1984: Jan. Tournaments.
I continue with a change of pace—a review of first-of-the-year U.S. tournaments—but again with a beginning emphasis on what’s happened in the past. Cindy Miller (SPIN, Feb., 1984, 4), preparatory to the two Table Tennis World write-ups that follow, gives us a short history of the Sacramento TTC. Cindy speaks of the $800 Columbus Day Open the Club ran in Oct., 1968—“one of the biggest prize money tournaments at the time that attracted Dal-Joon Lee, Jack Howard, Erwin Klein, Mark Adelman, Wayne Obertone, Dave Froelick [sic: for Froehlich], Glen [sic: for Glenn] Cowan, Del [sic: for Dell] Sweeris, Edmund Fong, Patty Martinez, and Angie Rosal.
Jeff Mason, from the Sacramento Club, was on his way to becoming a top player in the country at about this time. In 1969, Jeff won the A Singles [over Phil Woo] and Jr. Mixed Doubles [with Angie Rosal] at the U.S. Open and was also a finalist there in the U-17 Junior Boys [to Glenn Cowan]. During the next few years, however, Jeff began to change his focus from tournament play to coaching. He learned coaching techniques from his own coaches, including Japan’s World Champion Ichiro Ogimura and Thai coach Thonchia “Tony” Sutivej. He first became a USTTA certified Regional Coach and is currently a USTTA National Coach.
In Jan. of 1981, Jeff, his wife Mona Miller, and I opened Sacramento’s first permanent table tennis facility with nine tables. It was a struggle the first few months of operation to meet the $1,500 monthly rent plus the other bills. Jeff began teaching classes, clinics, and camps in addition to his private lessons. Leagues were also started which attracted a lot of new members. The STTC began hosting USTTA tournaments which drew additional players from throughout California.
On June 9, 1982, with a loan from the bank, the STTC expanded. The adjacent part of the building was taken over and a connecting doorway was cut out of the intervening cement wall. The new section was even larger than the original 70 x 150 and the rent more than doubled.
The old side became the practice area and the new section was used for tournament play, leagues, and classes. Since so many people told us that ‘Club’ sounded like we were closed to the public, the name changed to Table Tennis World of Sacramento.”
Results of the 74-entry $600 Table Tennis World Winter Open, held in Sacramento Jan. 13-14: Under-2200: Mas Hashimoto ($100) over Erwin Hom, -17, 21, 6, 19. U-2000: James Therriault over Masaaki Tajima, -20, 12, 16, 15 (Mona Miller said, “Therriault was lobbing spectacularly 25 feet from the end line to easily return two-winged looper Tajima’s hard-hit smashes”). Open Doubles: Hashimoto/Mike Baltaxe over David Chun/Therriault. U-1850: Tom Miller over Horace Cheng, -14, 13, 19, then over Cliff Contreras, -12, 13, 12, 24. U-1700: John Schulz over Tim Aquino, -13, 15, 9, 17. U-3250 Doubles: Miller/Jere Brumby over Aquino/Steve Noffsinger, -17, 17, -16, 18, 16. U-1550: Jim Garcia over Brumby, 17, -11, 16, 12. U-1400: Anthony Schulz over Doohyun Won, -17, 15, 19, 17. Semi’s: Schulz over Wayne Mosley, 11, -18, 19; Won over Gary Ladd, 13, -20, 19. U-1250: James Johnson over Leroy Yoder, 14, -18, 15, 17. U-2250 Doubles: Andy Heroux/James Stewart over Michael Hara/Kevin O’Neill. U-1100: David Zamora over O’Neill, -18, 16, 13. U-950: Rene Ramirez over O’Neill, -15, 27, 23, then over William Johnson, 18, -18, 16, -19, 15. U-800 R.R. 1. Morgan Lehman. 2. Wanda Constantinides. Unrated [sic: Unrated?]: 1. Tom Miller. 2. Allen McDermott. Senior’s: 1. Miller. 2. Zak Haleem. Junior’s: 1. Jim Garcia. 2. Thanh Nguyen.
Mona Miller (Timmy’s, Feb.-Mar., 1984, 23) reports on Table Tennis World’s 72-entry Jan. 15th Pro-Am Circuit #1:
“The Table Tennis World’s 1984 $3,000-5,000 Pro-Am Circuit consists of three round robin tournaments. At each tournament players accumulate Circuit Points as they progress in their play. The player with the highest number of Circuit Points from all three tournaments will be the Grand Prize winner receiving a minimum of $1,000. An additional amount of at least $2,000 will be divided up among the other top 15 players. More prize money will be given away if the Boy Scouts of America come through with their promise to sell 1,500 spectator tickets by the end of the three tournaments. This would boost the total prize money to $5,000.
Circuit #1 began with all participants receiving a free Circuit T-shirt and a Program that included information on all the players. First-round play consisted of 16 Preliminary round-robin groups—with four to five players in each group. Only one player would come out of each group to advance to the second round. These 16 players would then be divided into four round-robin groups of four (#1, #2, #3, #4). The four winners from this second-round play would advance to form a final round robin, out of which would come the day’s highest Circuit #1 point winner.
In the first round robin, there were two upsets. Enrico Li, a strong looping and hitting penholder, blasted through Zak Haleem. Zak was a top player in Egypt many years ago, and has only recently started playing again. Ex-Austrian player Toni Kiesenhofer was defeated by Joerg Fetzer, who’d moved to Sacramento from Switzerland. Fetzer’s strong placement-blocks prevented Kiesenhofer from using his powerful loops, while Kiesenhofer’s out-of-position returns were crushed by Fetzer forehands.
Spectators really began arriving around noon. Many of them came to watch the highly publicized “Media Tournament” that was held concurrently with Circuit play from noon to 4:00 p.m. This scheduling was planned to bring in more spectators and expose them to top-level table tennis, and also to get media coverage for the Circuit. Many local TV celebrities, radio disc-jockeys, and newspaper reporters entered the “Media Tournament.”
The Circuit was stopped for 15 minutes while 300 spectators watched a special doubles match. Circuit player Toni Kiesenhofer was teamed with Sacramento Union reporter Rob Gold. Their opponents were Circuit top-seed Khoa Nguyen and the Radio K108 Beaver (complete in beaver outfit). The players really hammed it up much to the delight of the spectators, with Toni and Rob defeating Khoa and the Beaver.
After this, attention was shifted to the finishing preliminary Circuit matches. One such match was between James Therriault and Cindy Miller. As is often the case between these two, the match score came down to 1-1, with James chopping Cindy’s serves back, Cindy looping, and James lobbing in return. Cindy then would smash three or four times in a row against James’s sidespin lobs. This exciting exhibition-type match was finally won by James after many long rallies.
The preliminary matches ended on schedule at 4:30, with the top 16 players ready to play in the second round. These players were divided into four round robins with four players in each group. There was only one upset: Duc Luu was defeated, 2-0, by an impressive player from Israel, Avishy Schmidt.
