We had a great weekend with our friends from the Belgium IC. It started with five USIC members meeting the Belgium team at Penn Station in NYC and providing transportation for 31 and all their baggage out to Long Island for the event. I had rented a huge passenger van that seated 15 to help ferry all the Belgium players and significant others around with. The train was delayed and there was rush hour traffic to deal with, but snacks were provided and everyone made it safely to the hotel.
That evening the out-of-town USIC team members met up for dinner and to reminisce about prior events, while the Belgium team unpacked and ate a casual dinner at the hotel. Saturday began with Brunch provided in my backyard (Bagels with all the fixings) for both teams followed by tennis matches at the Old Westbury Country Club. We got through two complete rounds of tennis – singles and doubles. We were provided an afternoon snack at the club (wine, cheese, fruit and veggies). Then back to my house for a casual barbeque dinner in my backyard. Transportation to and from the hotel for all of these events was once again provided.
Sunday started off the same with Brunch in by backyard and then tennis at the Old Westbury Country Club. We played only one round of doubles that counted towards the event. The matches were all very competitive and the Belgium IC team won some very close fought battles. Robert Van Malder was presented with the actual Broward Craig trophy to keep until our next meeting after some heart felt words. We were once again provided a very nice snack at the courts. The second round of tennis was a friendly doubles match made up of one USIC and one Belgium IC player per team. We had the formal dinner with IC ties on at a local restaurant overlooking the water that evening. Speeches were given by Michel de Marneffe, Gordon Aydelott who was kind enough to fill us all in on who Broward Craig the man was and myself (partially in French). The Belgium team made Margaret Lumia and Ronnie Kahn honorary members of the Belgium IC. We made Pierre Mignot an honorary member of the USIC. Once again transportation to and from the hotel was provided for all these events.
On Monday US Open tickets were provided for all the players and guests to enjoy a day exploring Flushing Meadows and watching some real tennis players in action. Most of the Belgium IC team and out-of-town USIC team flew home on Tuesday morning. We were very fortunate with the weather all weekend which was warm and sunny. All in all, it was an incredibly successful event. Everyone had a great time. Old friendships were renewed and new ones made. My ordinary life of saving lives has felt drab in comparison and I am only now coming back down from the post USIC match depression that I have become used to experiencing. Robert Van Malder is already actively planning our return trip to Belgium in 2024 to include a visit to the Battle of the Bulge. I am sure we will have no trouble rounding up players to go from the USIC team who was at this event.
Broward Craig Trophy Wrap Up
1. Jeremy de Bodt (Be) def Ben Rosen 6-1, 2-6, 1-7
2. Lionel Krings (Be) def Jayson Morgenstern 6-3, 6-3
3. Adrian Pagani (US) def Koen Bergs 6-0, 6-1
4. Michael Cunningham (US) def Philippe Heirebaudt 3-6, 6-1, 10-7
5. Eric Lingg (Be) def Paul Wulf 6-2, 6-0
6. Alain Carlier (Be) def Mark Harrison 6-4, 6-0
7. Andrew Adler (US) def Alain Desaever 6-1, 6-7, 11-9
8. TC Lackey and Margaret Lumia (US) def Leo Coene and Tanja Van Malder 6-2, 6-3
9. Robert Van Malder and Pierre Mignot (Be) def Jeff Snow and Gordon Aydelott 6-1, 1-6, 10-6
10. Ronnie Kahn and Doug Barrow (US) def Michel de Marneffe and Patrick Hombergen 6-0, 7-6 (5)
11. Stephen Berliner and Ted Pearce (US) def Daniel Charles and Rudy Michielsen 6-2, 6-2
12. Diane Guns and Karine Biver (Be) def Hana Guy and Kris McDonald 6-4, 6-3
13. Jeremy de Bodt and Lionel Krings (Be) def Ben Rosen and Adrian Pagani 6-3, 7-6(6)
14. Koen Bergs and Alain Desaever (Be) def Fabian Carchi and Paul Wulf 4-6, 6-4, 10-7
15. TC Lackey and Michael Cunningham (US) def Alain Carlier and Philippe Heirebaudt 7-6, 6-4
16. Robert Van Malder and Karine Biver (Be) def Mark Harrison and Akiko Tohmatsu 6-3, 7-5
17. Anthony Barton and Gordon Aydelott (US) def Patrick Hombergen and Leo Coene 6-3, 6-2
18. Fabian Carchi and Jeff Snow (US) def Jeremy de Bodt and Patrick Hombergen 6-4, 7-6 (5)
19. Eric Lingg and Alain Desaever (Be) def Paul Wulf and TC Lackey 6-2, 4-6, 10-7
20. Robert and Tanja Van Malder (Be) def Ted Pearce and Margaret Lumia 6-2, 6-2
21. Leo Coene and Karine Biver (Be) def Don Tansey and Kris McDonald 6-2, 7-5
22. Ronnie Kahn and Hana Guy (US) def Pierre Mignot and Diane Guns 6-1, 6-2
23. Jayson Morgenstern and Michael Cunningham (US) def Christophe Thijs and Koen Bergs 6-4, 6-3
Final Score Belgium 12, US 11