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Monday, March 12, 2012

2012 California Commemorative Cup - San Rafael

Read what Alain Efron has to say about the 2012 California Commemorative Cup, 
held on 11 March 2012 at La Petanque Mariniere in San Rafael.

Monday, March 12, 2012

photo  by Dan Feaster2012 California Commemorative Cup 

Sunday morning, before heading for the pétanque field, I tuned in to ABC for the latest weather forecast and the weather oracle was pretty categorical: the rain would start around 8:00 a.m. 
Not good. Everybody still remembers last year’s tournament when the event ended under pouring rain and in large puddles of water. 
This gloomy forecast didn’t deter the 20 following teams to show up on our field. They were:
1. Mike Menefee & Erin McTaggart
2. J-C Bunand & Verena Rytter
3. OB Brown& Tamara Efron
4. Jurgen Weise & Lynda Evans
5. Gene Howard & Barbara Howard
6. Alain Efron & Sabine Mattei
7. David Riffo Peggy Silverside
8. Dan Feaster & Nan Walker
9. J-C Etallaz & Genevieve Etallaz
10. Mike Cooper & Narin Garrett
11. Mickey Coughlin & Nicole Coughlin
12. Etienne Rijkheer & Claudie Chourre
13. Paul Iskin & Carolina Jones
14. Hans Kurz & Lisa Vaughn
15. Alain Gusella & Christine Cragg
16. Antoine Lofaro & Eva Lofaro
17. John Krauer & Jocelyne Krauer
18. Peter Wellington & Holly Sammons
19. J-M Poulnot & Shannon Bowman
20. Ed Porto & Teri Sirico 
I noticed that some fearless (should I say foolhardy?) married couples opted to play together in this tournament. In my playbook, this is a big no-no and I have the scars to prove it. To keep peace on the home front, one should never team up with his better half on the pétanque field. Ignoring this warning is daring fate.
Anyway, registration ended at 9:30 and by 10:00 a.m. we were ready to do battle.
Two 13 points qualification games were played before lunch, and in the afternoon 12 teams were eligible for the Concours and 8 teams ended up in the Consolante.
Incredibly, the weather held and we were even surprised in the afternoon by some sunshine. 
1st round
J-C Etallaz & Genevieve Etallaz defeated Gene and Barbara Howard
Hans Kurz & Lisa Vaughn defeated Mike Cooper & Narin Garrett
Alain Efron & Sabine Mattei defeated J-C Bunand & Verena Rytter
J-M Poulnot  & Shannon Bowman defeated OB Brown & Tamara Efron
Hans Kurz & Lisa Vaughn defeated J-C Etallaz & Genevieve Etallaz
J-M Poulnot  & Shannon Bowman defeated Alain Efron & Sabine Mattei
“Le Facteur” & Shannon Bowman defeated Hans Kurz & Lisa Vaughn

Quarter finals
Mickey Coughlin & Nicole Coughlin def. John Krauer & Jocelyne Krauer
Antoine Lofaro & Eva Lofaro def. Peter Welligton & Holly Sammons
Etienne Rijkheer & Claudie Chourré def. Erin & Mike
Semi finals
Ed Porto & Teri Sirico def. Mickey Coughlin & Nicole Coughlin
Etienne Rijkheer & Claudie Chourré def. Antoine Lofaro & Eva Lofaro
In the Final Etienne Rijkheer & Claudie Chourré faced Ed Porto & Teri Sirico
In my opinion, it was one the most exciting finals I have seen in the last 5 years.
Neither teams were heavyweights, but all were good players and the teams were pretty evenly matched.
Contrarily to what some people might think, it is not the shooter who wins the game, but the pointer. The shooter is just the enforcer, and without a good pointer all his brawn is for naught.
The first boule is always crucial. Technically and psychologically speaking, the first boule is of the utmost importance. It is the first banderilla in the bull’s neck. Not lethal, but annoying enough to rattle your opponents.
In the finals, Claudie “the Machine” Chourré did a fantastic pointing job. To Ed Porto’s utter frustration, most of Claudie’s shots came within 5 inches of the cochonnet and Ed had to shoot (and waste precious balls) to secure his turf.
Teri did a good job and had flashes of brilliance, but was ultimately outclassed by the Machine.
Etienne (a relative unknown in Marin) surprised many people by his shooting abilities. He took chances and it paid off. He doesn’t have the grace of a natural shooter, but he was efficient and held more than his own against Porto.
A deserved victory for Claudie and Etienne.
Etienne Rijkheer & Claudie Chourré def. Ed Porto & Teri Sirico (13/7)
Congrats to all!

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