In Group #1, Khoa Nguyen defeated David Chun, Enrico Li, and Carl Danner, the only player to take a game from Nguyen in the entire tournament.
In Group #2, second-seed Dean Doyle blocked, placed, and smashed his way past Charles Childers, Azmy Ibrahim, and Joerg Fetzer all in straight games.
In Group #3, there was a three-way tie between. Luu, Schmidt, and Therriault. Therriault defeated Mike Baltaxe, 22-20 in the 3rd with Mike smashing and James chopping and lobbing. Therriault also had an impressive win over Schmidt. In addition to upsetting Duc Luu, Schmidt, who advanced out of this group, also defeated Baltaxe, 2-0, whom he’d lost to just the day before in the Sacramento Winter Open.
In Group #4, Erwin Hom played an incredible three-game match with Masaaki Tajima, both players trying to take the attack first. The most exciting match in this group, though, was between Hom and Masaru Hashimoto. Hashimoto looked like he would win with his calm, controlled style that allowed him to take the second game at 11. Hom came back in the third game, however, winning at 19. Hom also defeated Behzad Zandipour.
In the final round robin group, Hom, playing extremely well, defeated Doyle in three games, 2-0, with the second game going to 26-24. Nguyen played a close, exciting game with Schmidt. Avishy rolled Khoa’s serves and initiated the attack, but it was Nguyen who won—and took first place in the tournament.”
Sam Lima, longtime president of the Cupertino Club, writes: “I am retired now from my job with the San Jose Fire Dept. and am devoting my time to table tennis. I sold my five-table Center, sold the land so I could come out good for my retirement, but I’m continuing my table tennis by coaching and selling equipment. I’ve erected a building with one table, so, in addition to coaching there, I can rent it out. My phone’s listed, and I’m doing everything I can to pass on table tennis information and support the USTTA.”
Here are the Minutes from the Southern California TTA Meeting held [at the Mar Vista Recreational Center at 3:00 p.m.?] Jan. 14, 1984 (Timmy’s, Feb.-Mar., 1984, 23):
“A Motion was passed authorizing Peter Antkowiak to draw up a seal for the SCTTA. The seal will be based on the USTTA logo with a bear and different colors.
A Motion was passed to strongly suggest to all tournament sponsors to charge a $5.00 late fee, and not to accept late singles entries the day of the tournament.
A motion was passed suspending the two-color racquet rule for Unrated Singles and all 1200 and Under events until June 1st, 1984. The players playing with one color must have the same type of rubber on both sides of the racquet.
Ching Shyue Wu, after giving a Coaching Report, resigned as Coaching Chair because he is returning to Taiwan. Dr. Eugene Taw was elected to replace him, and Joe Yoon was accepted as Assistant Coaching Chair.
A Motion was passed to send a letter of appreciation to Jim Williamson, Treasurer of the now disbanded California TTA, for holding $372.37 in funds and giving it to this organization—which now has $1,187.37 in its treasury. The Motion also included the purchase of a $25 plaque for Mr. Williamson in appreciation of his services.
Jim West, who brought the check from Mr. Williamson, provided a copy of the Constitution and Bylaws of the old CTTA.
A Motion was passed to allow a person (if he/she wishes) to keep 25% of all donations he/she brings to our non-profit SCTTA.
The next meeting will be held on Mar. 17, 1984 at 3:00 p.m. at Rich Livingston’s home in Burbank.”
Tom Wintrich [SPIN, Mar., 1984, 22) reports on the Rocky Mountain Closed, held Jan. 28th in Fort Collins, CO. For this one-day tournament, Director Paul Williams “wisely limited the tourney to just seven events.” This was a good idea because, “instead of the 40-50 players expected, 67 entrants showed, and, with but six tables to play on, the day was non-stop action until 11:00 p.m….With the diligent help of Debbie Dixon and Steve Walker, the tournament ran smoothly [despite being expanded to 10 events] and not late enough that the participants couldn’t enjoy a gathering at the local pizza parlor afterwards….The players thank Paul and crew for their well-run competition. And I personally thank him for the gracious hospitality he provided to Bob Tretheway, Mark Zochowski, and me.
The outstanding player of the tournament was Dana Jeffries, who has shed 15 pounds and regained the use of his right arm following an injury. Jeffries reached the semi’s of the Open before losing to the eventual winner Bohdan Dawidowicz. Also, in the final of the Senior’s, by winning the first two games, Dana extended Bohdan into the fifth. It was quite a physical and mental struggle for Dana to hit so well against Dawidowicz’s excellent defense.”
Results: Open Singles. Dawidowicz, 12, -16, 8, 20, over Howard Grossman who’d -19, 12, 15, 15 stopped Johan Englund in the other semi. Open Doubles: Bohdan/Kasia Dawidowicz over Wintrich/Williams, 15, -19, 7. Women’s: [Kasia didn’t play] Carol Plato over Sheila Weissberg, -22, 18, 16, -16, 20. A’s: Final: Williams over Wintrich, 19 in the 5th. Semi’s: Williams over Thomas Schlangen, 17, 20; Wintrich, after -15, 19, 10 escaping Bob Leatherwood, over Bob Zarren, 17, -19, 17. B’s: Dick Haines, 10, -18, 22, 13, over Frank Heller who’d advanced, 15, 20, over Bob Tretheway who’d earlier just gotten by Stan Stephens, -20, 18, 20. U-3400 Doubles: Englund/Dean Herman over Manuel Salazar/K. Dawidowicz, 19 in the 3rd. C Singles. Shawn Schmidlen over Alan Streater, -18, 19, 11, 10. D Singles: Curt Marceau over Cynthia Smith, 17, 17, 20. Jr. Singles: 1. Phong Ly, 2-1 (d. Herman, -16, 20, 15). 2. Keri Herman, 2-1 (d. Ide, 14, -14, 15). 3. Steve Ide, 2-1 (d. Phong, 16, -10, 17). 4. David Dixon, 0-3.
Winners at the Jan. 21st Detroit Winter Open: Men’s: 1. Mike Veillette, 3-0 (d. Doney; d. Powell, -16, -15, 13, 18, 18). 2. Jim Doney, 2-1 (d. Powell, -20, 13, 13, -16, 10). 3.-4. Bobby Powell, 0-2. 3.-4. Jim Dixon, 0-2. Women’s: Michelle Mantel over Janine Schroeder. Open Doubles: Veillette/Powell over Dave Alt/Dave Cafone. A’s: Jim Dixon over Larry Wood-19, 18, 20, -18, 18. B’s: Final: Aaron Smith over Mark Legters. Semi’s: Smith over Doug Burns, 19 in the 4th; Legters over Dave Cafone, 17, -14, 20, 15. C’s: Bob Allshouse over Mark Hrivnak who advanced over Ross Sanders in five. D’s: Jim Tumidanski over Rang Chanyawatanskul, 19, -20, 20, 17, then over Guenther Schroeder who’d survived Hosea Dunnigan, 17 in the 5th. D Doubles: Robert Atkinson/H. Biggs over Allshouse/Peter Monaghan. E’s: Final: Jamie Dixon over Jeff Stec, def. Semi’s: Dixon over Atkinson, 17, -20, 20, 12; Stec over David Kiurski, 25, 23, -15, -19, 17.
