Wednesday, June 18, 2014

17th IRF World Championships - Singles Round of 16

They're down to the final 8 in Men's and Women's Singles at the 17th International Racquetball Federation (IRF) World Championships in Burlington, Ontario, Canada, and there was really only one surprise, and it happened in the most dramatic fashion.

Canadian Christine Richardson, playing front of her home crowd, defeated 3rd seed Maria Paz Muñoz of Ecuador, 14-15, 15-11, 11-10, earning the win on her 5th match point.

Muñoz - the 14th ranked Ladies Professional Racquetball Tour (LPRT) player - had a big lead in game one at 12-4, but the Canadian kept working away, and found a serve that Muñoz didn't like: a half lob with a bit of pace to Muñoz's backhand. Richardson rode that serve at the way to 14-14, only to have the Ecuadorian close out game one, 15-14.

In game two, Richardson led all the way, but Muñoz got close at the end before Richardson finished it out.

In the tie-breaker, Richardson took a 6-0 lead, but Muñoz tied it at 6-6, and then went ahead 7-6. However, Richardson, who principally hit a drive Z serve to Muñoz's backhand, got to 10-7, but then stalled there.

Muñoz seized the opportunity to come back and tie the game at 10-10. Richardson is a former World Junior Champion, but is playing at the Worlds for the first time and is making only in her second appearance on Team Canada, seemed to show a bit of nervousness, as four match points went by without her capitalizing.

But Richardson fended off a match point against her, and then changed her serve from a hard drive Z to an off speed Z, and closed out the match with a solid down the like backhand to advance to the quarterfinals.

Richardson will face Maria Jose Vargas of Argentina in the quarters, as Vargas defeated Ana Gabriela Martinez of Guatemala, 15-5, 15-5.

On the top of the draw, Americans Rhonda Rajsich and Aubrey Kirch faced off, and it also needed a tie-breaker to decide it, as top seed and former World Champion Rajsich dropped the first game to her young team-mate before coming back to win 11-15, 15-11, 11-4.

The win puts Rajsich in the quarters, where she'll face Cristina Amaya of Colombia, who also needed a tie-breaker, despite shutting out her opponent Carla Muñoz of Chile in game one, as the Chilean came back to win game two only to fall short in the tie-breaker, 15-0, 9-15, 11-8.

On the men's side, there expected players won, including top seeds Rocky Carson of the USA and Tim Landeryou of Canada. Carson defeated Daeyong Kwon of South Korea, 15-4, 15-1, and Landeryou beat Noslen Jimenez of Cuba, 15-11, 15-10.

There were a couple of men's matches that were upsets by the seedings, but they weren't real surprises. Conrado Moscoso of Bolivia - seeded 11th - defeated beat 6th seed MIchimune Kono, 15-9, 15-11, but Moscoso is the current World Junior Champion in U18, so it's not a bit surprise for him to do well here too.

The singles quarterfinals will go Wednesday with the semi-finals on Friday and finals on Saturday. 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 Singles

Round of 16

Rocky Carson (USA) d. Daeyong Kwon (South Korea), 15-4, 15-1
Sebastian Franco (Colombia) d. Takaaki Hirose (Japan), 15-11, 15-8

Alejandro Herrera (Colombia) d. Jose Daniel Ugalde (Ecuador), 15-11, 8-15, 11-4
Jose Rojas (USA) d. Edwin Galicia (Guatamala), 15-4, 15-10

Polo Gutierrez (Mexico) d. Andres Aviles Solera (Costa Rica), 15-6, 15-6
Conrado Moscoso (Bolivia) d. Michimune Kono (Japan), 15-9, 15-11

Carlos Keller (Bolivia) d. Mingyu Kim (South Korea), 15-7, 15-6
Tim Landeryou (Canada) d. Noslen Jimenez (Cuba), 15-11, 15-10


Rocky Carson (USA) v. Sebastian Franco (Colombia)
Alejandro Herrera (Colombia) v. Jose Rojas (USA)

Conrado Moscoso (Bolivia) v. Polo Gutierrez (Mexico)
Tim Landeryou (Canada) v. Carlos Keller (Bolivia)

Women's Singles

Round of 16

Rhonda Rajsich (USA) d. Aubrey Kirch (USA), 11-15, 15-11, 11-4
Cristina Amaya (Colombia) d. Carla Muñoz (Chile), 15-0, 9-15, 11-8

Veronica Sotomayor (Ecuador) d. Michèle Morissette (Canada), 15-11, 15-6
Samantha Salas (Mexico) d. Sofia Soley Saborio (Costa Rica), 15-1, 15-3

Christine Richardson (Canada) d. Maria Paz Muñoz (Ecuador), 14-15, 15-11, 11-10
Maria Jose Vargas (Argentina) d. Ana Gabriela Martinez (Guatemala), 15-5, 15-5

Jin Young Seok (South Korea) d. Jung Eun Ane (South Korea), 15-11, 15-13
Paola Longoria (Mexico) d. Jenny Daza (Bolivia), 15-9, 15-1


Rhonda Rajsich (USA) v. Cristina Amaya (Colombia)
Samantha Salas (Mexico) v. Veronica Sotomayor (Ecuador)

Christine Richardson (Canada) v. Maria Jose Vargas (Argentina)
Paola Longoria (Mexico) v. Jin Young Seok (South Korea)

Follow the bouncing ball....

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