STC members just finished one of their largest social events of the year, the Calcutta Social. Ninety-six players squared off in a two day round robin format tournament that had everyone guessing up to the final ball being played as to which team of eight players, four women and four men, would be crowned champions.
The event kicked off with a party held at the Activity Center on Monday night, March 26. It was filled to capacity. There for the first time, the 96 players learned the name of their teams and team roster. The food committee did an outstanding job of providing heavy appetizers that were not only delicious but also very plentiful. No one left hungry.
One might ask, “How were the teams created?” Well, it was done entirely by a blind draw. Each player was given a rating value based on many factors. Unlike USTA ratings, these ratings were in increments of one-quarter. Once entered into an Excel spreadsheet, the names were then hidden and the entire draw was done by seeing numbers only. The goal was to make the teams as equal as possible. After only four to five trades the teams, on paper, were equal. Only then were the names revealed. It was up to the players to prove which team was the best.
The teams were then auctioned off to the highest bidder and that person became the owner of the team. Team members had the opportunity to buy back 50 percent of the team from the owner, giving them a stake in the winnings.
The tournament consisted of four flights of three teams. They each played one another in an eight-game pro set. The winners from each flight played in the championship rounds on Wednesday. The scores and sets won were very close, sometimes just a difference of a few games deciding the winner.
On Wednesday, of the four matches played, three of the matches ended in a two-set to two-set tie. To get an idea how close these matches were, consider that one match was tied at 25-25, two had games won of 24-25 and one had games won at 29-24. The draw held up to its expectations. Not every line within the teams were equal, some teams might have had a stronger women’s line, but if so then they had a weaker men’s line. The goal was to make the teams as equal as possible, while still making sure the individual lines were close in ratings.
In the end the Lollilobbers came in first taking home bragging rights. Second place went to the Smashers and only separated by the narrowest of games, third place went to the Faulters.
After the last ball stopped bouncing the food committee had a BBQ party at the Tennis Center Pavilion, awards were handed out and everyone left in good spirits. There are simply too many people to thank for making such a large event possible. So here is a special thanks to all of those who assisted with the food, the two parties including the MC, spotters, and auctioneer, setup and tear down volunteers, the court coordinators and the Calcutta committee members. We as a club are very fortunate to have such giving members of their time and talents. Everyone in the club should be very thankful and hopeful that an even bigger and better event be planned again next year.