Novice: Mantel over Todd Sweeris who’d escaped Bill Kidder, 19, -17, 19, 21. Beginner: Pat Bryant over Barry Fogel, -11, 15, -20, 19, 19, then over Richard Takas. Consolation: Paul Bochus over Takas. Hard Bat: Veillette over D. Burns in five. Senior’s: Dan Hayes over Chuck Burns, 19, -19, 17, 19, 19, then over Ed Brennan. U-17: Jamie Dixon over Kiurski, 19 in the 5th, then over Stec who finally won out over Mantel, 12, -15, 20, -19, 25. U-15 Boys: Dixon over Eric Schwartzberg, 20, 21, 25, then over Kiurski, 18 in the 5th. U-15 Girls: Mantel over Schroeder.
SPIN (Apr., 1984, 19) reports that Stefan Florescu of the Rolling Romanians Sports Club “has done it again. Not only has the Lincoln Park quadriplegic been inducted into the National Wheelchair Sports Hall of Fame and named the winner of many national and international gold and silver medals for swimming, table tennis, and wheelchair track, but now he has added singing to his list of conquests.
On Jan. 25th, 1984, in Milwaukee’s World Veterans Administration Medical Center, Florescu was proclaimed the winner of two gold medals in area competition of the 1984 National Music Festival for Veterans.
Florescu, an outpatient at the Medical Center for spinal injuries, said tapes of all winning performers were sent to Chicago for regional judging, and based on the tapes national winners will be chosen.
The Lincoln Park man took one medal in the folk music category and the other for original composition.
Florescu said the first time he sang publicly was during a Boy Scout camp when he was 12 years old.
‘Stef,’ founder of the Michigan Paralyzed Veterans of America (1961) and the Annual Michigan Wheelchair Games (1965), would like to organize a similar Michigan music festival for all Michigan handicappers. All interested amateur singers and instrumentalists with physical handicaps should write to Michigan PVA, 30406 Ford Rd., Garden City, MI 48135.”
Canadian TTA Technical Director Adham Sharara [years later to be President of the ITTF] tells us (Timmy’s, Feb.-Mar., 1984, 15) that the “Air Canada Sports Awards was made at the CJOH-TV (CTV) studios in Ottawa on Jan. 20th, 1984 and televised nationally on the 21st on CTV’s Wide World of Sports.”
Among the three finalists for the “Executive of the Year” award was Marg Walden. In finishing runner-up to Geraldine York, President of the Canadian Blind Sports Federation, “Marg received a beautiful personalize plaque and two Air Canada passes to anywhere Air Canada travels.”
Adham stresses that “to all of us, Marg and Table Tennis were the real winners. We received several minutes of National Table Tennis coverage (worth millions) and Marg was recognized as being an exceptional volunteer working on behalf of her sport for forty-seven (47) years.
And that is not all: due to Marg’s ‘win’ the CTTA will receive Air Canada passes for 1984.
THANK YOU, MARG.”
Another CTTA official, current Program Co-ordinator, Michel Goyette, having a few weeks earlier conducted a Training Camp in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, now gives us the results of the Jan. 28-29 Montreal Open. “This was the first National Circuit Tournament of the New Year and once again Alain Bourbonnais, who has not lost a single tournament he’s entered (including the National Top 12 #1) since Sept., 1983, grabbed the title, defeating Errol Caetano (from down 2-0) in the final. The tournament was held at the Mirabel Indoor Tennis and Racquetball Club (getting that venue’s a good habit) and the Quebec TTF provided all the participants with very good playing facilities and accommodations.
Results: Open Singles: Final: Bourbonnais over Mitch Rothfleisch, 12, -11, 17, 16, then over Caetano, -18, -13, 7, 17, 13. Women’s Singles: Final: Mariann Domonkos over Gloria Hsu, 16, 16, -15, 23. Men’s Doubles: Bourbonnais/Rothfleisch over Yvan Dolan/Stephane Charbonneau. Women’s Doubles: Hsu/Thanh Mach over Julia Johnson/Becky McKnight. Mixed Doubles: Bao Nguyen/Domonkos over Rothfleisch/Johnson. Senior’s: Derek Wall over Paul Rozier.
Perhaps, given the Racquet Club’s advantages over most sites, Co-ordinator Goyette didn’t think it proper to be critical of this tournament. But Canadian Coach Alain Thomas didn’t feel like holding back. He had this to say:
“Since spectators didn’t rush to this tournament any more than they do in Toronto, it didn’t matter that there wasn’t enough seating for hoped-for attendance. However, it did matter that there was a three-hour initial delay in the tournament schedule (due to the double-booking of the facilities). Such a shortcoming will no doubt be resolved in the future, and then, if we can count on a more efficient handling of the tournament itself by Quebec officials, we will all be happy to return.
Because there were long periods during which only a few of the 18 tables available were actually used for match play—I even saw a few minutes without a single match on—everything was delayed and the tournament ended at 1:30 a.m. (Errol Caetano, for example, played his first Open Singles match, scheduled for 12:30 p.m., at 9:00 p.m.) These delays affected our players’ performance and wallets (supplemental hotel and meal expenses), not to mention their frustration which somewhat dampened the pleasant atmosphere created by our welcoming friends.”
Winners at the Jan. 14th Eastern Canada Open: Men’s: Steve Lyons over David Mahabir , 23, 21. Women’s: Julia Johnson over Daiva Koperski, 9, 21, after Daiva had downed Michelle Qurrey, 16, 24. Men’s Doubles: Lyons/Mitch Rothfleisch over Richard Chin/Fred Taylor. Mixed Doubles: Chin/Qurrey over Rothfleisch/Johnson. U-2000: Vaibhav Kamble over Roger Moore. U-1850: Yih Sheh Leo over Stephane Leveille. 20, -20, 19. U-1700: Taylor over Michel Goyette. U-1550: Eng Hust Doi over C.J. Lee. U-1400: Rajiv Issar over Robert da Silva. U-1200: Barry Lam over Rajiv Singh. Senior’s: Ned McLennan over K.T. Lee, 19 in the 3rd. Boys U-17: Kamble over Patrick Leveille. Boys U-15: P. Leveille over Martin Ladouceur. Boys U-13: Trung Le over Johnny Ng. Boys U-11: Kirk Vassel over Denny Oliveira. Jr. Miss U-17: Qurrey over Alina Tse, 19 in the 3rd. Jr. Miss U-15: Jose Malette over Monika Thimian. Jr. Miss U-11: Thimian over Dina da Silva, 23-21 in the 3rd.
