial pilot training. He also took a step back this season in terms of his finishes: he’s made at least one tourney final in each of the previous three seasons, but never made it there this year. In this respect, he’s had better finishing than the rest of the guys in the 5-8 range, but his absences keep him back. I don’t know what his work situation will be in 2024, but I suspect a full-time airline pilot is not going to have the same kind of schedule flexibility as a pre-college kid. Without knowing anything else, i’m going to guess he continues to hang around in the 7-8 range due to missed events.

– #8: Andres Acuna just finished his best season ever, making six quarterfinals a season after getting past the quarters just once. However, like Manilla and Parrilla above him, he never got any further. To make matters worse he’s mired in the #8/#9 seed slot, routing him into the #1 seed tourney after tourney and making it tough to move up. However, he’s clearly taken a step up on tour, and seems set to make all the events and continue to compete. I’m going to predict he hangs around in the top 10 and finishes #8 again.

– #9 Alan Natera was basically an unknown on tour a year ago, finishing 25th. Not this year; he played every event, made every satellite, and got himself into two quarter finals to finish in the top 10 for the first time. He’s a hard worker and has been improving, but Its hard to see him getting past the Acuna/Manilla/Portillo bunch ahead of him. I predict he finishes 8 or 9 in 2024.

– #10: Samuel Murray took a distinct step back on tour this year, missing three events (the first he’d missed in years) and slipping from #6 last year to #10 this year. He’s still a threat to make the semis, when he’s on, but now that he’s on the wrong side of 30 one has to wonder if he’s destined to push for the top 10 regularly anymore. He continues to rule in Canada though, ensuring his national team spot for the 11th straight year, so he’ll continue to play. If he doesn’t miss events in 2024, I can see him getting back into the 6-7 range. 2024 prediction: #6.

We’ll review notables outside the top 10 in the next post.

IRT 2023 Year End Rankings published to website

Hello Racquetball fans. A quick note to inform the community that I’ve done the typical year-end data upload into for the just ended IRT season. Here’s some links that now show the updated data, along with some of the artifacts I maintain for the sport.

– Year End Rankings loaded into the database:

– Season Summary Report: . This report has a breakdown of finishes for all players, is sorted by Wins, then Finals, then Semis, etc.

– All the season-level reports are now of course complete for the year. You can get a list of finals, draw sizes,

All the static files of data have also been updated:

– Landmark Tour history bullet points:

– List of Year end Title Winners:

– Detailed tour history/year summary:…/year_end… . I use this file to do a separate post coming soon where I detail the happenings of the season.

– Number of Overall Titles:…/number_of_titles… DLR wins his 3rd and moves into a tie with Charlie Brumfield (who won 3 pro and an additional 2 amateur national titles in the early 1970s).

– Major Championship Winners: . Only one major this year, the Suivant Consulting Grand Slam in Atlanta.


Look for my big recap of the IRT season in this space soon, including player by player commentary and predictions for 2024.

IRT Golden State Open Recap

Moscoso wins the final event of 2023 but it isn’t enough to get him the year end titie. Photo US Open 2019, Photographer Kevin Savory

Congrats to your Pro winners on the weekend:

– Singles: @conrramoscosoortiz

– Doubles: Rodrigo Montoya and Javier Mar

Moscoso secures the last event of the 2023 season, his 8th career title. This moves him into a tie for 14th overall with none other than @John Ellis , who was recognized this weekend for his induction into the USA Racquetball hall of fame. See for a full list of title winners in the history of the tour.

However, the story line of the weekend was @DaDaniel De la Rosa , losing finalist but who wrapped up his 3rd year end title in a row. The other story line, of course, was the return of the Glass Court to the pro sport. Congrats to tournament organizers Adam Manilla and Bobby Horn for securing the funding and expending the effort to make this happen. The IRT draw was one of the largest we’ve seen since the last time the court was in use, and it looked awesome. Thanks as always to @Keith Minor and Kwm Gutterman for your ongoing support of the sport, and for housing the court.

R2 Sports App home page for event:


Lets review the notable matches in the Singles draw.

Singles Match report in the PRS database:


In the qualifiers, some interesting/surprising results:

– Up and coming Mexican 18U Cristhian Sanchez took out top amateur Martin Anthony to move into the main draw.

