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Entries in Stuart Lawrence (43)

Thursday
Apr202017

Chapman 02: Tough Day at the Office

New Zealand's Chris Shilling in play on Day 2 versus Team USA Day 2 was another day of doubles for New Zealand, with Aiken Hakes & Toby Garrison taking on Jeff Soo & Stuart Lawrence, Paddy Chapman & Jenny Clarke taking on David Maloof & Ben Rothman, and Joe Hogan & Chris Shilling taking on Danny Huneycutt & Stephen Morgan. As it turns out, it was a tough day at the office for New Zealand.

Jeff & Stuart won their match 2-1 - in the third game, NZ were TPOing the Americans, but failed to gain a rush to peg out Jeff's ball. Stuart held his nerve to finish his 4-ball break to the peg and take the victory. Paddy & Jenny were involved in a high-quality first game versus Ben and David, however the second game contained a number of unexpected errors. In the end, it went to a decider, with NZ having a TP opportunity to win but missing a 7-yard return after rover with all the peels done. From there, the Americans took the game and match 2-1, with a +2 scoreline in the third. At the time of writing, Joe & Chris' game has been pegged down, with the match score currently 1-0 to the Americans. The situation in the second game is USA penult and box vs NZ 4b and peg.

It is very unusual for a match to last so long on such easy lawns, however it just goes to prove that MacRob is different from usual tournaments, with a lot more determination to win from all players. The pegged-down ending will hopefully be played to a conclusion sometime over the next couple of days.

Thursday
Apr202017

Soo 03: US Picks Up Two More Wins

USA's Ben Rothman peels rover en route to putting his team up 4-1NZ vs. USA continued in doubles while Australia vs. England switched to singles. Chapman & Clarke (NZ) quickly took the lead against Rothman & Maloof (USA), +17tp with Chapman tripling. In Hakes & Garrison (NZ) vs. Lawrence & Soo (USA), Soo failed a triple attempt but then hit the opponent's leave to take game 1. No croquet for Lawrence & Soo in game 2, Hakes finishing with a tidy triple. Hogan & Shilling (NZ) vs. Huneycutt & Morgan was only getting around to finishing game 1 by that point, Huneycutt hitting the peg from corner III to win the game.

On the upper lawns, Burch (England) breezed to a +26tp, +26tp win over Hockey (Australia), leveling the test match at 2-all. Death (England) vs. Forster (Australia) was a three-triples match, Death winning the outer games to put England ahead. World #1 player Robert Fletcher (Australia) righted the ship for his team with two triples to beat Mulliner (England), the second following a failed sextuple attempt by the Englishman (and current World Champion). Greg Fletcher (Australia) vs. Hopgood (England) was another three-triples match, Fletcher overcoming a game 1 loss to put his team ahead again.

With only seven lawns available, two singles matches had a late start. In the Captain's match, Dumergue (Australia) had all the action in a +26tp, +26tp win over Patel (England). Malcolm Fletcher (Australia) had a heartbreaking game 1 loss to Maugham (England), having all but finished the triple but then missing a short roquet; Maugham controlled the rest of the match to make it an even start in the singles. Australia leads the test match 5-4.

Soo had a 4th-turn OSL to begin game 3; Hakes then had a bit of good luck in snicking off the peg to roquet. His TPO attempt never seemed in doubt, until his luck was reversed at rover, where his ball crept through just the wrong amount on the Irish peel. He was able to roquet the escape ball, but failed to get a rush back to the peg. Lawrence finished off the contact to extend the Americans' lead to 3-1.

An exchange of errors led to a game 2 win for Rothman & Maloof. Chapman was set to finish the match in game 3, but a jump through rover and lack of a proper deep ball left a seven or eight yard shot, which he missed. Down 0-24, Maloof went round and Rothman tripled to ensure another winning day for USA.

Hogan and Huneycutt both struggled in game 2. Hogan finally got a ball around and pegged out Morgan's ball, with Huneycutt for 3-back and Shilling for 4-back. A couple of turns later the game has been pegged down. It is NZ to play, with Hogan's ball just south of the peg, Shilling's ball a few inches out of corner I, and Huneycutt in position at penult (his hoop).