Rick Hardy, struggling at times to retain consciousness as Tournament Referee at the Jan. 21st Grand Opening Open of the Cleveland, Ohio Club, is, I think, alert enough here to cover that tournament for us (Timmy’s Feb.-Mar., 1984, 24):
“Once upon a time, there was a new table tennis Club in Cleveland. And, like all table tennis clubs, they needed money. So they decided to have a tournament. Not a large one, you understand, just a normal 50-entry Ohio two-star.
Well, they sent out their entry blanks and waited for the entries to come in the mail. And how they came! Until, on Friday night, they had 85 people to play on six tables in one day.
But the gallant Tournament Director, Lori Berenson, carried on. Through the quagmire of matches they slogged, as the tournament fell several hours behind. At last Rick, his brain shot, retired to sit staring blankly into space (only to arise well after midnight to win the U-3400 Doubles). But Lori, with the indispensible help of visitors Rod Mount and Chris Wibbelman, continued on until finally the tournament finished.
It ended at 4:45 a.m. Sunday with a prize-money split between Mount and Dave Alt in the B final. Alt had just beaten Doug Hardy 26-24 in the 3rd in a match that was incredibly well-played considering the hour. [It was a match listed in the Results as one of the semi’s in the A’s [sic]; the other showing Mount over Dave Cafone. Perhaps Rick (still a bit brain-dead?) had nodded off while sending Timmy’s these scores, for the result of the A final reads: Bob Cordell over Jim Repasy, 6, 10, 11.]
In between, Brian Masters easily took the Open Singles, beating runner-up Randy Seemiller, #3 finisher Simon Shtofmakher, and Bobby Powell, losing in all just one game to Shtofmakher. Randy beat Simon and Bobby both in four, after which Bobby defaulted to Simon.
All players showed great patience and appreciated our efforts. Our next tournament is planned for TWO days.”
Other results: Women’s: Lydia Balciunas over Ellen Gibson. U-3700 Doubles: Bob Allshouse/Robert Cloutier over D. Hardy/D. Berenson, deuce in the 3rd. C’s: Ross Sanders over Tony Marcum. U-3400 Doubles: Hardy/Hardy over Sanders/David Kiurski, 19 in the 3rd. D’s: Mike Mohan over Brad Hudson,-19, 19, 16. E’s: Stan Talifero over Jeff Stec. U-2700 Doubles: D. Hardy/Balciunas over Bernie Tandler/Marsik. Novice: Christian Muller over Jason Tasch. Beginners: Tasch over Balciunas. Hard Bat: Cafone over Bob Slapnik. Esquire’s: Neil Myers over Bob Allen. Senior’s: Ken Huebner over Greg Brendon, 23, -17, 20, then over Myers. U-21: Masters over Alt who’d eked out a win over Chip Coulter, -16, 20, 16. U-17: Stec over Kiurski, 19, 21. U-15: Kiurski over Janine Schroeder. U-13: Schroeder over Ben Culler. U-11: Culler over Andrew Myers.
Winners at the Jan. 14 Columbus, Ohio Winter Open: Open Singles: 1. Brian Masters, 3-0. 2. Randy Seemiller, 2-1—defaulted to Brian; d. Powell, -19, -17, 17, 20, 17; d. Repasy, 14, 18, 20. 3. Bobby Powell, 1-2. 4. Jim Repasy, 0-3. Best quarter’s: Powell d. Bob Cordell, -20, -14, 19, 19, 19. Women’s: Li-Yuin Lee over Lori Berenson. Mixed Doubles: Powell/Jodee Williams over Rod Mount/ Berenson. A’s: Dave Strang over Mount, -22, -22, 18, 16, 19. B’s: Mark Allen over Tony Marcum, 23-21 in the 3rd, then over Doug Hardy. C’s: Marcum, -13, -19, 17, 18, 18, over Jim Fulks who’d just gotten by John Pletikapich, 17, -12, 20. U-3400 Doubles: Brad Hudson/Ken Stanfield over D. Hardy/Rick Hardy. D’s: Fulks over Hudson in five. E’s: Mike Webster over Aaron Edwards. U-2700 Doubles: Stanfield/Chester Riddle over Dan James/Webster, 18 in the 4th. Unrated: Todd Jackson over Williams. Beginners/Novice: Greg Galbreath over Steve Sarokin. Esquire’s: Fulks over Ron DeMent, 19 in the 4th. Senior’s: Greg Brendon over DeMent, def. Hard Rubber: 1. Allen. 2. Hudson.
Results of the Jan. 28th Dayton Round Robin: U-1850: Ken Stanfield over John Dichiaro, 18 in the 3rd. U-1700: John Pletikapich over Brad Hudson. U-1600: Kevin Cassidy over Steve Hudgens. U-1500: Keith Lander over Hudgens who’d eked out an advance over Neil Weintraub, 23-21 in the 3rd. U-1400: Kirk Henthorn over Dick Kipfer.
I began this Chapter with talk of a change of pace, of an emphasis on what’s happened in the past. It seems appropriate then that I bring in (Timmy’s, June, 1984, 18) Steve Isaacson’s belated coverage of the St. Joe Valley Open, played in South Bend, IN, Jan., 1954:
“The St. Joe Valley is actually the highlight of the winter season. Next to the National’s and the Intercities, this is the title that everyone wants. Conditions at the South Bend YMCA are perfect and John Varga (with the assistance of Joe Bernat) sees that every event is run on schedule…or else!! This year that task seemed monumental because there were actually nine events to run!! Someone here suggested that there should be more events…A’s, B’s, C’s, D’s, E Novice Doubles Consolation, etc. Ridiculous!! Nine events are already too many!!
Most of the players arrived Friday night and are staying at the luxurious Oliver Hotel. Others unable to afford $8.00 a night were able to get a room right here at the Y for $3.00.
This year’s Championship event was struck a disastrous blow by the untimely withdrawal of the snowbound St. Louis contingent, including Bill Price, George Hendry, Jim Tancill, Wally Gundlach, Don Lasater, and National Boy’s Champion Alphonse Holtman. Fortunately the draw was redone in time. Since highly-ranked Miles, Pagliaro, Somael, Schiff, Hazi, Hirschkowitz, and Gusikoff were guests of Joe Dimaggio and the World Champion New York Yankees for the weekend, most of the top seeds this year were Chicagoans.
Men’s Singles—Quarter’s (top half):
Top-seeded Bernie Bukiet, a recent immigrant from Germany, had no trouble with Chuck Burns, even though Burns came wrapped in enough bandages to supply the Detroit Lions for three seasons!! Bukiet, either not noticing or not caring, gave Chuck absolutely no sympathy, and not many points either!! Oh, well, Chuck…you’ll be in the Senior’s soon.
Tim Boggan, of the University of Dayton, a five-game upset winner over Ralph Bast in the eighth’s, ran out of gas against unseeded, unknown, unheralded, untalented Richard Puls, who earlier had destroyed 8th-seed Keith Porter. Puls, playing with some kind of New Paddle called ‘Sponge Rubber’ that apparently imparts strange, silent spins, left Porter destroying his entire arsenal of 35 paddles, and caused Boggan to vow that he would never shave again until Sponge is banned. Ha! Can you imagine collegian Boggan with a beard? The Dodgers will move out of Brooklyn first!