– Former WRT #1 Alejandro Cardoza topped Guatemalan international Edwin Galicia to get into the main draw.

– 13-time title winner @Kane Waselenchuk moved into the main draw as expected, topping fellow Texan Craig Clements .


In the 32s:

– @Sam Bredenbeck got a nice win over Bolivian vet Kadim Carrasco to force his way into the 16s.

– 2-time IRT champ Rocky Carson reminded current tour players that he can still ball, topping #12 @Javier Mar in a breaker to move on.

– Guatemalan #1 @JuJuan Salvatiera surprised #13 Robert Collins to move on.

– Kane, seeded 19th in this event, cruised past Mexican 21U @Erick Trujillo 7,7 to get into the 16s and setup a rematch of Boston’s showdown with Moscoso.


In the 16s:

– @Andres Acuna dominated Alan Natera in the 8/9 match 6,10, setting up the expected quarter final battle with DLR.

– Rocky shocked #5 Andree Parrilla 11,9 to move into the quarters.

– In a very highly anticipated match, #3 Moscoso faced off against Waselenchuk. To this observer, Kane wasn’t looking nearly as sharp in Pleasanton as he did in Boston, as evidenced by Trujillo’s ability to get points on him in the earlier round. The glass court plays slow as well, which contributes (along with the slower ball) to balls being up and gettable to an extent that wasn’t the case on Boston’s cement walls. Kane controlled game one for long stretches, but Moscoso kept it close and ended up losing 15-10. I was critical of Moscoso’s lack of serving diversity and his game plan being exposed by the tactical genius of Kane ahead of this match, but all credit to Conrrado here; he came out firing in game two and blitzed Kane 15-4 in a one-way traffic game that continued into the tiebreaker. Final score: (10),4,4. I believe we saw the Bolivian get over a mental hurdle and just gain confidence as the match wore on, freeing him to go for his typical “shoot with abandon” mentality and, once he started hitting those shots, there was nothing anyone could do.

– @Eduardo Portillo topped @Alejandro Landa 10,3 in what was Landa’s final pro singles match as a full time touring pro. We’ll do a career retrospective of Landa in this space at a later date.


In the Quarters, we got some match results with historical implications.

– #1 Daniel DE LA Rosa , who went into this event knowing that a semi finals appearance would seal the 2023 title, took the court knowing that the results before him already sealed the deal (more on that later). Perhaps distracted, he dropped a game to #8 Acuna but ground back to take a close breaker 11-8.

– #4 Rodrigo Montoya blitzed Carson 15-1 in the first and then held on 15-13 for the two game win to send the veteran Cinderella home.

– #3 Moscoso sent home your host on the weekend Manilla 6,11

– #2 @Jake Bredenbeck , who went into this event knowing that he needed a tourney win plus some help, was shocked by #7 Portillo 10,13 to end his season. This result ended up officially sealing the 2023 title for DLR and sent Jake home with a bitter taste.


In the Semis

– DLR made fast work of Montoya 8,7

– Moscoso blasted Lalo 6,2 to setup an entertaining final.


In the Finals, Moscoso played a comprehensive lights out match, crushing the new #1 DLR 4,3 to take the title. Daniel had little response to Moscoso’s dominance, and the Bolivian made a bit of a statement with the win. Despite finishing #2, Moscoso actually out-titled Daniel this year 4-3 (though Daniel made 4 other finals to Moscoso’s two, demonstrating a bit more consistency throughout the year).

In the post-game interview, Daniel announced that he will not be “touring full time” in 2024, alluding to his commitments to “another sport.” There’s little surprise here; he signed an exclusive 3-year contract with the Professional Pickleball Association in August which guarantees a salary, benefits, and expense reimbursement to an extent where DLR could not say no. His main sponsor Pro Kennex and Mike Martinez tried to manage the situation on social media by noting that DLR is a “multi sport” sponsored player and has expectations of continuing to play and compete in racquetball, but as they say, we’ll see how it goes.

