Thursday, September 18, 2008

Denver Qualifiers Determined

The 8 qualifiers have been determined at the 2008 Motorola Racquetball World Championships in Denver, the first event on the International Racquetball Tour's (IRT) 2008-09 calendar. Only three of the seeded qualifiers were successful on Thursday, as five lower seeded players beat their higher ranked opponents to make the main draw.

One of the five was Kane Waselenchuk, who has been playing like the former number 1 player that he is, and qualified for the main draw by defeating Andy Hawthorne, number 11 on the IRT, 11-4, 11-1, 11-2. Waselenchuk will now face Ben Croft.

But Waselenchuk was the only one of four Canadians to get to the main draw, as the three boys from Saskatoon were all defeated. Lee Connell lost to Japanese veteran Hiroshi Shimizu, 11-2, 9-11, 11-4, 11-8, who will next face Jason Mannino. Josh Keil lost to Andres Herrera, one of the seeded qualifiers to win on Thursday, 11-1, 11-1, 11-8. And Kris Odegard, former Canadian Champion, was defeated by Jose Rojas, 11-9, 11-7, 11-4.

Keith Minor has been playing like a major and reached the main draw by Alejandro Herrera in five games, 11-4, 2-11, 11-8, 8-11, 11-2. If Minor can beat his next opponent, Shane Vanderson, it will be a Minor victory but not a minor upset.

Jason Thoerner, the top seeded qualifier needed five games before defeating Alejandro Landa, 8-11, 11-2, 8-11, 11-6, 11-2. Next up for Thoerner will be Chris Crowther.

Herrera and Rojas will now play Jack Huczek and Alvaro Beltran, respectively.

The other two qualifers are Anthony Carson, who defeated Juan Herrera, 11-8, 11-8, 11-9, and Mexican Polo Gutierrez, who beat Travis Woodbury, 11-3, 11-2, 11-4. Carson goes against Mitch Williams and Gutierrez will face Rocky Carson in the main draw.

The main draw presented in seeding brackets from top to bottom (with IRT rank from the May 12, 2008 rankings) looks like this:

(1) Rocky Carson vs. Polo Gutierrez - THU 8:30 PM
(8) Chris Crowther vs. Jason Thoerner - THU 8:30 PM

(5) Shane Vanderson vs. Keith Minor - THU 5:30 PM
(4) Jason Mannino vs. Hiroshi Shimizu - THU 5:30 PM

(3) Alvaro Beltran vs. Jose Rojas - THU 4:00 PM
(6) Mitch Williams vs. Anthony Carson - THU 4:00 PM

(7) Ben Croft vs. Kane Waselenchuk - THU 7:00 PM
(2) Jack Huczek vs. Andres Herrera - THU 7:00 PM

What we here at The Racquetball Blog are wondering, of course, is will there be any QWs?

Follow the bouncing ball....

No comments: