The second Annual Boenning Cup honoring Dick Boenning, the founder and first Chairman of the United States Court Tennis Preservation Foundation, was held at Prince’s Court on the three day Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend.

The invitational tournament, open to donors to the Preservation Foundation, drew 12 entrants including visitors Peter Bender and Bill Cartier. The event is designed in part to encourage the use of the Real Tennis Online doubles handicap system. Players enter as individuals and are paired with different partners and play different opponents in each match. Ivan Ronaldson and Phil Shannon, Head Professional and Assistant Professional, respectively, at Prince’s Court drew and marked the tournament brilliantly especially by having virtually all of the matches involve players of similar standard. The finalists are the four whose handicaps have improved the most in the course of the weekend. This year, every player had four 2-out-of-3 set matches with the third set starting at 3 all. Nobody complained of playing too little!

On Saturday evening Simmy and Haven Pell hosted a dinner at their house at which Ambassador Grassi regaled the group with his usual uplifting remarks. He kept a stiff upper lip despite the death earlier in the week of George MacDonald Fraser, author of his beloved Flashman novels.

The results are shown in the table below and the finals pitted Haven Pell (3.2 point improvement) and Michael Moore (2.0 point improvement) against Rich Moroscak (1.2 point improvement) and Stephen Sears (0.8 point improvement). The final was played off Receive 1/2 30 – Owe 30 with Moroscak, an 8.4 handicap doubles player, and Sears, playing out of his mind, giving away a huge advantage. The first set went 6-5 to Pell and Moore leading to a shift in the serving order that gave the second 6-3 to Moroscak and Sears, but alas Pell and Moore finished the second set at the hazard end. The second serving order switch was likely the margin of victory for Moore and Pell in the 6-3 final set. Unless it was Moore’s blistering railroad that he practices alone at seven in the morning or nine at night.

For Michael Moore is was his maiden court tennis victory while Haven Pell also received the most improved player award.

Final results:

SATURDAY 19th January
9am J.Motz B.Barker V R.Moroscak R.Carey 5/6 6/5 4/6
10.15am R.Carey S.Sears V M.Philpott H.Pell 0/6 3/6
11.30am K.Motz B.Barker V J.Motz R.Moroscak 1/6 1/6
12.45am P.Bender T.Grassi V M.Moore B.Cartier 5/6 6/4 3/6
2pm H.Pell S.Sears V M.Philpott K.Motz 6/2 6/1
3.15pm P.Bender M.Moore V T.Grassi B.Cartier 6/2 6/0
SUNDAY 20th January
9am B.Barker M.Philpott V K.Motz M.Moore 1/6 4/6
10.15am R.Moroscak H.Pell V J.Motz R.Carey 6/5 6/4
11.30am P.Bender B.Cartier V B.Barker T.Grassi 6/4 4/6 3/6
12.45pm S.Sears K.Motz V R.Moroscak M.Philpott 6/4 6/5
2pm P.Bender R.Carey V H.Pell T.Grassi 3/6 3/6
3.15pm S.Sears B.Cartier V J.Motz M.Moore 6/4 6/4