Quarter’s (bottom half):
No surprises here—former U.S. Champ Bill Holzrichter finished off chopper Marty Prager three straight. Both had reached the quarter’s with four-game victories: Holzrichter over apoplectic V. Lee Webb, and Prager over USTTA President Jim Shrout.
Local defensive ace Dave Krizman, seeded sixth, and U.S. #6 Allen Levy had a sensational quarter-final match. Levy won the first two easily, 21-14, 21-12, and apparently had the match well in hand. But each point got longer and longer with Krizman retrieving ball after ball seemingly from the second balcony! At one point, Umpire John Read actually called the score after what he thought was an ungettable putaway by Levy—only to see the ball returned from three tables over…a clear Krizman winner!!! Third game to Krizman, 22-20. Fourth to Krizman, 21-18. Fifth to Krizman, 21-5—and back to the Net and Paddle Club for an arm-weary Levy.
Puls’s sponge was wiped clean by Bukiet’s unforgiving forehand. Said Bernie, ‘Sponge? Me no see Sponge. What it is anyway? Junk rubber?’
The Holzrichter-Krizman encounter was a sensational example of the old and the new, and an almost exact copy of the Krizman-Levy quarter-final. Down 2-0, Krizman merely shifted into second gear and it was all over. Final score: -15, -14, 18, 19, 10.
Could Krizman chop down Bukiet? (Hmph…could Bergmann chop down Eric Boggan as yet not even a twinkle in Timmy’s eye? Nope!) Nobody can chop down Bukiet!! Nobody!! Final score: 21-10, 21-11, 21-12.
I am going to predict here and now that Bernie Bukiet will win at least three U.S. Men’s Singles titles, and will be a figure to contend with on the table tennis scene for the next 30-40 years!!
In the Women’s final, Millie Shahian was an easy winner over second-seed Peggy Ichkoff. Peggy had survived a five-game struggle with five-time U.S. Champ Sally Green Prouty in the semi’s, while Millie had had little trouble with 12-year-old U.S. Junior Miss Champion Sharlene Krizman.
The Junior players were astonished to have two-time Olympic Decathlon Champion Bob Mathias present the awards. Mathias, who captured his second Gold Medal last year in Helsinki, vowed that one day he would head the U.S. Olympic Movement and make Table Tennis an Olympic Sport!! Ridiculous, you say? No more than cowboys in the White House!!
And what a Junior field! Top-seeded Dave Krizman, the Men’s runner-up, couldn’t survive the semi’s, falling three straight to Chicago’s Steve Isaacson. (Listen, if I can make this stuff up, I can sure as hell be in there to win the damned tournament!) Cincinnati’s Harley Bradford topped U.S. Junior Champion Carl Dentice of Milwaukee in the other half. After his match with Harley, Dentice complained of chest pains. Dr. Bill Meszaros looked quite concerned—so I’ll keep you informed of developments. In the final, budding cartoonist Isaacson massacred Bradford, 21-5, 21-6, 21-10.
Well, gotta go now. President Eisenhower’s going to be on the tube—something about Vietnam, whatever that is. Then Rocky Marciano is defending his title against another stiff! See you next month!!”
An unsigned article [Timmy’s, Feb.-Mar., 1984, 24) provides coverage for the 1983 [sic: for 1984] $1,000 Louisiana Open. It was sponsored by the Baton Rouge Club “over a severely cold weekend, Jan. 14-15, and drew over 70 players from six states.”
In the Open Singles, the #1 and #2 finishers, Lehan [sic: for Lekan] Fenuyi and Perry Schwartzberg, “have become everyday practice partners since Perry moved back to Houston a few months ago. As a result, both have improved immensely and have climbed to the Top Ten in the U.S. A close and exciting match was expected, but it turned out to be a lop-sided one—Fenuyi won 3-0. For some reason Perry has not done well in Louisiana tournaments. It may be a jinx, or perhaps it’s the tables, as he has claimed every time he has come here. Or perhaps it could be that Lehan [Lekan] is playing better than Perry.”
In “Help! Help! Help!” (SPIN, Jan., 1984, 18), Perry writes, “I’m looking for an old style Stiga Alser blade. This is the one that originally came with a picture of Alser on the handle. If the picture is long gone, you will know it is the old style because it will not have the circular insert in the handle. Anyone having this racket can make a quick sale to me. Please call or write: Perry Schwartzberg (713-729-8830), 9723 Atwell, Houston, TX 77096.
Louisiana Open Results: Open R.R. 1.Fenuyi, 3-0. 2. Schwartzberg, 2-1. 3.-4. Roberto Byles. 3.4. Tunde Jacobs. (All four players are from Houston.) Open Doubles: Schwartzberg/Fenuyi over Byles/Edward Poon. Women’s R.R.: 1. San Antonio’s Marjory Willcox, 1-1/3-2 (d. Gonzales, 17, 13). 2. Sarka Dura, 1-1/3-3 (d. Willcox, -13, 15, 16). 3. Gloria Gonzales, 1-1/2-3 (d. Dura, 13, -16, 10). [Forty years earlier, in 1944, Willcox was a Women’s Singles eighthfinalist in the U.S. Open.] Mixed Doubles: Schwartzberg/”Peggy” Kulcharnpises over Byles/Dura, 19, 20. Louisiana State Men’s Championship: Final: E. Poon over Abdul Moghrabi. Semi’s: Poon over David Collins; Moghrabi over Malcolm Latour.
A’s: Saubano Adio, “a member of the Nigerian Team that won the 1983 U. S. Open Team Championship,” over Keith LaFrance, 23, 13, -16, 16. Adio, also from Houston, had gone five with Jacobs in the Open. A Doubles: Adio/George Shofoluwe over James Rautis/Roland Schilhab who’d survived Byles/Kenny Owens, -15, 20, 18. B’s: Schilhab over Rautis, 16, 17, -17, 17. B Doubles: LaFrance/James Shiro over Byles/Frank Gonzales, 20, 18. C’s: Final: LaFrance, 19 in the 4th, over Rautis who’d advanced by Power Poon, 19 in the 3rd. D’s: Mel Evans, 18 in the 4th, over Shofoluwe who’d gotten by Mike Bortner, -14, 20, 19. E’s: Bill Plue over Charles Mosley, -24, 8, 19. Novice: Glenn Singletary over G. Gonzales, 22, -15, 18, then over F. Gonzales. Handicap: F. Gonzales over G. Gonzales, def. Senior’s: P. Poon over Richard Puls, then over Tom Baudry. U-17’s: Schiro over 9-year-old Eric Owens. U-13’s: 1. Owens, 1-1/3-2 (d. Cleveland, 17, 12). 2. Jeff Cleveland, 1-1/2-2 (d. Schulz, 24, 11). 3. Karl Schulz, 1-1/2-3 (d. Owens, 19, -12, 19).
