2nd Division Manomanista: Argote and Beroiz to dispute final by frontonnews
May 19, 2009, 10:16 pm
Filed under: Pelota Mano | Tags: , , , ,

The 2nd division Manomanista final, to be played on Saturday May 23rd at Beotibar, Tolosa, will be between 26 year old Jokin Argote of Asegarce and 19 year old Mikel Beroiz of ASPE. Argote reached the final by defeating Asier Arruti 22-11 in Villamediana de Iregua on Friday, while Beroiz qualified 24 hours later, beating the fancied Mikel Olazabal 22-14 in Tolosa. Argote, the older of the pair, has the greater experience and has two 2nd division pairs titles to his name from 2007 and 2008. Beroiz has never before played in a championship final but has looked impressive in reaching this stage, and clearly has a bright future ahead of him. An intriguing final is in prospect.

Young talent Mikel Beroiz

Young talent Mikel Beroiz

Advertisements


2nd Division Manomanista: Olazabal the comeback kid into the semi finals by frontonnews
May 2, 2009, 10:57 pm
Filed under: Pelota Mano | Tags: , , , , , ,

Friday 1st May
Aritzbatalde, Zarautz
OLAZABAL beat OLAETXEA 22-14

The crowd at Aritzbatalde in Zarautz was not sizeable but those who did turn out to witness this quarter final match between two young talents were treated to an enthralling tie. Mikel Olazabal, the 22 year old from Areso has turned a lot of heads since he entered the professional ranks in 2007 and is surely destined for the heights. In the ASPE forward’s way stood Mikel Olaetxea from Asegarce, two years his senior and with experience on his side. It appeared as if experience would win out, but that was to reckon without the tenacity of Olazabal.

For the first half of the game, Olazabal was forced to dance to Olaetxea’s tune. The young Navarran allowed himself to be dominated and appeared ill at ease under pressure. It was Olaetxea’s impressive service which won him his initial advantage. The man from Lizartza regularly sent the ball barrelling to the back of the fronton at the 100kph mark, and although Olazabal was adept at making contact, he found controlling his returns to be beyond his powers. It was not until the score stood at 6-1 to Olaetxea that Olazabal managed to duel with his opponent on equal terms. Indeed, it looked very much as if he had the point in his pocket until ambition got the better of him and his attempted winner off both walls fell short of the frontis. In the very next point, Olaetxea marched onwards by showing the younger player how such a shot should be played. Olaetxea’s other masterful tactic was to bombard Olazabal with high balls, forcing him to attempt ever riskier overhead volleys. For much of the time, he was up to the task and scrapped impressively, but the pressure wore him down. At 9-1, it seemed as if the die had been cast for Olazabal.

However, one error can open doors for an opponent who seems down and out and so it proved here. When Olaetxea hit too low, it was Olazabal’s turn to show that he would not lie down. After triumph in the dog fight of a point which reduced his deficit to five points, Olazabal unleashed his own serving power. For three points in a row, he served fast and long before winning with a drop shot into the corner, his opponent still rooted to the back of the fronton. It was a tactic so simple and so effective, and Olaetxea was powerless to stop it. Olazabal did concede the serve in the next play, when he attempted the same thing and undercooked it but it was only to cost him one point. From 7-11 down, the young pelotari raced to a lead of 13-11, his serve once again leading the way. He also proved adept at forcing Olaetxea into risky shots where he was often found wanting. Although Olazabal conceded another two points, the result never now seemed in doubt; Olazabal grew a foot taller while Olaetxea’s composure ebbed away with each passing shot. When the latter won serve at 14-20, he blew his last chance with an unnecessary error which, rather than inducing fury in its creator, sparked only resignation. Olazabal wasted no time in adding the points he required for a victory made all the more impressive for the fight back he was forced to produce.

