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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Longview Farm Park - Return of the Bulgarian

After missing last weeks match Stan was itchy to get back on the court for a match.  We found a court at a really interesting park in west St. Louis County.  Longview Farm Park has one tennis court along with stables, walking trails, meeting space, pavilions and a playground.   The setting is beautiful, the court is nicely fenced, the court itself is slightly cracked but not in too bad of shape.   There were also some leaves on the court but that is to be expected at this time of year.

In order to make it interesting we started the match playing with Scott's racquets that he used in 1981 on the Hazelwood East high school team. Scott played number two singles for the Spartans behind local teaching pro from Creve Coeur Racquet Club, Steve Wall.  The racquets were Head Professionals known as "Red Heads" back in the day.  These racquets were developed by the Head Corporation after the Departure of Howard Head. 

Head left his own company and went to Prince a manufacturer of Tennis ball machines and developed and pioneered the first oversized racquets.  Anyway on to the match.   Scott stormed out to a 4-1 lead at which point he switched racquets to a vintage Wilson T-3000(originally developed by Rene Lacoste).  Stan came back strong and got back to 4-3.  At this point the best game of the match was played.

Two points stand out - first at Deuce Scott drove a wicked cross court return which Stan somehow retrieved, played himself back into the point and went on offense.  Scott in desperation and on the dead run whipped a vicious cross court passing shot to win the point.   At this point Scott began to "make love to crowd like Jimmy Connors 1991...  

On game point Scott hit a great down the line return and came to the net.   Stan got the ball back and Scott slipped on leaves falling flat on his back and watching Stan lob his volley back for a winner.  Stan ended up winning the game.    Scott then closed out the next two games for a 6-4 win.

The vintage racquets were retired and the second set began with modern equipment.  After a 2-2 start Stan went on a 12-0 run on his serving games and wins the second set at 6-4.   A 10 point tiebreaker was played in lieu of a third set and Scott ran off the first six points for a 6-0 lead.  Stan fought back to 6-8 but then couldn't hold on as Scott won the final two points.

Location rating was a 10 and court condition a 7( cracks caused several weird bounces) for a total of 8.5.

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