This is a current awareness blog that links to the latest sources of information on Basque Pelota matches and Tournaments. It covers both North and South Basque modalities: Mano, Main Nue, Pala, Paleta, Remonte, Cesta Punta, Jai Alai, and minor modalites. We link to match articles, statistics and video highlights and/or full match videos.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Main Nue--Transition from Spring to Summer

With the completion of the Championnat de France (Elite Pro A) (Elite Pro B) the Spring and Summer has transformed into a series of tournaments and weekly scheduled matches. The list of tournaments and their value from now until the end of the year is at the Esku Pilota calendar page. In addition, there are scheduled 50 point matches on Mondays at Trinquet Garat, Donibane Garazi  (Saint-John-Pied-de-Port), and on Thursdays at Trinquet Saint-AndreBaiona (Bayonne). Information on these matches largely comes from Esku Pilota and varies from simple score, to score with statistics, articles, and/or full match videos.

Before we talk about the matches or tournaments that have taken place since we last discussed Main Nue we must talk about the increase in access to these matches. The video coverage of matches has increased to the point where it is becoming difficult for the viewer to keep up.  Since the final of the Trophee de Cize on May 16, there have been 8 full match videos presented by Esku Pilota and available at either their web site or their Youtube site. Most of these have also been linked to from pelotelive.free.fr, which is excellent for our purposes because once you have located the tournament (search for Specialite: "main nue" or "main nue individuel"; Organisateur:  "Esku Pilota" and Saison: "2015-16" to locate information for the entire tournaments, along with video links) you can immediately see the larger context of each of the tournaments. Combining the two major sites will give you a select combination match stories, match graphs, linescores, videos, and/or analyses.  Note that with all videos located at pelotelive.free.fr, you must click on the "desactiver" under the video in order for the video to work. pelotelive.free.fr automatically resets every 30 seconds and this will stop the video and kick you back out to the site if you do not "disactiver" first.

In these 8 full match videos we have seen (rankings out of 26--all players ranked together as of June 27, 2016, when available, are in parentheses) front courters Aguirre (17), Bidiondo,  Bielle (11), Darmendrail,  Elgart (14), Etchegaray (8), Larralde (1), Olcomendy (15), Ospital (7), and Monce (10),

And back courters Amulet (6), Bilbao (3), De Ezcurra (5),  Guichandut (4), Ducassou (2), Harismendy (20), Inda, Irribaren, Iturbe, Lucu, and Migueltorena. (Rankings are based on how well players do in tournaments, weighted by the importance of the tournaments). This is an excellent combination of young talent, established stars, and long time veterans. If you watch the matches and tournaments that we will discuss and point to, you will see 9 of the top 10 and 13 of the top 15 players ranked at Esku Pilota. And you will see the best of them at the moment (Larralde and Ducassou) a lot. A feast lovingly provided by Esku Pilota. Speaking as a relatively new fan of Main Nue, it has been fantastic to watch. And certainly not easy to provide by an organization that has nowhere near the fiduciary strength of an Asegarce or ASPE (with the backing of a large commercial TV network). Merci beaucoup Esku Pilota!