Olazabal now proceeds to the semi finals, where he will face another young talent, 19 year old Mikel Beroiz on May 17th. The other semi final, to be held on the same day, will be between Jokin Argote and Asier Arruti. The latter booked his place yesterday by defeating Pablo Urrizelki 22-18.

Scoring sequence: 1-0, 1-1, 1-9, 2-9, 7-9, 7-11, 13-11, 13-12, 13-13, 14-13, 19-13, 19-14 and 22-14.

Mikel Olazabal

Mikel Olazabal



Mano matches on ETB-Sat tonight (Friday 13th March) by frontonnews
March 13, 2009, 1:27 pm
Filed under: Pelota Mano | Tags: , , , , , , ,

There are two mano matches from the Leiza Festival being shown live tonight on ETB-Sat (http://www.eitb.com/television/etb-sat/).  The first game is a singles encounter between two promising young players and the second a doubles match featuring recent pairs championship partners Sebastian Gonzalez and local hero Abel Barriola, this time on opposing sides.

22:25 (CET) APEZETXEA v ONGAY

23:35 (CET) GONZALEZ – BEROIZ v OLAZABAL – BARRIOLA

Jon Apezetxea

Jon Apezetxea

Image from: http://www.gaztezulo.com/bn_foto/61p60-1.jpg



Mano pairs: Aimar too hot for Olazabal by frontonnews

Saturday 24th January
Villa de Iscar, Iscar
Olaizola II/Mendizabal II beat Olazabal/Barriola 22-10

Aspe took a calculated risk in sending young and inexperienced Mikel Olazabal to Iscar in place of the injured Sebastian Gonzalez. Gonzalez and his partner Abel Barriola had a flawless record in the championship up to this weekend and were anxious to keep it that way with the help of the 22 year old substitute. However, standing in his way was the formidable obstacle of last years double txapela winner Aimar Olaizola. The promising Olazabal needed to find a way to better him, or at least contain him, if the Aspe pair were to have any chance but Aimar proved both both imperious and brutal. The forward from Goizueta utterly overwhelmed his rival, barely letting him draw breath in a devastating display of control. Under such unbearable pressure, Olazabal committed error after error while time and again, Olaizola demonstrated his merciless precision in closing out points. Barriola tried his best to compensate for the imbalance in forward play by covering as much of the fronton as he physically could but his play lacked the sparkle necessary to pressure the defending champions and Mendizabal was left to operate precisely as he wished. In truth the result could have been far worse for the Aspe pair given the 19-3 lead which their rivals at one point commanded. Two brief periods of score building saved them from total humilation but the result was never in doubt; Olaizola and Mendizabal march emphatically onward while Barriola prays for the return of Gonzalez.

Aimar Olaizola

Aimar Olaizola

Image from: http://www.gara.net/Repository/Imagenes/Pub_3/Issue_1996/p039_f02.jpg

Sources: El Correo, Diario Vasco



Mano pairs: Gonzalez injured, to be replaced by Olazabal by frontonnews
January 22, 2009, 11:00 pm
Filed under: Pelota Mano | Tags: , , ,

Sebastian Gonzalez, who partners Abel Barriola in the ongoing pairs championship will be forced to sit out his next scheduled match against reigning champions Aimar Olaizola and Oier Mendizabal on Saturday. Aspe report that the defender from Lapurdi is suffering from bursitis in his right knee and must undergo treatment involing antibiotics, anti-inflammatories and a compression bandage. His place in the match in Iscar will be taken by 22 year old Mikel Olazabal. This is surely a blow for the Aspe pair who have thus far taken three wins from three games and have been in scintillating form. Gonzalez has been far superior to his rivals in each of these encounters and has worked in excellent harmony with Barriola, who must now pull out all the stops as he attempts to continue their fine run with a new partner. Olazabal for his part must find a way to outwit Cuatro y Medio champion Aimar Olaizola.

Sebastian Gonzalez

Sebastian Gonzalez

 

Image from: http://www.larioja.com/prensa/noticias/200710/13/fotos/036D6GP1_1.jpg