Despite a dominant performance by ProKennex’s Kane Waselenchuk at the Krowning Moment Pro Invitational Internacional in Edinburg, TX last weekend (April 30-March 3, 2015), when he conceded zero games and less than 10 points per match, “The Champ” remains at #2 on the May 4, 2014-2015 IRT rankings. Head Penn’s current world #1 ranked Rocky Carson played solidly earlier in the week and delivered a mixed performance in the final (losing game two -1 to 11), yet improved upon his semifinal finish at the 2014 Ektelon Battle of the Ages in Stockton, CA last season to extend his 2-point advantage to 78 points over Waselenchuk.
The rest of the top 8 positions remain largely unchanged after April events, even with major differences in results for some players. Alvaro Beltran gave Kane the best test of the weekend in the semis, but ultimately fell and dropped about 100 points to maintain #3. Daniel De La Rosa improved on his result from last year, taking out Jose Rojas in the quarterfinals and falling to Rocky in the semis. Nevertheless he remains at #4. Rojas’ point loss might have pushed him down a spot in the rankings, if not for Ben Croft missing the event. Both players drop points but remain at #5 and #6 respectively. Jansen Allen retains his points and position at #7, while Marco Rojas and Charlie Pratt gained points, but remain at #8 and #9.
Tony Carson and Chris Crowther continue to bleed points due to tournament absences, but Tony is competing in the ProKennex Tournament of Champions tier one, which should help him maintain his lead over #10 Alejandro Landa. Crowther’s point loss cost him one ranking spot, now #12. Jose Diaz lost his round of 16 points from last year but still holds #13, just ahead of Matt Majxner, who lost his round of 32 points. The top 16 is rounded out by Robert Collins and Tim Landeryou, who both gained round of 16 points at the most recent event to pass Danny Lavely, who slides down two spots to #17.
With only two full-prize money events left on the IRT schedule, Waselenchuk, takes his fight for number one into what could be a virtual home field advantage for ProKennex’s most-winning champion, at the 2015 ProKennex Tournament of Champions May 14-17th before the Fresno Summer IRT Kick-off May 28-31. Waselenchuk will be shooting for both titles as he works to reclaim his crown and finish the season in the #1 spot.
Turmoil at the top combined with a buzz of the tight point race in the number-5 to -9 positions keeps the excitement building as the results of the last two tier one events will provide serious intrigue to close out the season.
Online registration for the ProKennex Tournament of Champions (5/14-5/17) is open until Thursday, 5/7/2015 at 12:00 PM. (Central Time). Phone entries and online registration will be accepted for the Fresno Summer Kick Off IRT ProAm (5/28-5/31) through Friday 5/22/2015 8:00 PM Central. Late online entries accepted with an additional $5 fee until Saturday 5/23/2015 by 6:00 PM (Central Time). For more information about the International Racquetball Tour (IRT) click www.irt-tour.com
By: Tim Landeryou