In a busy first day at the EiPSI Open, two CASA members secured their places in the quarter-finals, as four EiPSI members crashed out. Meanwhile, the late entry of Ping Cheng saw the number of participants further increase to 15.
Two out of three CASA members competing in this year’s open were in action today; both wasted little effort in booking their quarter-final places. Stan Korzilius kicked off by showing Thijs Laarhoven all corners of the tennis field; initially Thijs obliged by visiting them, but this turned out untenable. Sometimes clearly venting his frustrations, Thijs had to give in. One EiPSI member down, one CASA member through: 6-0, 6-0.
The other CASA member in action today, Valeriu Savcenco, won against Jan-Willem Knopper. The latter again failed to take a game and is now a strong contender for the fair-play award.
A similar scenario played out as SET member John Businge out-classed Antonino Simone by 6-1, 6-2, who despite a late comeback lost in straight sets, but will be content with his much-improved form compared to last year.
Another EiPSI-CASA match-up is scheduled tomorrow as fourth seed Meilof Veeningen takes up Iason Zisis. The winner will face John Businge for the semi-final place of what is probably the most open quarter of the draw.
At least one EiPSI member was sure to come through today unscathed though, as the fourth match of the day was an all-EiPSI encounter between Henk “Best Bagels” van Tilborg and third seed Milan Petkovic. With the first set finishing 6-0 to Milan “The Djoker”, it seemed as if Henk might retain his 100% efficiency rating, but that was not to be. In a match that showed remarkable similarities to last weekend’s Cincinnati men’s final, Henk managed to hang on to Milan’ coattails to make it 3-3 in the second set; however, he finally conceded a break, and Milan is through in straight sets to book a quarter-final ticket against Valeriu in yet another EiPSI-CASA encounter.
To set up a re-match of last year’s quarter final with Berry Schoenmakers, Sebastiaan de Hoogh had to overcome Ving Bui, a newcomer to the EiPSI Open from SAN. This turned out our bridge too far though. Sebastiaan managed to get a game, but it was Ving Bui who was the convincing winner, and who now has to play the “SENS vs non-SENS”-match against Berry.
Meanwhile, a last-minute intervention by first seed Berry Schoenmakers (who visited the Open on his resting day for some exhibition play with fourth seed Meilof Veeningen) ensured he is the only seed to progress to the quarter-finals without wasting any energy. According to the schedule released last Friday, both “Baseline” Berry and second seed Dion Boesten would receive a first-round BYE. However, the entry of Berry’s master student Ping Cheng ensured that Dion now also has to come in action, possibly tomorrow. With the stakes being as high as they are, no-one can be sure whether this is a a tactical move to tire out his competitors, or just a genuinely sympathetic gesture to his master student..