A quick glance at the 2024 known schedules for Racquetball and Pickleball right now shows that

– DLR is free to play the Lewis Drug (no conflicts)

– may have a conflict for USA Nationals on 2/11/24 weekend if he plays the MLP,

– would have a MLP conflict for Minnesota HoF tourney

– Definitely has a PPA conflict with 3/17 Papa Nicholas event (which is also Beach Bash in 2024)

So we’ll see. The biggest question may just be how many tier1s can the IRT get in 2024. We’ve lost the Longhorn Open, I’ve seen no word from the Atlanta guys (Suivant and Williams) about their regular February event, the SoCal Open isn’t on the books for April, Denver is not happening this year, Tracktown & Boston were first time events in 2023 that may or may not return, there’s no guarantee of a US Open in 2024, we’ve seemingly lost the Sarasota/Dovetail open, the organizers of the DC-area Capital Classic have pulled back. NY Open is gone along with its sponsor from the sport, and the Pelham TOC downgraded to a satellite. So, DLR may not have to “tour full time” to play a full slate of 2024 events if there’s only a handful.


Points Implications of results

As noted above, DLR sealed the year end title (his 3rd) with Jake’s quarter final loss. More interestingly is that Moscoso’s win coupled with Jake’s early loss has jumped Conrrado up to #2 for the season. The only other last minute moves in the top 10 saw Acuna bump up to #8, pushing the absent Murray back to #10 for the year. Landa’s final season ends with him just getting pushed out of the top 10.

We’ll do a full comprehensive recap of the season later on this month.


Doubles review

Match report in the PRS database:

Montoya and Mar captured another doubles title as a team. Its their 3rd pro doubles title this season and their 7th together professionally. This is on top of their 2023 Pan Am games gold, their 2022 Worlds, and their 2019 Pan Am gold medals as a partnership.


Open Singles, other notable draws

– @Diego Gastelum took an all Mexican U21 final against Rico. Both players got walkovers from Guatemalans in the semis, possibly due to travel issues.

– Alan Natera / Victor Koliczew got a win in the Open Doubles final when NorCal duo Torres and Reynolds withdrew.

– Christie Noler took the 4-player Women’s Open RR

– Sonya_Shetty_/_Victoria_Rodriguez took the women’s Open draw

– Shane Diaz / Will Reynolds: took Mixed Open


Thanks for all the streaming on the weekend, especially from broadcasters Favio Soto, Steve Schulze, Pablo Fajre and the IRTLive crew . Thanks to guest broadcasters all weeked like @Brian Pineda and @Sudsy Monchik , who make it great to watch along from home.


Next up?

Per our handy master racquetball calendar ……/1V6OTid6rZ356voXVkoV2sN7KMMb…/

We’ll cover the LPRT and WOR events later this week, then that’s a wrap for 2023!



IRT Golden State Open Preview

Can DLR finish off the title for 2023? Photo US Open 2019, Photographer Kevin Savory

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:

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


Projected Qtrs:

– 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.


Doubles review

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

John Pelham Memorial Tournament of Champions Recap

Montoya spoils both Jake and Conrrado’s title chances. Photo Kevin Savory 2022 Portland IRT event

Congrats to your Pro singles winner on the weekend: Rodrigo Montoya

The Pelham Memorial was dropped from a full tier 1 (which it has been for a few years) down to an IRT Satellite event for the 2023 season, but still featured a really solid draw with 4 of the top 5 players in the world all advancing to the semis. A reminder: non tier 1s are NOT loaded to the Pro Racquetball Stats database, but i’m covering his b/c of the strength of the draw and because of the year end race implications.

R2 Sports App home page for event:


Lets review the notable matches in the Singles draw.

In the 16s, the top 8 seeds advanced as expected but we got some solid matches. I the 8/9, @Sam Bredenbeck pushed Kadim Carrasco before falling in a breaker. Montoya faced off against former IRT tour veteran Charlie Pratt and advanced. Jaime Martell faced former tour regular @Tony Carson and advanced in two closer games 12,10.


In the Quarters, again all top 4 seeds advanced but a couple of the matches were closer than expected. Alan Natera pushed #3 Andree Parrilla in the first game before Parrilla advanced in two. Martell took a game off of #2 Conrrado Moscoso before the Bolivian took control.


In the Semis, two upsets.

– #1 @Jake Bredenbeck , who was trying to win this satellite to put as much additional pressure on Daniel De la Rosa heading into Pleasanton, was upset in two 15-14 games against Parrilla. Jake’s going to be kicking himself for having game point in both games but failing to convert.