Moving on, Timmy’s extends its sympathy to the family and friends of Ted Bourne, who died Jan. 14, 1984 while playing table tennis in the Florida Closed at Orlando. Bard Brenner’s coverage of that Closed will follow in a moment—but, first, a few words about Ted.
Here’s Randy Hess [SPIN, Feb., 1984, 13): “Ted Bourne fell and died of a stroke or rupture of a main artery, Jan. 14th while playing table tennis at the Florida State Closed.
I knew Ted for over 20 years. During the early ‘60’s, we played every week together at the Spaceport Table Tennis Club in Cocoa, FL. Sometimes, several of us played till two or three in the morning concluding 12 hours of continuous play.
…One of Ted’s favorite tricks while performing with his partner at half-time during the Harlem Globetrotter games was to keep four balls going at once. The entertainment business was what he enjoyed, and he helped Dick Miles to start appearing in shows. On one of his travels he played before the Shah and Queen of Iran. The Shah gave him a solid silver cigar box.
A lot of Ted’s stories seemed unbelievable and I had my doubts until I saw his huge photo album which documented his stories.
Lori, Ted’s wife, remembered that Ted often said that when his time came, he wanted to go while playing table tennis.”
In an adjacent article in SPIN, 1938 USTTA President Stan Morest said that when he lived in Stuart, FL from 1975-1980 Ted coached him. He tells us one of the many stories he heard from Ted:
“During World War II while in Baghdad, Ted heard, as he said, ‘the click of the little celluloid ball,’ as he passed the Red Cross Center. Going inside, Ted saw Polish soldiers playing table tennis. After he’d watched a while, a player approached and handed him a racket. An invitation to play followed. Ted easily beat the soldier. Then another player came up and said, ‘Me see you very fine Merican player. You play me too?’ Ted agreed.
As he walked on to the court he noticed that the pool players stopped playing and others came over to watch. Ted surmised at that point there must be a reason for the interest. He played the first game defensively, losing 21-7. The second game he played offensively but also lost 21-7. As he shook hands with his victorious opponent, he said, ‘I’m Ted Bourne from New York.’ The winner replied, “Me Melik Schieff.’ Ted told me he could have sunk through the floor as he instantly recalled that this Schieff was the only player Sol Schiff didn’t beat in the Swaythling Cup competition at the 1937 World Championships. Ted had just played the Polish Champion!”
The following Profile of Bourne (Timmy’s, Feb.-Mar., 1984, 25) was written by Daniel Ross for the Feb. 28, ’81 Vero Beach Press Journal that appeared in the Apr., 1982 issue of Table Tennis Topics:
“Ted Bourne, 69, a long-time Vero Beach, Florida resident, who still speaks with an English accent though he came to the States when he was 12, has had vast experience in how table tennis can put smiles on people’s faces. From 1948 to 1958 Bourne, a bachelor until age 62, performed table tennis games and tricks during half-time shows of the Harlem Globetrotters.
From November through April for 10 years, Bourne and his partner, Bob Anderson, performed in a different place every night.
In his Vero Beach home Bourne explained a trick that mystified the Globetrotters’ fans. He would kneel with his back to the playing table and suspend the ball in mid-air by blowing on it. Then he would hit the ball with his paddle over his shoulder to his partner at the far end of the table. Bourne would then catch his partner’s return shot in his mouth. Again turning his back to the table, he would spit the ball against his stationary paddle hard enough to bounce back over his head to his partner. His partner’s return shot would then rocket into Bourne’s chest and, as if the wind were knocked from him, he would cough up two more Ping Pong balls.
Nothing with less of a cavernous mouth than a hippopotamus can hold three balls, so the crowd was baffled.
After Bourne spat the ball against his paddle and it bounced to his partner, he would pull a ‘slight of mouth’ and gobble the two extra balls without the crowd’s ever seeing. Magic tricks.
Bourne’s travels with Abe Saperstein’s Globetrotters validated the word ‘globetrotting.’ He played in Europe, Hawaii, Alaska, and Cuba among many other places.
In 1952 he ‘flew all over Alaska in a DC 3’ with the Olympic great and former world’s fastest human, Jesse Owens, playing for Alaskan Indians who knew about table tennis though they had no cars. Also during 1952 in Cuba when Bourne’s regular partner was absent, the Globetrotters’ owner, Saperstein, produced a Cuban opponent and told Bourne, ‘If that guy beats you, you’re fired!’
The Cuban player, holding his racket like a pen, gave Bourne a memorable test of his competitive skills, but Bourne won. After the contest, Saperstein told him that his opponent was the Cuban National Champion.
Eight years ago a man approached Bourne in Miami, Florida, and said, “You’re the man that beat me in Cuba.’ Small world.
Sadly, Bourne’s long-time partner, Anderson, died on the last day of touring with the Globetrotters.
Between April and November of his table tennis days with the Globetrotters, Bourne followed in the footsteps of his father and earned his keep as a Professional Golf Association club pro. Today he still retains his PGA membership card which he earned at 18.
Though he would have the right to be arrogant after beating the Cuban Champion, Bourne downplays his competitive abilities and stresses that he was always ‘considered a very good teacher.’
Dr. Stan Morest, one of the best Veteran players in the U.S., is a former Bourne pupil who can attest to his teaching ability.
Bourne and his wife of eight years, Lurie, run the Physical and Cultural Arts Center in Pocahontas Park, downtown Vero Beach, every Wednesday night. While Bourne teaches table tennis, his wife handles registration and signs out games such as chess.
Working at the Physical and Cultural Arts Center, along with picking up fallen oranges from his backyard trees, helps the 69-year-old Bourne keep active. ‘Soon as you slow down you’re ready for the library.’
Bourne will not be ready for the Library for a long time.”
Now back to Brenner and the Florida Closed, played in Orlando, Jan. 14-15 (Timmy’s, Feb.-Mar., 1984, 25). Of course, before giving us the Results of the tournament, Bard must mention Bourne: “I was told that Ted Bourne of Vero Beach had suffered a heart attack while hitting a forehand and died. He’d succumbed despite the valiant efforts of Tournament Referee Toby Hart, who’d tried to revive him with CPR techniques.”
Results: Championship Singles: Final: Ron Rigo successfully defended his State Championship—again, as last year, over Greg Gingold, 16, -9, 10, 19. Best early-round matches: “Jacksonville’s Dan Kutzer’s deuce in the 3rd, 4th, AND 5th comeback victory over Tournament Committee member Bill Godshalk; Rene Tywang’s exciting play in forcing Olga Soltesz into the 5th; Randy Hess’s shocking five-game upset of Tampa junior star Kit Jeerapaet; and Gingold’s five-game struggle with Cameron Phipps.” Women’s Championship: 1. Soltesz, 3-0. 2. Naciye Hacikadiroglu, 2-1. Naciye’s a Turkish National attending the University of Miami (as were a number of players in this tournament). 3. Hanna Schult. Championship Doubles: Final: John Elliott/Scott Beauregard over Larry Gold/Paul Winebarger, 17 in the 5th. Semi’s: Elliott/Beauregard over Ron/Steve Rigo, 17 in the 5th; Gold/Winebarger over Soltesz/Lenny Chew, deuce in the 5th.
