Arizona Croquet Club

17th annual

US OPEN 2004

December  8-12 (Wednesday-Sunday)


The US Open croquet tournament is an annual event hosted by the American Croquet Association (ACA).  The ACA was founded by Stan Patmor to provide representation for American players in the Croquet Association in England.  This tournament is played at Mission Hills and Indian Ridge Croquet Clubs in Palm Springs, California and is held annually during the first week of December.  Tournament rules follow the Laws of Association Croquet as played throughout the British Commonwealth.  The US Open is both competitive and social.   In most years, there are 3 flights of play.  The Championship Open flight is available to players of all handicaps.

Here is more Information concerning the US Open:

*Where and When:*  The 17th annual U.S. Open championship will again be
held in Palm Desert & Rancho Mirage, California from  December 8 through
December 12 (Wednesday through Sunday).The "Opening night" cocktail
party will be Tuesday evening (Dec. 7th) at the Indian Ridge Country
Club from 4:00 to 6:00 PM. .

*The Competition: Open  Flight, "A" * open to all players, however the
block(s) will be filled with the lowest handicap players applying.
*Second  Flight, * [4.5 handicap or more] some discretion is allowed here.

*Rules:*  Advanced rules of Association Croquet as codified in / The
Laws of Association Croquet/, 6th edition (the blue book) but with a 2
hour time limit.

*Player Requirements:* Players must be members in good standing of the
ACA, or any association recognized by the WCF before beginning of play.
The postmark on your entry form will be the basis for your entry date.

*Format: * The first round of play will be block play. A seeded,
single-life play-off (repessage) will be used to determine the champion.
Players will  drop into this chart (about the top 1/2) based upon their
results in block play. Top finishers will receive one or more byes
(Patmor Draw). Most games will be double banked.  The final game of the
Open flight will be best 2 of 3. Saturday a  plate event will follow  
block play (this my continue on to Sunday).

*Balls:* Wilhoit "Extreme".....*Hoop Gauge:*3 11/16 inches..

*Dress:* Croquet Whites, Jacket may be needed for evenings.
Entry Fees:*...$235...Fee includes Tuesday (Dec. 7) cocktail party at
Indian Ridge C. C.,  morning coffee and rolls and day long beverages at
court-side Wednesday through Sunday, and the Sunday court side Luncheon
with a bloody Mary bar at Mission Hills Croquet Courts. Midweek will be
BBQ time again, this year at the Desert Patch Inn on Friday after play,
come as you are.

Monday Dec.2 One on one coaching available if 3 or more sign up in
advance.(pay the coach $40 per hour)
Sunday Court Side Lunch with bloody Mary bar* (12/8) ...$ Mission

*Non-Player Fee*...$80...includes the opening cocktail party, midweek
BBQ, Finals luncheon and court side refreshments daily.

Please notice that we will not be providing daily lunches. However,
there are many eateries near by and we will include some suggestions
with the confirmation letter./
Tournament Directors:* Stan Patmor and  Rory Kelley

*Tournament Referee:* TBA

*Accommodations:* Rory and I have stumbled upon a nicely refurbished
1950's motel that is just what we always look for when going to croquet
tournaments It is called The Desert Patch Inn in Palm Desert (rates from
$62 to $112). Mention croquet to receive a discount, and call early,
there are not many rooms and they are already being spoken for. We are
having the Friday barbecue there and there will be periodic
get-to-gethers for cocktails and conversation.

*Transportation:* Fly into Palm Springs or fly to Ontario, Calif...,
rent a car and head East. You will need transportation during the
tournament If you would like to fly to Phoenix earlier for some knock-up
games then ride to California (and back) with one of the Arizona players
contact Stan or Rory (see below)

*Sanctioning:* By the ACA & USCA (Individuals wishing to pay the USCA
sanction fee add $8 to your entry fee).

*Entry Deadline:* November 19. Withdrawal before 11/19 will result in a
complete refund less $20.
After that date a refund of $100 is offered unless a replacement player
is available. We will help as much as we can in finding a replacement.*
The winner of this year's US Open (Championship level) Flight will be
entitled to draw upon an ACA travel fund during the next calendar year.
The fund will be available to the "Open Flight" winner upon being
selected to play on any U. S. team or U. S. C. A. group of players
competing with players from another WCF country.  The amount to be
deposited to this fund will be a minimum  of $500.   The winner can
apply for this stipend following their selection by the U.S.C.A.
selecting committee by contacting Stanley Patmor.  