– #2 Moscoso, who is still technically capable of winning the year end event, lost easily to a familiar nemesis Montoya. Rodrigo has a number of career wins over Conrrado and handled him easily here 7,11.

In the Finals, Montoya took out Parrilla in a tie-breaker that was cut short by an injury that forced Parrilla to retire.


Points Implications of results

– Jake adds some points to his total, but not really enough to trouble DLR for the year end title. When the 2022 Portland points expire, Jake will trail De la Rosa by roughly 211 points, which means that Jake will have to “make up” 211 points on Daniel in Pleasanton to earn the title. Jake will need a shocking early round upset from DLR and will need to win in Pleasanton to really have a shot at the title. If Daniel gets to the semis … he’ll have the title sewn up.


Open Singles, other notable draws

– There was a nice little LPRT exhibition that included Montse Mejia, Carla Munoz, Michelle Key, and Erika Manilla.

– Men’s Open Singles was andres gomez taking out Oregon local player @Sunji Spencer in a tiebreaker.

– Men’s Open Doubles featured two solid teams in the final: Martel/Natera versus Pratt & Tony Carson. The mexicans took out the Americans in a great 11-8 tiebreaker match.

– Mixed Open was taken by @Will Reynolds and Shane Diaz, who got a walkover against Key & Rhys Anderson.


Thanks for all the streaming on the weekend, especially from broadcasters Favio Soto, Pablo Fajre and the IRTLive crew .

Thanks to the Tourney Directors Dave Azuma and Jeff Clark for putting this event on!


Next up?

Per our handy master racquetball calendar …

Next weekend is the big finale of the 2023 IRT season in Pleasanton. @Adam Manilla

and Bobby Horn have the portable court up and running, and the tournament should be amazing. Then, the weekend following the Ladies are back in action in my hometown DC area Xmas classic, a tournament I used to help run 25 years ago.



International Racquetball Tour


IRT Boston Rally for the Warriors Wrap-up

Parrilla gets back into the winner’s circle in Boston Photo 2019 US Open via Kevin Savory

Congrats to your IRT Singles Pro winner on the weekend: Andree Parrilla

Parrilla surprises the field, taking out the #1, #2 and #4 seeds en route to the title. This is Andree’s 3rd career IRT tier 1 title, and he becomes the 5th different player to take a tier 1 title this year. Each of the top 5 ranked players on tour have taken a title this year, after 6 different players won last year, continuing to show the diversity on tour that we have right now.

R2 Sports App home page for event:


Lets review the notable matches in the Singles draw.

Singles Match report in the PRS database:


In the 32s:

– 14-time IRT season-ending champion @Kane Waselenchuk made his return to pro singles, nearly 14 months after he tore his Achilles heel, and on the weekend of his 42nd birthday. He had entered Denver in August but pulled out last minute. Not this time, as he took the court against fellow lefty veteran Robert collins to open the event. Seeded 22nd out of 22, Kane made fast work of the #11 seed Collins 5,5 to announce his return to the sport.


In the 16s:

– #8 @Andres Acuña got a nice win against the streaking Alan Natera 13,13.

– Kane survived his first real test against a top ranked opponent, taking out #6 Adam Manilla with ease 2,4.

– #7 Samuel Murray was taken to a breaker by veteran lefty #10 Thomas Carter but rebounded to advance in three.


In the Quarters:

– #1 @Daniel De La Rosa was pushed to the limit by Costa Rican Acuna, advancing 14,14. It doesn’t get much closer than that, and it makes this observer wonder if DLR is entirely “into” this tourney.

– #5 Parrilla reverses a recent trend of losing to his long time Mexican Rival #4 Rodrigo Montoya , winning an 11-7 breaker to move into the semis.

– In the match that I, along with many neutrals wanted to see, former #1 King Kane trounced #3 @Conrrado Moscoso 8,6 to move on. Kane mixed up power and touch masterfully, using power-based accuracy on his serves to force attackable returns from Conrrado, and then using his amazing touch in the front court to dink balls away for winners. Moscoso was unable to adapt his all-attack game and had no answers really for Kane’s approach. The scores probably weren’t as close as they indicated, as game two was mostly one way traffic once it became clear Conrrado had no answer. This was a real eye-opening result for this observer; i was certain a 42-yr old Kane coming off a massive injury would fall here, and It really makes me question the status of the current top ranked pros in the game’s hierarchy if Kane can win so easily. More importantly to the 2023 points race, this early round loss combined with DLR’s advancing to the semi most likely sealed the 2023 title for DLR; more on that later.

