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Johan du Randt and Mark Parsons Repeat at Nationals
March 11, 2014
The dynamic duo were way, way on at Nationals this year. As entertaining as ever, and seemingly at ease during all the matches, Johan du Randt and Mark Parsons only lost one set during their three day, six match run. Ryan Baxter and Ricky Heath, of Indiana, gave the winners some trouble in the Round of 32 (and went on to win the 32 Round Reprieve). The semi-finals against Mike Cochrane and Scott Estes, Jr., was perhaps the one match where du Randt “wasn’t very good by me” but he and Parsons worked the “I” formation, a new look where the men play “I” during the entire point. This was also the only time during the entire weekend where the weather was schloony, with a sleety mix hampering some of the big drivers.
The finals went quickly, unfortunately for Drew Broderick and Chris Gambino, who were coming off an epic, three-hour semi-final against Rob Bakker and Hall-of-Famer Flip Goodspeed. In the finals, the second set was no roll-over, as Broderick turned on the power, and Gambino tried to shrug off a calf strain. In the end, du Randt and Parsons both made their planes, after a 6-2, 6-2 score.
Pittsburgh pulled together a fabulous, four-day platform tennis event, with 10 facilities open to the players. Tournament Directors Martin Sturgess and Ann Sheedy, the many, many volunteers who put in long days, and the staffs at the Fox Chapel Racquet Club, the Fox Chapel Field Club, and the Fox Chapel Golf Club created another memorable Nationals. Bonus points for the Taco Truck and the Burger Truck!
A special thanks goes to our name sponsor PNC and to all our other sponsors, for their support.
(l-r) Tournament Director Martin Sturgess, Finalists Chris Gambino & Drew Broderick, APTA President Rob Coster, Champions Mark Parsons and Johan du Randt