Sunday, May 23, 2010

Can and Am Championships starting this week

The pro racquetball seasons are over, but there are still national champions to be decided in Canada and the USA. The Canadian National Racquetball Championships kick off Sunday in Burnaby, British Columbia and the USA National Singles Championships begin Wednesday in Houston, Texas.

There's extra incentive for the players this year, as they will be looking to qualify for their respective national teams and compete in the International Racquetball Federation (IRF) World Championships to be held in Seoul, Korea in August.

The Canadian event begins with doubles competitions first and then singles competitions. In the men's doubles event, Vincent Gagnon and François Viens are the two time defending champions, but this year there's a new and intriguing team in Mike Green and Kris Odegard. Green has finished runner up to Gagnon and Viens the last two years with different partners but doesn't want to again, so he has teamed up with the reigning singles champion in Odegard to try and take the title he was won on 5 previous occasions.

Green's also won the Canadian singles title 5 times, while Odegard has two singles titles to his name, but has yet to win the Canadian doubles title.

On the women's side, Josée Grand'Maître and Jennifer Saunders will be looking to defend their doubles title and take their sixth title together. If they do so, it would be Grand'Maître's 11th doubles title overall, as she's also won with Lori-Jane Powell (2001), Lucie Guillemette (1998), Carol McFetridge (1994), Vicki Shanks (1993) and Nadia Verilli (1990).

We'll have more on the Canadian singles event and the doubles results in the coming days as well as previews of the US National Singles Championship.

Follow the bouncing ball....

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