A’s: Elliott over S. Rigo in five. B’s: Brian Miezejewski over Hacikadiroglu, 19, 21, then over Steve McLaren. B Doubles: Steve Federico/Tywang over Jean Audrian/Sohran Zarrabian. C’s: McLaren over Tywang in five. Rene, “before going into the 5th, hurried over to get a good-luck kiss from his bride-to-be—Alice, daughter of Newgy’s TTC proprietor Joe Newgarden.” D’s: Robert Stone over Zarrabian. E’s: Joe Long over Sean Hanley, 17, -22, -14, 18, 20. Senior’s: Brenner over S. Rigo. Junior’s: Hanley over Long.
Two weeks later, Bard reports on the Florida Winter Open, held Jan. 28-29 at Newgy’s, his home club in Miami. He begins with Newgy pro-manager Marty Prager “celebrating the new year by starting a new program—a college-credit course, held on Saturdays at Newgy’s for the Miami-Dade Community College System. In fact, one of the requirements of the course for two of Marty’s 1988 Olympic hopefuls was to enter this January tournament.” Whoops—surprise!—the club’s lights went out during Saturday’s matches. But for Sunday’s Championship play all was back to normal.
Results: Championship Singles (“since Jerry Thrasher was a few hundred rating points above the other entrants, we deliberately skewed the draw so as not to ‘sacrifice’ anyone”): 1. Super-looper Thrasher, 3-0 (didn’t lose a game). 2. “Unorthodox, honeycombed-bat player Dickie Fleisher,” 2-1 (lost games, one at deuce, only to Thrasher). 3.-4. Roberto Garcia, ex-Cuban Champ, 0-2. 3.-4. Joe Sokoloff, 0-2. Best matches: Olga Soltesz in five over Cuban Carlos Garcia; Wayne Daunt over Lenny Chew; Lance Rosemore, deuce in the 4th, over clubmate Rene Tywang; Ly, 19-in-the-4th, over Daunt; Garcia, 18-in-the-4th, over Cameron Phipps; Sokoloff over George Bluhm in four; Brenner’s five-gamer over Rosemore; Steve Federico’s win from down 2-0 and three match-points to Marv Leff; and Sokoloff’s comeback over Brenner, 21-19 in both the 4th and 5th. Women’s: 1. Soltesz, 2-0 (d. Belnavis, 18 in the 4th; d. Hacikadiroglu in four). 2. Carla Belnavis, 1-1 (d. Hacikadiroglu in five). Naciye Hacikadiroglu, 0-2. Championship Doubles: former Puerto Rico National Champion Juan Ly and recently returned home from abroad Fleisher over Brenner/Sokoloff in four, then over Thrasher/Daunt.
A’s: Federico over Bluhm, -17, 15, 18. Semi’s: Federico over David Tomlinson, 19 in the 3rd; Bluhm over Chew, -18, 19, 18. A Doubles: Chew/Joe Long over Brenner/Kadin, 25, 17. Semi’s: Chew/Long over Bluhm/Steve McLaren, 20, -19, 21; Brenner/Kadin over Roman Teller/Frank Hanley, 16, -16, 19. B’s: Teller over Hanley. C’s: Randy Hess over Earl Haley. D’s: Emmanuel Okpala over Michael Hugh-Sam. Novice: Men: Medina Espinosa over Gary Egri. Novice Women: Terese Terranova over Ursula Dow. College Men: Brian Miezejewski over Mike Hayek, 20, 20. College Women: Hacikadiroglu over Terranova. Consolation: Championship and B’s: Bluhm; C’s: Hanley; D’s: Egri. Senior’s: Brenner over Hanley.
Note that Dr. Monroe Berg, 73, formerly from Long Island, now of Tamarac, FL, has just been chosen Broward County’s “Outstanding Senior School Volunteer” for the tutorial and table tennis work he’s done with students in the area. Now he’s up for the “Outstanding Florida School Volunteer Award” presented by Governor Bob Graham.
Lloyd Woods (Timmy’s, Jan-Feb, 1984, 8) reports on the Venezuelan National Junior Championships held in the new table tennis gymnasium in Maturin, one of the best in the country. “Beatrice Lopez, the sister of Venezuelan National Men’s Champion Francisco Lopez, was the outstanding player in the Championships, winning the maximum four gold medals. She spearheaded her Distrito Federal (D.F.) Women’s Team to victory; won the Women’s Singles from arch-rival Irania Lopez of Monagas; and took both the Women’s Doubles (with Ana Fernandez) and the Mixed (with Alexis Briceno).”
The Men’s Team was won by D.F. over Managas. The Men’s Singles by D.F’s Alexander Tovar over teammate Briceno. “The outstanding personality, however, was Carlos Bou Bou who appeared in Monagas state colours for the first time since leaving the state of Sucre. The people of Maturin have welcomed Bou Bou with open arms. And his personal magnetism was mainly responsible for the large crowd that attended the Team finals—the largest ever, in fact, seen at a table tennis championship in Venezuela.
Napolean Noriega, Vice President of the Managas TTA, was actually controlling the applause of the large crowd with his Band Master-like hand signals. The visiting teams were annoyed with this, but it brought more drama to the matches. I personally felt that Mr. Noriega’s act was a nice contribution to the Games, and certainly the crowd was enjoying it to the fullest. Mr. Noriega kept the situation well in hand and the crowd never verbally attacked or abused the visiting teams, and I sincerely hope that the visiting officials take a page from Mr. Noriega’s Book.
The only bad part of these Championships was the umpiring, which was not the fault of the Managas TTA but of the Venezuelan T.T. Federation that supplied the umpires. All the incidents at the Games were caused by the lack of knowledge of the umpires, and I hope the Federation will do something to remedy the situation soon, because such incompetence is spoiling the game.”
Winners at the Jan. 28-29 McLean, VA Winter Open: Open Singles: 1. Sean O’Neill, 3-0. 2. Brian Masters, 2-1 (d. Sakai,-15, 15, 19; d. Lilly, -19, 16, 17). 3.-4. Ron Lilly. 3.-4. Dave Sakai. U-2300: Sakai and Lilly didn’t play, split the prize money (Ron had been -9, 15, 13, -22, 17 tested in the semi’s by John Soderberg). U-2100: Joe Griffis over Larry Hodges. U-2000: Griffis over Jim Flannagan, then over Barney Reed. U-1850: Keith Minnich, 20, 21 over JohnWeinstein who’d advanced by Tom Steen, -19, 19, 14. U-3600 Doubles: Minnich/Steen over Anderson/Hall. U-1750: Minnich over Norm Labrador, -17, 23, 9, then over Bernie Lisberger. U-1600: Mike Gallimore over John Tebbe, 15, -15, 20, -14, 26. U-3200 Doubles: Sakai/Bob Powley over Hodges/Martin Staehlin. U-1450: Gallimore over Tom Soderberg, 19, -19, 14. U-1250: David C. Silvera over Anderson, 22, 20. U-1000: Anderson over Mark Mallen. Handicap: T. Soderberg over Jeff Soderberg. Handicap Doubles: Pat Donahue/Gary Peterson over Nate and Bob Sussman, 49. Senior’s: N. Sussman. 2. Tebbe. 3. Bill Steinle. Senior’s U-1700: Tebbe over Staehlin.