Stanley Patmor (602) 955-1547  e-mail at
Rory Kelley (480)-990-1126
Desert Patch Inn (800) 350-9758


Association rules singles tournament in 2 flights

"Open" flight players have 3 (2 hour) games per day in block play (Wed. Thur. & Fri.)

"B" flight will play 2 (2 hour) games per day in block play

Plate event(s) Sat. & Sun.

To be held on 8 courts in the greater Palm Springs area

Format: same as Sonoma-Cutrer except best 2 or 3 final in the Open flight (2 hour time limit)

December 8 through 12 (Wed. - Sun)
Entry fee $235, (includes USCA sanction fee) Social fee $80, Sunday brunch only $45

Tue. Opening cocktail party, Fri. BBQ, Sun. court side lunch with bloody Mary bar and daily coffee, rolls & soft drinks and sort of an open bar most nights at the Desert Patch Inn(a good place to stay)

Both flights are limited to assure a full day's play for all entrants

e-mail or call tournament director Stan Patmor for more detailed information 602.955.1547

To enter fill in below and return. Your check puts you on the schedule.





            SUN. BRUNCH ONLY:

3056 N. 32ND STREET
PHOENIX  AZ  85018


The US Open Croquet tournament was once again a wonderful event.

Mission Hill Country club just added these two new lovely courts at their scenic venue.
It is simply amazing how well these two new courts played - fast and level.

The competition was challenging.  Brian Cumming, from Canada, is the USCA Nationals 2004 winner.

Jerry Stark, croquet pro at Meadowood Resort, is also competitive.  

Len Lyon, Rich Lamm, 2002 and 2003 US Open winner, and Charlie Smith discuss strategic points together.

Paul Billings, visiting from Hawaii, chatting with Cameron Guernsey, from Seattle, WA.

Bill Aden from Mississippi relaxing during his game with Jim Butts.

Jim Butts, president of Mission Hills croquet club, roqueting black.

Cameron taking off with yell to pick up the blue and black balls sitting in the corner.

Dick Tucker, past president, looking over the situation in Championship flight play.

Gordon Smale rolling up to his next hoop.

Leo Nikora, from Hawaii, and Elaine Fong, Western Regional president enjoying the croquet at the new lawns.

Mike Orgill sets a ball in bounds 36 inches from the boundary.

Mike taking a swing.  Notice that his mallet is curved at the bottom like the keel of a boat.

The social parties are great for getting to know the players.

Brian Cumming, Chuck Anders and Paul Billings.

Stan Patmor barbeques bangers at the The Desert Patch Inn.
Many of the players stay at the Patch and link up for dinner during the nights.

The players are anxious to find out where they place in the ladder after round robin block play.

Phyllis Butts and Aviv Katz.

Josie and Stewart Jackson enjoying everyone's hospitality in Palm Springs.

Tyler Thomas, from Kentucky, and Bee Katz.

The grass tennis lawn makes a spectacular croquet lawn.  It is very flat and fast.  

Jerry Stark finishes off Rory Kelley with steady play.  Spectators attentively relax in the shade.

Brian Cumming eliminates Stewart Jackson in the playoff ladder to meet Jerry Stark, then Rich Lamm and in the finals Paul Bennett.
In block play, Rich Lamm and Paul Bennett were undefeated and played a best of three match - one advanced
to the best of three finals and the other met the winner of the ladder playoff Brian.

The Open Ladder.  Brian worked his way on Saturday into the finals with 4 straight wins.
Paul Bennett beat Brian with a on time finish 24/15 during the first game and a sixth turn triple peel 26-0 second game.

Brian congratulating Paul Bennett the 2004 US Open Champion.

Everyone watches the last game of the day.

Margot Leonard working through the B ladder playoff.

B ladder playoff - Bob Riddell wins again!

Stewart Jackson plays Rory Kelley in the finals of the Plate event.

Rory Kelley eyes the stake to win the Plate.

The Plate event is a competitive ladder playoff.

Trophy presentations and sincere thank you to Mission Hills, members of the croquet club,
Stan Patmor and the competitors that make the US Open a great tournament.

The trophy winners at the 2004 US Open
Paul Bennett, Brian Cumming, Bob Riddell, David Collins, Josie Jackson, Margot Leonard, Rich Lamm.

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last updated  20 December 2004