– #2 Jake Bredenbeck survived match point against versus Big Canada Murray to move on to the semis for the 8th time in 9 tournaments this year, continuing to be the most consistent player on tour.


In the Semis

– #1 De La Rosa frittered away game one 15-14 against Parrilla and then played catchup most of game 2 before losing 14,13 and missing out on an opportunity to really seal the 2023 title.

– #2 Bredenbeck showed more of a game plan against Kane than the opponents prior, but still had to survive another match point against in game two to get this to a tiebreaker. There, a clearly injured Kane limped his way to an 11-4 game3 loss that he probably should have just forfeited. Nonetheless, its Jake who advances to the title game.

In the Finals, Andree and Jake gave a fantastic showing, with the game going to the very end. Andree takes the title with an 11-10 thriller.


Points Implications of results

In the short term, I believe making the finals will vault Jake to the #1 spot on tour, if just barely over DLR. I say “I believe” because my working XLS doesn’t take into account the slight points totals that the players earn for losing in three. If this happens, it’d be the first time Jake has officially ascended to #1, even if briefly.

In the longer term (i.e. for the rest of the season), DLR increases his “season to date” points lead over Moscoso to 495 points (his lead over Jake is 540 points once you drop the lowest scores for all players). This means the following: If Pleasanton is a normal Tier 1 event in terms of points awarded, then DLR has now sewn up the year end title for 2023. If however Pleasanton is counted as a grand slam (which awards 600 points to the winner), the title technically is still up for grabs. There’s also a chance that Boston counts as a Grand Slam as well (though doubtful, since there was no money in Pro Doubles), but we’ll have to see what happens when the rankings run on Tuesday.


Open Singles, other notable draws

– In Open Singles Trujillo defeated Murray (who was “allowed” to enter Open since he has dropped out of the IRT top 😎 in the final. Top NE players Flores and Keegan Smith were in the semis.

– Open Doubles: competed on Sunday, Flores teamed with Orlando Cabana to take the doubles title, beating Alok Mehta and Erick Cuevas in the final.


Thanks for all the streaming on the weekend, especially from broadcasters @FavFavio , Steve Schulze ,Pablo Fajre and the IRTLive crew

Thanks to the Tourney Director @Stuart Solomon or putting this event on!

Reminder to Players! Please like and follow this page so that when I tag you, you see it. Facebook will only retain tags of people that like/follow a page, which means lots of you are not getting the notoriety of getting tagged and noticed on Facebook. If your name is here and it isn’t tagged … it probably means I attempted to tag you but Facebook stripped it.


Next up?

Per our handy master racquetball calendar ……/1V6OTid6rZ356voXVkoV2sN7KMMb…/

The LPRT visits Chicago next weekend, and World Juniors has already started down in Tarja Bolivia. After that, we have 3 more pro events to finish out the calendar year; a satellite IRT in Portland, the Pleasanton IRT event, then the LPRT returning to Severna Park for the Xmas classic.

IRT Boston Preview

DLR can lock up the 2023 title in Boston. Maybe. Photo US Open 2019, Photographer Kevin Savory

After months away, the IRT is back in action, heading to Boston for the 2023 Rally for our Warriors. The LPRT was at the same club (Wayside Athletic in Marlborough) back in March, but it has been some time since the Men’s pros were in the Boston area. You have to go all the way back to March of 2007, for the Red Swain Memorial for the last time the IRT was in Massachusetts, so congrats to Stuart Solomon for putting this together.

R2 Sports App link:

The draw is a bit diminished for this event (22 pros are in town, probably a side effect of the expense of the Pan Am games and other travel this summer), but the stakes couldn’t be higher. With just this event, the satellite in Portland, and then the season finisher in Pleasanton, there’s very little time to settle the 2023 year end title. Assuming that this event and Pleasanton are regular Tier1 tour stops, #1 seed @Daniel De La Rosa can secure the year end title with a win here in Boston. however, #2 Jake Bredenbeck and #3 Conrrado Moscoso can both really put a monkey wrench into those plans with winning performances here.