Wednesday
Apr192017

Soo 02: Day 1 Reveals Easy Conditions

Smiles for the Aussies as Dumergue & Forster win to give their team a 2-1 lead over England

Both test matches started with doubles, as usual. The English got on the board quickly, Maugham & Hopgood winning 2-0 over Robert & Malcolm Fletcher (Australia) with a pair of Maugham triple peels. Next to finish were Soo & Lawrence (USA) over Hogan & Shilling (NZ), the Kiwis not taking croquet and Lawrence tripling on turns seven and ten, for an excellent MacRobertson Shield debut. Rothman & Maloof (USA) each had a triple peel in their 2-0 win over Garrison & Hakes (NZ), putting USA up 2-0. In the Burch & Death (England) vs. Forster & Dumergue (Australia) match, Burch had a quick triple to win game 1. Death did a TPO in game 2, but Forster finished to level the match.

ROUND ONE PHOTO GALLERY

On the lower lawns, Greg Fletcher tripled to win game 1 with partner Hockey (Australia) against Mulliner & Patel (England). Mulliner did most of a DPO in game 2, but missed the pegout, giving Fletcher an easy finish, which brought Australia level with England for the test at 1-all. In Clarke & Chapman (NZ) vs. Huneycutt & Morgan (USA), Clarke had some struggles with control, but Huneycutt couldn't find his shooting touch, the Kiwis winning 2-0 to bring the test match score to 2-1 in favor of USA.

Aussie captain Dumergue put together a well-controlled triple peel to end the day's play and put his team up 2-1 in the test.

By test match standards, the conditions are very easy. The lawns are a comfortable medium pace, and the combination of sandy (and well-watered) soil and powder-coated hoops makes for easy hoop-running and peeling. In the afternoon the wind picked up, giving a taste of what could be the main challenge during the series. Thus far 11 of the 13 games have finished with triple peels, and this rate of tripling seems likely to continue.

Saturday
Apr082017

Soo #06: Morgan vs Soo

Stuart Lawrence in doublesThe remaining doubles semi-final finally finished, Danny Huneycutt and Stephen Morgan winning game two, which had been spread over three days.

The singles plate has a three-way tie on +2 net wins, with two more players on +1, so there's still plenty to play for.

I made it to the singles final and will play Stephen Morgan. Morgan will be looking to become the simultaneous holder of the GC and AC national singles titles, while I am hoping to pick up my second AC singles title.

The doubles final has already started. My partner Stuart Lawrence and I won game 1 +18. Each side has a clip on 4b in game 2. Huneycutt and Morgan have the innings, but we are next to play when we restart.

CroquetScores.Com Results:
croquetscores.com/2017/ac/us-national-championship

Friday
Apr072017

Soo #05: AC Nationals Down to Four

Ian HarshmanIn the singles quarterfinals, Danny Huneycutt's uncharacteristically shaky form continued, which allowed me to win 2-0. Dan Pailas gave plenty of fight but likewise went down 2-0 to Stuart Lawrence. Brian Cumming v. Chris Patmore opened with a quick Cumming triple, but Patmore fought back with an extended 3-ball ending and leveled the match. The third game was more error-prone, Cumming winning. Simon Jenkins v. Stephen Morgan had some similarities, particularly in the error-prone game 3. Morgan survived, ending an impressive run by Jenkins, who had started the singles blocks 0-4.

The singles plate is underway as a flexible Swiss. Jim Bast and Wayne Davies are undefeated.

The pegged-down doubles match had to wait for the end of the Jenkins v. Morgan quarterfinal, leaving just over an hour to play. The match has once again been pegged down in game 2, and will resume first thing Friday.

Jeff Soo vs Stuart Lawrence
Brian Cumming vs Stephen Morgan

2017 USCA AC Nationals Singles Knockout:
croquetscores.com/2017/ac/us-national-championship/singles-ko 

Thursday
Apr062017

Soo #04: AC Nationals-Into The Knockout

Danny Huneycutt jokes with his opponentWhen Simon Jenkins beat Ian Harshman in the final round of the block, he made three people very happy: himself, Mike Taylor, and Sherif Abdelwahab, all of whom were now in a playoff for 4th place in Block B. And he made two other people, well, sigh in resignation: Harshman, who would be the fourth player in that playoff, and the tournament manager.

And, five hours later, Jenkins was still smiling, having played his way into the main singles knockout. He and Taylor then began their doubles semi-final with Danny Huneycutt and Stephen Morgan. Huneycutt and Morgan won the first game, and the match has been pegged down in game 2.

Meanwhile, the other doubles semi-final was able to start much earlier. Stuart Lawrence and Jeff Soo beat Wayne Davies and Daniel Pailas in two games. Lawrence tripled to finish the first, adding to the day's relative flurry of peeling.

