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Monday, April 11, 2005

First Day Impressions of my First Easter Bowl

First Impressions of my First Easter Bowl--
© Colette Lewis 2005--
Palm Springs CA--

The first day of a tournament is always a bit disorienting, and today was no exception. With three age groups, both boys and girls, singles and doubles, I found it even more difficult to focus here at the Easter Bowl. So with thoughts nearly as scattered as the sites, here are a few observations:

The weather is beyond good, approaching perfection, actually. The notorious winds that I've heard so much about, (and experienced in Carson) were nowhere to be found. And could the snow on the mountains be any more picturesque?

I'd heard tournament director Seena Hamilton was a premier promoter, and I saw plenty of evidence of that today. Wayne Bryant, the Jensen brothers and Mike Agassi were all at the Riviera courts today, and cameras and interviews were as much a part of the ambiance as the bougainvillea and date palms.

For all the depth in the ITF 18s events, there were surprisingly few upsets. One the boys side, only Holden Seguso (6) failed to advance to the second round, although Carsten Ball (2) and Kellen Damico (4) were extended to three sets. Girls top seed Alexa Glatch needed three sets to move on, and Lindsay Burdette (11) and Ashley Weinhold (16) made first round exits.

And speaking of quick exits, Dennis Nevolo, the second seed in boys 16 singles, won the championship in Carson on Saturday morning, then rushed to Palm Springs and played his first round match in the Easter Bowl that very afternoon. He won in straight sets Saturday and Sunday, but today was a different story. He and Waylon Chin battled for hours in the desert sun in the day's best match, which Nevolo won 7-6 (4), 6-7 (2), 7-6 (4). With all the tennis he's played in the past ten days, a loss was certainly understandable. That he didn't surrender shows an admirable respect for the game and well, guts.

The Best-Dressed award goes to doubles partners Johnny Hamui and Dennis Lajola, who were attired in brilliant orange and yellow soccer jerseys. Unfortunately they lost, 7-6 in third, so we may not get to see that fashion flare again.


Matt said...

Glad the weather calmed down a bit. Looking forward to your commentary as the week continues.