Also interesting: none other than Kane Waselenchuk is in this draw. He turns 42 today. We havn’t seen Kane in singles since his Achilles injury in Sept 2022. Will he compete? He entered singles in Denver but withdrew, so it remains to be seen. If he competes, he’s seeded 22nd out of 22 by virtue of having expired all his previous rankings points, and is scheduled to play #11 Robert collins at 4pm EST. If he wins, he plays into #6 Adam Manilla and then to #3 Moscoso, so that’d be a heck of a test for him.


Lets preview the draw. Only the singles draw has been released as of this writing.

Two top 10 players are absent: Portillo and Landa. this slightly changes the projected round of 16 matches for the top 3 players, which could play into the year end standings heavily.


In the 32s, some notable matches:

– Should be fun to see what Mexican Axel Barojas can do against the Chilean national Rafael Gatica

– Kane should have a decent shot against Collins in a battle of veteran pro lefties.

– top New England player @JoJose Flores should move on against IRT regular @Jim Douglas


round of 16:

– The 8/9 matchup between Alan Natera and Andres Acuña could be great. Natera has been on fire lately and could push the Costa Rican here.

– #4 Rodrigo Montoya will get an early test against Erick Trujillo , who has seen his progress stall a bit after some eye opening early results.

– If he plays, and if he advances, all eyes would be on #22 Kane versus #6 Adam Manilla in this round. It’d be another matchup of lefties, but a different battle for Kane. Manilla is fresh off a gold medal in Chile in Mixed, and has been getting some pretty solid results lately. He beat Diego Garcia in Chile, he’s got pro wins over Murray and Acuna this season, and he took out Jake at USA Nationals. This would be a great litmus test for Kane’s comeback, but I suspect Adam would be too much for him.


Projected Qtrs:

– #1 DLR over the Natera/Acuna winner. I don’t think either player has what it takes to take out Daniel right now.

– #4 Montoya over #5 @Andree Parrilla ; these long-time adversaries are now settling into the realization that Montoya has the upper hand in their rivalry.

– #3 Moscoso versus the Kane/Manilla winner. Well, I’m certain that neutrals (myself included) would love to see Kane versus Conrrado. It would certainly put and end to the social media campaign that believes that Kane still would beat anyone who he plays. Many believe that, even if he got by Manilla, Kane would be overpowered at this juncture against a player who is probably the most talented in the world.

– #2 @Jake Bredenbeck over Big Canada #7 Samuel Murray


– DLR over Montoya. Montoya does have a handful of wins against DLR in their careers. I also think DLR knows precisely what he needs to do to secure the title and will be rather motivated here.

– Moscoso over Jake; Jake may be seeded #2, and Jake may have beaten Conrrado in their last meeting in Chicago, but Conrrado’s the better player.


– Moscoso over DLR. Moscoso is on a run, fresh off Pan Am gold, and looks unstoppable. He wins Boston to force Pleasanton to count.


Doubles review: no draws as of this publishing.


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!

International Racquetball Tour

#irt #lprt #wor

IRT Tracktown Pro-Am Recap

DLR inches closer to his 3rd straight pro title. Photo US Open 2019, Photographer Kevin Savory

Congrats to your pro winners on the weekend:

– Singles: Daniel De La Rosa

– Doubles: De la Rosa & Alex Landa

A double on the weekend for DLR, which couldn’t come at a better time as the 2023 season nears its close and he tries to go for a 3rd straight pro title.

R2 Sports App home page for event:


Lets review the notable matches in the Singles draw.

Singles Match report in the PRS database:

In the 32s, the only real notable match was the strong return to the singles court of @Alvaro Beltran , who took out #13 Robert collins with ease 2,11. While we’ve seen Alvi play some doubles since his shock elbow injury last October, this is the first time he’s taken the singles court on the IRT since last October.


In the 16s:

– In the always close 8/9 match, @Samuel Murray took out Alex Landa in a battle of former top 4 players who have both slipped down the rankings as of late.

– #5 Eduardo Portillo had to dig deep to top the red-hot #12 @Alan Natera in a breaker.

– #3 DLR was surprisingly taken to a breaker by his young Mexican rival Erick Cuevas before moving on.

– #11 Thomas Carter shocked #6 Andree Parrilla 15-2 in the first game, but Parrilla rebounded to advance.

