Just in case anyone had any doubts what would happen if Mark Parsons and Johan Du Randt played together again, there you have it, they won one more time. With their win over defending champs, nationals champs and #1 team in the country Broderick-Gambino, Mark and Johan showed everyone why they are the best two players and the best team there is out there.

Although when Mark and Johan won the 2011 Long Island Invitational a lot of the top players where there, this weekend the 2012 Chicago Charities Men’s Draw featured the very best players in the country. Of course, there were a few notables missing (Matt Porter, Drew Eberly, Flip Goodspeed and Brad Easterbrook) but everyone else was in Windy City.

Du Randt and Parsons only lost two games in their first three matches played yesterday. Their quarter final match, also played on Saturday, was a different story. They faced Ben McKnight and Pete Rose, who are probably the best team to never be in the top 10 (for now!). Ben and Pete forced the eventual champs to play their best paddle. With everything tied at 5-5 Du Randt and Parsons executed better and went back to the hotel for a well deserved rest. As usual, semis were scheduled for today Sunday.

Both semis were played this morning and match-ups couldn’t have been better. Du Randt-Parsons played versus Juan Arraya and Lennart Jonason, who at this point were on a 14-match streak going back to the Patterson Club Open. The first two sets were pretty close but in the end Johan and Mark were the better team. Final scores were 6-4, 5-7, 6-2 and now to wait for the second semis to end.

Defending Champs Drew Broderick and Chris Gambino were playing against the “Cinderella” of the tournament Scott Bondurant and Mark Johnson. Although there were not seeded, Bondurant-Johnson made it to the semis in Nationals only 19 months ago and have been a contender to all major tournaments during at least the last five years. After winning the first set 6-4, Scott and Mark seemed to run out of gas. Broderick-Gambino took the next two sets 6-3, 6-1 and were back in the final.

The final was all Mark and Johan. A 6-4, 6-3 win leaves them with an undefeated record as a team and will definitely leaves everyone else thinking how the heck to beat them! Although no rankings have been released yet this season, with the win in Chicago Du Randt-Parsons will be in the top 10 in the country.

The tournament left a few questions unanswered:

  • Can anyone beat Du Randt-Parsons? Not for now…
  • Is there a need to make Chicago a 64-teams draw? The top 8 seeded teams only lost 14 games in their first round matches, COMBINED!!!
  • Is the best paddle in Chicago or in the North East? There is no need to answer this one…
Pictures courtesy of the APTA
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