Maui Croquet Club CROQUET NEWS:  United States Open Won by Ben Rothman

  Place Player, State [Rank]
  1st Ben Rothman, CA United States of America [#14]
  2nd Doug Grimsley, VA United States of America [#33]
  3rd Jerry Stark, CA United States of America [#52]
  4th Tony Le Moignan, JER Jersey [#23]
  5th Brian Cumming, ON Canada [#46]
    Jim Bast, TX United States of America [#49]
  7th Stephen Mulliner, ENG England United Kingdom [#5]
    Danny Huneycutt, NC United States of America [#25]
    Paul Bennett, AZ United States of America [#51]
    Bob Van Tassell, CA United States of America [#296]
  11th Jim Butts, CA United States of America [#200]
    Charlie Smith, CA United States of America [#288]
  13th Steve Johnston, MO United States of America [#]
  14th Johnny Mitchell, TX United States of America [#204]
    Jon Essick, NC United States of America [#406]
  16th Leo Nikora Maui Croquet Club, HI United States of America [#188]
    Ron Hendry, CA United States of America [#232]
    Martyn Selman, CA United States of America [#402]
    Rich Schiller, CA United States of America [#]
  20th Rory Kelley, AZ United States of America [#300]
    Arthur Bagby, AL United States of America [#]

8-12 December 2009
Mission Hills Country Club, Rancho Mirage, CA, USA United States of America
by Leo Nikora

Click to Enlarge  
Ben Rothman wins the United States Open for the first time.  

Ben Rothman of California beat Doug Grimsley of Virginia in the finals of the United States. This was Rothman's first United States Open win (see past winners).

Twenty one people from the United States, England, Jersey, and Canada played on ten double-banked courts at the Mission Hills Country Club in Rancho Mirage, California. The players' world rankings (before the tournament) ranged from #5 to #406. The courts were in wonderful condition, and three new court had been added. The weather was cold most days, but no rain; and there was snow in the mountains.

Two blocks of ten played a full round-robin. The winners of each block entered medalist play, and the next four finishers of each block advanced to knockout play. The winner of medalist play advanced to the finals of knockout play, and the loser advanced to the semi finals of knockout play. Players eliminated from the blocks and knockout competed in plate play.

Advanced Association Rules were followed. Games were two hours long, with last turns and sudden death if necessary. Wilhoit balls were used. Rory Kelley directed the tournament.

A wonderful champagne brunch was held beside the court during the finals of the event.

Pictures are posted in the Maui Croquet Club Gallery.

Knockout

  Year Winner, State
  2009 Ben Rothman, CA United States of America
  2008 Doug Grimsley, VA United States of America
  2007 Jerry Stark, CA United States of America
  2006 Paul Bennett, AZ United States of America
  2005 Jerry Stark, CA United States of America
  2004 Paul Bennett, AZ United States of America
  2003 Rich Lamm, CO United States of America
  2002 Rich Lamm, CO United States of America
  2001 David Maugham England United Kingdom
  2000 Jeremy Dyer England United Kingdom
  1999 Jacques Fournier, AZ United States of America
  1998 Jacques Fournier, AZ United States of America
  1997 Leo McBride, ON Canada
  1996 Don Fournier, Jr, AZ United States of America
  1995 Mik Mehas, CA United States of America
  1994 Phil Arnold, CA United States of America
  1993 Wayne Rodoni, CA United States of America
  1992 Bob Rebuschatis, CA United States of America
  1991 John Taves, CA United States of America
  1990 Bob Rebuschatis, CA United States of America
  1989 Wayne Rodoni, CA United States of America
  1988 Neil Spooner Australia

The second through fifth finishers of the two blocks (Blue Block and Black Block) were seeded into an eight-player single-elimination knockout, with matches being one two-hour game. The winner played the loser of the medalist in the one two-hour game semi-final match. The winner of the semi-final match played the winner of the medalist in the best-of-three two-hour games final match.

  (1st) Doug Grimsley,
VA United States of America [#33]
Rothman
26-14tpo
1-26tp
26tp-0
(2nd) Paul Bennett,
AZ United States of America [#51]
Bast
26-12tpo
Le Moignan
26tp-9
Rothman
26tp-9
Rothman
26tp-0
(5th) Jim Bast,
TX United States of America [#49]
(4th) Tony Le Moignan,
JER Jersey [#23]
Le Moignan
26tp-19
(3rd) Danny Huneycutt,
NC United States of America [#25]
(3rd) Ben Rothman,
CA United States of America [#14]
Rothman
26-25
Rothman
26tp-10
(4th) Stephen Mulliner,
ENG England United Kingdom [#5]
(5th) Bob Van Tassell,
CA United States of America [#296]
Cumming
22-21
(2nd) Brian Cumming,
ON Canada [#46]
  (2nd) Jerry Stark,
CA United States of America [#52]

Medalist

The winners of the two blocks (Blue Block and Red Block) played a best-of-three two-hour games medalist match. The winner advanced to the final match of knockout play, and the loser advanced to the semi-final match of knockout play.

