Friday, June 20, 2014

17th IRF World Championships - Doubles Quarterfinals

As in singles play, history will be made in the doubles competition at the 17th International Racquetball Federation (IRF) World Championships in Burlington, Ontario, Canada, as a South American team will be in the Men's Doubles final after wins by Bolivia and Colombia in the quarterfinals on Thursday.

Colombians Alejandro Herrera and Sebastian Franco are the bigger semi-finalists, as they faced the Mexican team of Alvaro Beltran and Edson Martinez. However, they prevailed in a tie-breaker, winning 15-14, 6-15, 11-9.

The loss means Mexico will leave Burlington without a medal from the men's competitions, as Beltran and Polo Gutierrez lost in singles prior to the semi-finals.

The Colombians will face Bolivians Conrado Moscoso and Mario Mercado in the semi-finals, as they defeated Cesar Castillo and Cesar Castro of Venezuela, 10-15, 15-6, 11-9, in the quarterfinals.

The other semi-final will be between long time rivals Canada and the USA, as they each won their respective quarterfinal matches in two straight games.

Canadian veterans Mike Green and Vincent Gagnon beat Shai Manzuri and Daniel Maggi of Argentina, 15-7, 15-7, and Americans Ben Croft and Tom Fuhrmann, who's playing in his first international event for the US, beat Fernando Rios and Jose Daniel Alvarez of Ecoador, 15-11, 15-13. The Americans were down late in game two, but came back to win it and prevent a tie-breaking third game.

On the women's side, top seeds and two time defending World Champions Paola Longoria and Samantha Salas Solis of Mexico beat Bolivians Natalia Mendez and Adriana Riveros, 15-5, 15-12, in one quarterfinal, and will play the Chilean veteran Angela Grisar and Carla Muñoz in the semi-finals, as the Chileans came from a game down to defeat the Argentine team of Véronique Guillemette and Maria Jose Vargas, 8-15, 15-3, 11-8.

On the bottom of the draw, second seed Aimee Ruiz and Janel Tisinger of the USA had a comfortable win over Maiko Sato and Naomi Wakimoto of Japan, 15-7, 15-3. The Americans will face Maria Paz Muñoz and Veronica Sotomayor of Ecuador in the semi-finals, as the Ecuadorians upset the 3rd seeded Canadian team of Frédérique Lambert and Jennifer Saunders, 15-6, 7-15, 11-8.

After dropping the first game, it looked like the Canaddians had righted the ship, as they won game two by a comfortable margin, and were up 8-2 in the tiebreaker. However, the young Ecuador team kept working away, and managed to come back and win.

The teams were stuck at 8-6 in Canada's favour for four team side outs, and there was a sense that the team that broke that stalemate would win the match. And Ecuador did it.

It's the first time Canada has not medaled in Women's Doubles at the World Championships.

There will be live streaming of the semi-finals and finals on Friday and Saturday via the IRF Network.

17th IRF World Championships
June 14-21, 2014
Burlington, Ontario, Canada

Men's Doubles


Ben Croft & Thomas Fuhrmann (USA) d. Fernando Rios & Jose Daniel Alvarez (Ecoador), 15-11, 15-13
Mike Green & Vincent Gagnon (Canada) d. Daniel Maggi & Shai Manzuri (Argentina), 15-7, 15-7

Conrado Moscoso & Mario Mercado (Bolivia) d. Cesar Castillo & Cesar Castro (Venezuela), 10-15, 15-6, 11-9
Alejandro Herrera & Sebastian Franco (Colombia) d. Alvaro Beltran & Edson Martinez (Mexico), 15-14, 6-15, 11-9


Ben Croft & Thomas Fuhrmann (USA) v. Mike Green & Vincent Gagnon (Canada) - 5 PM Friday
Conrado Moscos & Mario Mercado (Bolivia) v. Alejandro Herrera & Sebastian Franco (Colombia) - 5 PM Friday

Women's Doubles


Paola Longoria & Samantha Salas Solis (Mexico) d. Natalia Mendez & Adriana Riveros (Bolivia), 15-5, 15-12
Angela Grisar & Carla Muñoz (Chile) d. Véronique Guillemette & Maria Jose Vargas (Argentina), 8-15, 15-3, 11-8

Maria Paz Muñoz & Veronica Sotomayor (Ecuador) d. Frédérique Lambert & Jennifer Saunders (Canada), 15-6, 7-15, 11-8
Aimee Ruiz & Janel Tisinger (USA) d. Maiko Sato & Naomi Wakimoto (Japan), 15-7, 15-3


Paola Longoria & Samantha Salas Solis (Mexico) v. Angela Grisar & Carla Muñoz (Chile) - 3 PM Friday
Aimee Ruiz & Janel Tisinger (USA) v. Maria Paz Muñoz & Veronica Sotomayor (Ecuador) - 3 PM Friday

Follow the bouncing ball....

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