– #7 Adam Manilla got a tie-breaker win over #10 Andres Acuña to move on and solidify his ranking on tour.


In the Quarters

– #9 Murray continued his years-long mastery of #1 Conrrado Moscoso ‘s game, topping him 12,13 to move on and put a serious dent in Moscoso’s chance of winning the year end title. Murray is now 5-4 lifetime against Moscoso across competitions dating to 2018.

– #4 Rodrigo Montoya and Portillo played a close one, with Montoya taking the breaker 11-9 to move on.

– #3 DLR advanced past Parrilla by the closest of margins, winning 13,14.

– #2 Jake Bredenbeck avenged a US National team qualifying loss to Manilla, winning in a tie-breaker.


In the Semis

– Montoya improved to 4-2 lifetime over Murray with a straightforward 12,9 win.

– DLR made it two in a row over Jake, winning in a tie-breaker to move into the final.

In the Finals, DLR made relatively fast work of Montoya, improving to 9-4 lifetime across competitions with the 2,11 win.


Points Implications of results

During the tournament, I confirmed that the IRT remains on an 11-tournament rolling schedule for its rankings, having flirted with the idea of pivoting to a 365-day calendar earlier this year but ultimately staying with the same system that was put in place in mid 2020 during Covid. By the end of 2023, it won’t matter, because there will be exactly 11 events in the calendar year (assuming no more cancellations of the 3 remaining events on the books).

What i’m not sure about is the mechanism for counting these last 11 events; is it cumulative last 11 or is it “last 11, dropping the lowest.” Because in the short term, that’ll make a huge difference as to what happens at the very top of the tour rankings as soon as this event is put in. By my records, if all 11 tournaments are counted w/o dropping the lowest score, Jake Bredenbeck will ascend to #1 by the slimmest of margins over #2 DLR, with Conrrado falling to #3. However, if its “top 11 drop the lowest” then DLR will drop a zero-point score and ascend back to #1, with Moscoso #2 and Jake #3.

Either way, The Tracktown dropped the 2022 US Open, which costs Moscoso 600 points, but two of the next three events to drop were events towards the end of 2022 that DLR missed, meaning everyone else likely is playing for 2nd place unless DLR takes some shock early losses in the last couple of events.

Does DLR’s Pickleball commitments play a role here? Maybe. The 3 remaining events on the IRT schedule are:

– 11/12 in Boston

– 12/3 in Portland

– 12/10 in Pleasanton.

Pickleball events on the schedule for those weekends?

– 11/12: USAP Nationals, a huge event underwritten by the PPA

– 12/3: San Clemente PPA season finals.

– 12/10: MLP Season 3, event 3; the last event of the 2023 MLP season.

Wow. So DLR has a MLP event the same weekend as the IRT event in Pleasanton that could decide the tour. Phew. Something’s gotta give there.


Doubles review

Match report in the PRS database:

Former #1 Kane Waselenchuk was in Eugene this weekend, but only playing doubles. He and fellow 40-something Beltran teamed up and won a round, but fell in the quarters to the #1 seeds Manilla/Parrilla.

In a testament to how close these doubles teams are, every match in the quarters and semis went to tie-breaker as the top two seeds advanced to the final.

#2 DLR/Landa, the US National team for Chile’s Pan Am games, topped the likely Bolivian doubles team Moscoso/Kadim Carrasco in one semi, then took out Manilla/Parrilla for the title.


Open Singles, other notable draws

– Victor Camacho took out Texas junior @Cole Sendrey for the Men’s Open title.

– SoCal players @Iain Dunn and Paul Saraceno took out @Israel Torres and @Steve Lewis in the Men’s Open Doubles final.


Thanks for all the streaming on the weekend, especially from broadcasters Favio Soto, Pablo Fajre and the IRTLive crew

Thanks to the Tourney Director Wayne Antone for putting this event on with such short notice. It was great to see a new event on the schedule and I hope you can make it an annual one.


Next up?

Per our handy master racquetball calendar ……/1V6OTid6rZ356voXVkoV2sN7KMMb…/

Unless we get another event on the books last minute, the next big thing is 3WallBall in Las Vegas the first week of October! I’ll be there, on the mike and covering the event. Maybe even playing (hah, probably not).



International Racquetball Tour