(1st) Doug Grimsley, VA United States of America [#33] Grimsley
26tp-0, 26tp-6
(1st) Jerry Stark, CA United States of America [#52]

Plate

The sixth through tenth and eleventh finishers of the two blocks (Blue Block and Black Block) were seeded into an ten-player single-elimination plate, and the losers of the first two rounds of the knockout were also added to the plate.

  Jim Bast,
TX United States of America [#49]
Smith
26tp-0
Huneycutt
26tp-0
Huneycutt
26-6
  (6th) Rory Kelley,
AZ United States of America [#300] (withdrew)
Matthew Essick,
NC United States of America [#] (substitute)
Smith
26tp-3
(7th) Charlie Smith,
CA United States of America [#288]

Smith
17-14

(9th) Ron Hendry,
CA United States of America [#232]
(10th) Martyn Selman,
CA United States of America [#402]
Mitchell
26tp-1
Huneycutt
26tp-0
Huneycutt
26tp-0
(7th) Johnny Mitchell,
TX United States of America [#204]
  Danny Huneycutt,
NC United States of America [#25]
  Paul Bennett,
AZ United States of America [#51]
  Brian Cumming,
ON Canada [#46]
Cumming
26-20
Cumming
26-2
  Stephen Mulliner,
ENG England United Kingdom [#5] (withdrew)
Johnston
(default)
(8th) Steve Johnston,
MO United States of America [#]
Johnston
15-10
(10th) Rich Schiller,
CA United States of America [#]
(9th) Jon Essick,
NC United States of America [#406]
Essick
26-1
Butts
26-1
Butts
26-12
(8th) Leo Nikora Maui Croquet Club,
HI United States of America [#188]
  (6th) Arthur Bagby,
AL United States of America [#] (withdrew)
(11th) Jim Butts,
CA United States of America [#200] (substitute)
  Bob Van Tassell,
CA United States of America [#296]

Blocks

There were two ten-player blocks: Blue Block and Red Block. Each block played a full round-robin, with matches being one two-hour game. The top five players advanced to knockout play.

* playoff game
Blue Block
Rothman Le Moignan Grimsley Bennett Butts Smith Van Tassell Selman Essick Johnston Bagby
Ben Rothman,
CA United States of America [#14]
3rd
7, +98
26tp-9     26tp-0   26tp-1 26-4 26tp-9 26-8 26tp-1
Tony Le Moignan,
JER Jersey [#23]
  4th
6 wins
      26-0 26tp-17 26-0 26tp-0 26tp-0 26tp-1
Doug Grimsley,
VA United States of America [#33]
26tp-0 26tp-0 1st
8 wins
25-24   24-22 15-14 23-16 26-0 26-9  
Paul Bennett,
AZ United States of America [#51]
26tp-0 26tp-10   2nd
7, +109
26dp-13 26tp-0   26tp-5 26-9 26-9  
Jim Butts,
CA United States of America [#200]
    26-22   11th
2, –35
        16-9  
Charlie Smith,
CA United States of America [#288]
        26-1 7th
3, –35
  18-10     26tp-0
Bob Van Tassell,
CA United States of America [#296]
      26tp-0 22-13 25-10 5th
5 wins
20-9 26tp-0    
Martyn Selman,
CA United States of America [#402]
        26-1     10th
2, –60
    26-14
Jon Essick,
NC United States of America [#406]
        20-6 26-11     9th
3, –76
18-10  
Steve Johnston,
MO United States of America [#]
          19-9   18-16   8th
3, –59
26-4
Arthur Bagby,
AL United States of America [#]
        10-8   14-6   17-16   6th
4 wins

* playoff game
Red Block Mulliner Huneycutt Cumming Bast Stark Nikora Mitchell Hendry Kelley Schiller
Stephen Mulliner,
ENG England United Kingdom [#5]
4th
6 wins
    26sxp-1   26-0 26-0 26-10 26-2 26-1
Danny Huneycutt,
NC United States of America [#25]
26tp-10 3rd
7, +84
26tp-9     26-0 26tp-5 26tp-8 26tp-8 26tp-7
Brian Cumming,
ON Canada [#46]
26tp-0   2nd
7, +121
26tp-0   26-1 26-15 26-2 26-0 26-0
Jim Bast,
TX United States of America [#49]
  26-1   5th
5 wins
  26tp-0   26-16 26-9 26-0
Jerry Stark,
CA United States of America [#52]
26-9 26tp-0 26tp-0 23-17 1st
9 wins
26-16 26-3 26-5 26-8 26-0
Leo Nikora Maui Croquet Club,
HI United States of America [#188]
          8th
3, –117
26-15 26-18   13-11
Johnny Mitchell,
TX United States of America [#204]
      26-0     7th
3, –42
26-20   26-6
Ron Hendry,
CA United States of America [#232]
              9th
1 wins
  26-4
Rory Kelley,
AZ United States of America [#300]
          26-1 25-23 26-4 6th
4 wins
26-0
Rich Schiller,
CA United States of America [#]
                  10th
0 wins