The knockout shapes up as follows:

Jeff Soo vs Danny Huneycutt
Daniel Pailas vs Stuart Lawrence
Brian Cumming vs Chris Patmore
Simon Jenkins vs Stephen Morgan

Full Results: croquetscores.com/2017/ac/us-national-championship

Wednesday
Apr052017

Soo #03: Tiebreakers Dead Ahead

Mike TaylorWhile there were some faster games today, there were still plenty of games going to time, including a 14-11 barn-burner in which Jenkins played Aunt Emma tactics to beat Pailas. Pailas has now beaten the top four seeds in his block but lost to two of the lower-ranked players; he can guarantee a spot in the knockout by winning his final game. A four-way tie for second place remains possible in this block. As does a four-way tie for fourth place. Which could also happen in the other block. The manager rather hopes that none of these scenarios transpires. But it does look highly likely that playoff games will be needed to determine the Elite Eight.

Some key matches for the final block games:

Huneycutt v. Lawrence: Lawrence is already in the KO; Huneycutt needs a win, or a loss from Bast.

Bast v. Osborn: An Osborn win and a Huneycutt loss creates at least a three-way tie for fourth in Block A

Patmore v. Morgan: Morgan is already in; Patmore assures himself a spot by winning

Cumming v. Taylor: Taylor desperately wants a win, although even with a loss he could still make a playoff

Jenkins v. Harshman: Jenkins still has an outside chance to make a playoff with a win; Harshman can guarantee at least a playoff spot with a win

Tuesday
Apr042017

Soo #02: Windy Start for USCA AC Singles

Dan Pailas in play at the National Croquet Center for the 2017 US AC Nationals
Four rounds of singles block play were scheduled for play at the USCA Association Croquet Nationals yesterday, but only three rounds were played. Despite the 3:15 time limits, many games have gone to time. Stronger wind today added to the challenge of fast lawns, solid hoops, and hoop hills. Stuart Lawrence had the day's only successful triple peel.

Every player has at least one loss. Block A has a six-way tie for first place on 2/3. Block B merely has a four-way tie for first. Net points will not be used as a tiebreaker, so there remains a strong possibility that extra tiebreak rounds will be required on Wednesday.

CroquetScores Results: USCA AC Nationals

Tuesday
Jan242017

Morning Coffee: US Announces MacRob Roster?

There was certainly a bit of drama in the long wait for the US MacRobertson Shield roster line-up. I was sort of expecting a Livestream press conference with fireworks, cheerleaders and some AC/DC. Alas, the roster quietly appeared on the Americas forum on Croquet World Online. The report there names Jeff Soo, Ben Rothman, Danny Huneycutt, David Maloof, Matthew Essick

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Dec182016

Abdelwahab in Control of US GP

Updated on Tuesday, December 20, 2016 at 07:47PM by Registered CommenterDylan

Looking at the current USCA Grand Prix standings, it appears as though Sherif Abdelwahab is on his way to claiming the 2016 race. The standings below were pulled from the USCA website on December 18, 2016, and show that Abdelwahab is just ahead of Stuart Lawrence. From our last glance at the end of August, the positions are exactly switched.

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Oct162016

2016 USCA Nationals Championship Flight-Final Knockout

Full bracket for the 2016 USCA Championship Flight Singles held October 9-15, 2016 at the National Croquet Center in West Palm Beach, Florida. Brian Cumming took the title with a 26-17 win over Stephen Morgan. Morgan had advanced with a 26-8 win over Derek Wassink.

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Oct162016

2016 USCA Nationals Championship Doubles Results

Updated on Monday, October 17, 2016 at 07:58AM by Registered CommenterDylan

Results from Championship Flight Doubles at the 2016 USCA National Championship at the National Croquet Center in West Palm Beach, Florida, held October 9-15, 2016.

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Oct132016

2016 USCA Nationals Championship Knockout

The playoff bracket and plate bracket for the 2016 USCA Nationals Championship Flight:

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Oct132016

2016 US Nationals Championship Block Results

Full results from the 2016 US Nationals being held this week at the National Croquet Center in West Palm Beach, Florida ...

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Monday
Sep052016

Lawrence Leads USCA Grand Prix

Heading into fall Stuart Lawrence now leads the 2016 USCA Grand Prix. Our last look at the USCA Grand Prix race was at the end of the April and this snapshot taken on August 31 has a number of new players in the rankings:

Click to read more ...