The Howard County Open #4, held Jan. 15 at the usual Columbia, MD Circuit, introduced “a new event (for which no Circuit points are offered) that will continue throughout the season—the Butterfly Invitational Handicap. Anyone can play, providing they also enter a rating event and play with a Butterfly blade and rubber (Butterfly equipment is sold at the tournament). Play follows the usual one-game, 51-point format, and there’s one prize—$100 to the winner. Opponent gets one point for every 20-point USTTA rating difference. Maximum spot: 36 points.”
Results: Open Singles: Sean O’Neill [the previous Circuit’s $1,000 first-place winner] over Mike Walk, -20, 9, 16, then over Don Garlinger. 3rd-Place: Walk over Bill Sharpe. U-2100: 1. Garlinger. 2. Walk. 3. Don Yabiku. 4. Mort Greenberg. 5. Steve Johnson. 6. Chauncey Ford. U-1900: Steve Delp over Bill Walk, 18, -11, 17. U-3800 Doubles: Marty Ness/Tom Steen over Greenberg/Kronlage. U-1700: Pier Galie over Selwyn Persad. U-1500: Chip Barnett over Erich Haring who’d advanced over Jerry Rozen, 20, 20. U-1300: Kevin Walton over Robert Fulton. U-1100: Prakash Chougule [who was leading Haring in Circuit points prior to this tournament] over Steven Banks. Handicap: Haring over Robert Fallon, def. Butterfly Handicap: Fallon ($100) over Phil Van Dusen who’d outlasted Chougule, 51-49. Junior’s: Jeff Harris over Chris Cwailina. Circuit leaders after this #4 tournament are: 1. Eric Haring (56). 2. Prakash Chougule (55). 3. Ha Chi Dao (40). 4. Pat Lui (38). 4. Sean O’Neill (38).
Readers may recall1 that at last year’s $1,875 Lehigh Valley Open (for seven years the most prestigious perennial tournament in the East), some USTTA members, as in the previous year at the Holiday Inn, caused problems—this time at the Luxury Budget Inn. Faced with this, Tournament Director Dan Simon had said, “Because of just a few acting rashly in the past, we all might have to suffer in the future.” Now, I sadly report, perhaps because there might not be any room in any inn in Bethlehem even for the most innocent, the Lehigh Valley Open has been permanently canceled.
Winners at the Jan. 21-22 Westfield Open: Open Singles: B.K. Arunkumar over Rey Domingo, 16 in the 5th. Earlier, Arun was challenged, 18 in the 5th, by Eyal Adini; and George Brathwaite, before falling to Domingo, had to go five with Fu-lap Lee. Women’s: 1. Alice Green. 2. Vicky Wong. Open Doubles: Arunkunar/Adini over Domingo/Brathwaite. Esquire’s: Mort Greenberg over John Kilpatrick. Senior’s: Brathwaite over Igor Klaf, -16, 14, 17. U-17: Chi-sun Chui over Chi-ming Chui, -17, 19, 18, 21. U-13: Final between Chi-sun and Chi-ming Chui not scored.
A’s: John Allen over Igor Klaf, 21, 10, 18. B’s: A. Green over John Andrade. B Doubles: Dave Llewellyn/Mitchell over David Valoy/Andy Diaz. C’s: Marv Plevinsky, 19, -18, 24, over Llewellyn who’d escaped Michael Henry, -6, 21, 14. D’s: Thomas Nazerbechian over Chi-sun Chui. D Doubles: Thomas and Ovidiu Nazarbechian over Lawrence/Ray Gabb. E’s: Rich Sosis over Chi-ming Chui. F’s: O. Nazarbechian over Soon-Guan Ow. F Doubles: Tony Gegelys/O. Nazarbechian over Mike Coke/Johnson who’d advanced over Nova Zakaev/Ahmed Guketlov, 19, 20. G’s: David Lotharp over Carl Skeete. I’s: Mark Schmookler over Larry Stein, -14, 20, 18, then over Luz Brown. J’s: Doug Holtzman over Leona Joyner. Unrated: N. Moc over A. Witonsley.
John Allen (Timmy’s, Feb.-Mar., 1984, 28) covers the Jan. 28-29 MIT Open. “It had a Most Improved Turnout compared to last year’s hazard-depleted draw. A prompt field of 138 entered 10 events, played on 14 tables (1 Joola) amid the more than satisfying conditions of the Dupont Gym, and competed for $1,050 and fancy trophies. Special thanks for the standout efforts of Tournament Director David Marcus, the Kalaghers, Warren Rasmussen, MIT, and the Club members for the well-run tournament. Despite the unfinished matches [the Gym had to be vacated at midnight?], the midnight finish, a long drive back to New York for some, or a cleaning of the Gym for others, it was, along with all the T.T. playing, a great gathering. With an earlier start and daylight savings time, the tourney would have been perfect.”
Results: Open Singles: B.K. Arunkumar and Rey Domingo didn’t get to play their final and split the prize money. Semi’s: as at the Westfield tournament the week before, Eyal Adini again forced Kumar into the 5th; Domingo had to go 19 in the 4th with Lim Ming Chui. Best quarter’s matches: Chui over Igor Klaf, 16 in the 5th; and Adini over George Brathwaite, -6, 20, 23, 19. Open Doubles: Brathwaite/Domingo didn’t get to play their final against Chui/Barry Dattel, who’d eked out a semi’s win over Arunkumar/Adini, and split the prize money. U-2200: Adini over Allen, 17 in the 3rd, then over George Cameron. U-2000: John Andrade, 19 in the 5th, over John Shareshian who’d outlasted Ralph Robinson, 19 in the 3rd. U-1850: Chi-sun Chui over Melvyn Maxwell. U-3400 Doubles: Keith Quenneville/David Hager over Larry Giles/Chi-sun Chui. U-1675: Kevin McNeil over Jeff Brastow. U-1500: James Davidson over Alex Landsman, 18 in the 4th. U-1325: Wayne Chan over Steve Yee who’d survived Manuel Latigua, -17, 19, 19. U-1150: Michael Bluestein over Francisco Ruiz.
You’ll note, in the last two tournaments above that I’ve given you the results for, the name Igor Klaf. New to the States, Igor brings with him the following impressive resume (from Timmy’s, Feb.-Mar., 1984, 10):