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.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Jai Alai/Cesta Punta--Aritz Erkiaga's amazing week at Miami Jai Alai

On the right side of this blog, the last bullet point under "recurring results" is a link to Miami Jai Alai weekly player data that is kindly provided by Tiger's Jai Alai Chalk Talk Discussion Forum. Miami Jai Alai plays a form of the game called Quinella Jai Alai. It supports a roster of 36 players. It keeps accounts of these players' records on a daily basis. The week at Miami runs from Wednesday to Monday. If you take the Monday record and subtract the previous Monday's record from it, you get a weekly accounting of all players records. (I link to those Monday records also). Or you can let Tiger do it for you and present the results to the forum. It gives followers of this sport valuable information and helps keep track of many players.

Last week (August 29-September 5), when the records came out they were eye-popping. For the week Aritz Erkiaga led the roster.

Player----Games Played----Wins----Places (2nd place)----Shows (3rd Place). Selected winning percentages and "in the money" percentages are also provided.

Aritz----39----16----5----5 .410 winning %, .667 "in the money" %

The next best four players had 7 wins apiece. Less than half of Aritz' wins. If you look at the weeks I have copied and then go to the forum and look at a few of the weeks Tiger has compiled you will quickly see that a ratio of 2/1 for the top player over the second best player is very rare. Aritz dominated his competition in a way few players do. So much so that I thought it would be interesting to take a closer look at how he did it. When you look closely at a Quinella player's statistics, you soon get an appreciation for just how difficult it is to play this form of the game, physically of course, but mentally even more so.

My findings are linked to at the bottom of this page. In those findings, I also lay out a few of the standard things that a player on this roster has to deal with in order to succeed. Many of you already know these things, and so in the report I have cued you where to skip over if you wish and simply get to the essence of things, Aritz' amazing week, day by day.

Before that, however, I will offer two links.

1. A single Quinella game. This game was played June 25, 2016 at Dania Jai Alai and featured two of the regular players in the recently completed Summer partido season in the South and North Basque (Leke--Unai Lekerikabeaskoa and Erik Mendizabal). The game takes 14 minutes and 43 seconds and will show you Quinella Jai Alai at its finest. It will also show you why a feat like Aritz' was so difficult.

2. A final Match that Aritz participated in in Basque Country summer partidos in 2014 (Source: International Jai Alai Players Association Youtube site). It gives you a flavor for the quality of Aritz' play.

MY ARTICLE: Analysis of Aritz' great week.