MEP vs ET Players - Original TT Epic

Who wins?

  • Ian to dish out bagel and a stick

    Votes: 9 9.1%
  • Ian Wins

    Votes: 43 43.4%
  • Ian just manages to win

    Votes: 22 22.2%
  • Green shirt teaches Ian a lesson

    Votes: 6 6.1%
  • Green shirt wins

    Votes: 13 13.1%
  • Green shirt shocks the tennis world

    Votes: 6 6.1%

  • Total voters
    99
  • Poll closed .
Am assuming that Ian is classifying Sean as the equivalent of a USTA 4.5 since the video is titled "4.5 NTRP play". That makes sense as Sean is clearly competitive with MEP who has an official USTA rating... The indoor league Sean plays looks to be much stronger than USTA so his 4.0 rating there is irrelevant.
The only caveat is the indoor and environmentally controlled court, which MEP is unaccustomed to, vs an outdoor, environmentally uncontrolled court, which MEP is accustomed to and is more suited to his defensive style.

I think if the match took place in Atlanta in July outdoors, Sean would not be nearly as close. For one, Sean hit some very nice winners/forcing shots that MEP would likely track down on a slower court outdoors.
 

jmnk

Hall of Fame
He only was willing to put money on his top 4.5 singles guy. Which could mean a UTR 10 for all we know. Not a very big risk. OTOH, if it was a UTR 7, that would be a big risk.
clearly seems that way. So he wanted to prove that @GSG is not 4.5 level player because he would get beaten, badly, by that fairly recent college player. Who, again, if I get his name correct:
  1. has not lost a match in that @tlm league in three years, playing #1 singles.
  2. has lost 1 (one) set in three years
  3. has won men's open tournament in 2018 in Chicagoland area by losing 5 (five) _games_ in five matches
  4. has played qualifying tournament in 2018 to get into _ATP Challenger level_ tournament in Winnetka, IL

I mean if that does not scream USTA 4.5 level I do not know what does....... :rolleyes:
 
As far as getting bumped up goes - USTA looks at scores not just wins losses. Thats why you can go 14-1 and not get bumped. Grinding out wins isn't the same as blowing people off the court.. If you blow someone away who is blowing other people away - you can get bumped.
Personally, if I'm winning 90+% of my matches at-level, I'd want to get bumped up, even if the majority of them were close. I'd probably get bumped right back down the following year but c'est la vie. Whether he gets bumped is irrelevant; the point is, he's a strong 4.5 [unless most/all of his matches were very close against lower-level 4.5s].
 
clearly seems that way. So he wanted to prove that @GSG is not 4.5 level player because he would get beaten, badly, by that fairly recent college player. Who, again, if I get his name correct:
  1. has not lost a match in that @tlm league in three years, playing #1 singles.
  2. has lost 1 (one) set in three years
  3. has won men's open tournament in 2018 in Chicagoland area by losing 5 (five) _games_ in five matches
  4. has played qualifying tournament in 2018 to get into _ATP Challenger level_ tournament in Winnetka, IL

I mean if that does not scream USTA 4.5 level I do not know what does....... :rolleyes:
Nothing like stacking the odds in one's favor when placing a bet.

Like I described, they could call the league I mentioned a 4.5+ league and Jason Jung could double bagel MEP in 35 minutes but what exactly would that prove? And who in their right mind would bet me $1000 that MEP would win?
 

Raul_SJ

G.O.A.T.
The only caveat is the indoor and environmentally controlled court, which MEP is unaccustomed to, vs an outdoor, environmentally uncontrolled court, which MEP is accustomed to and is more suited to his defensive style.
Surprised to hear Sean say that "indoor court excuse is BS..". Clearly if a guy is playing outdoors it will take some time to adjust to indoors. Think MEP said he had mostly adjusted to the court after the first set.
 
Surprised to hear Sean say that "indoor court excuse is BS..". Clearly if a guy is playing outdoors it will take some time to adjust to indoors. Think MEP said he had mostly adjusted to the court after the first set.
Although, "adjusted" isn't the same as "identical": slow courts favor his defensive style so while he may have adjusted to the faster court, he doesn't have the advantage that he would on a slower court.

If my opponent spent all match bemoaning the difference in setting, then I'd call that excuse-making. If he mentions it off-hand as part of an attempt at objective analysis, I would not call that excuse-making.
 

Raul_SJ

G.O.A.T.
Although, "adjusted" isn't the same as "identical": slow courts favor his defensive style so while he may have adjusted to the faster court, he doesn't have the advantage that he would on a slower court.
Does he have any advantage on the indoor courts? That skidding slice might work better on the faster indoor court.
 

Notorious_Junkballer

Professional
MEP is clearly in trouble on this faster indoor surface when his defensive shots land a bit short and the opponent is able to hit decent long topspin balls, they don't even have to be that hard, into the corners. He's having really hard time getting to these as he isn't, to be honest, that quick and he has zero split steps. On on slower court, however, he' s able to get a lot more of these back.

Another thing is that the majority of his lobs against Sean have "landed" way too short and Sean has gotten to smash alot. This is probably because he has less time to prepare.

One thing we haven't yet seen against Sean are MEP's great fh passing shots down the line. He's just gone for the lob. This is probably also due to the lack of time.
 

Raul_SJ

G.O.A.T.
Another thing is that the majority of his lobs against Sean have "landed" way too short and Sean has gotten to smash alot.
Sean has had a million smash opportunities. Missed some but think he has made most of them. But still needs to improve the overhead. MEP is in big trouble if opponent has a solid overhead.

OTOH, can't recall MEP hitting a single overhead.
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
Nothing like stacking the odds in one's favor when placing a bet.

Like I described, they could call the league I mentioned a 4.5+ league and Jason Jung could double bagel MEP in 35 minutes but what exactly would that prove? And who in their right mind would bet me $1000 that MEP would win?
The last match I watched our clubs 4.5 singles player play in he barely won in a 3rd set tiebreaker and was down match points so he isn’t the only strong player in this league.

Sean plays out of a different club but says the same thing about how strong the 4.5 guys are at his club. So this is not just one player we are talking about here, but carry on beings you know more about my clubs leagues than I do.

If MEP is 14-1 in a 4.5 league then he is really a 5.0 level guy so that should be no problem against the club players I’m talking about.
 
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tlm

G.O.A.T.
clearly seems that way. So he wanted to prove that @GSG is not 4.5 level player because he would get beaten, badly, by that fairly recent college player. Who, again, if I get his name correct:
  1. has not lost a match in that @tlm league in three years, playing #1 singles.
  2. has lost 1 (one) set in three years
  3. has won men's open tournament in 2018 in Chicagoland area by losing 5 (five) _games_ in five matches
  4. has played qualifying tournament in 2018 to get into _ATP Challenger level_ tournament in Winnetka, IL

I mean if that does not scream USTA 4.5 level I do not know what does....... :rolleyes:
Hey your boy is 14-1 at 4.5 in Atlanta the hot bed of tennis. If that does not scream USTA 5.0 level then what does
 
Does he have any advantage on the indoor courts? That skidding slice might work better on the faster indoor court.
That would be a compensating factor. It seems to be catching Sean but it seems the main reasons are that Sean is camping out inside the BL, sometimes by quite a bit, and maybe isn't getting low enough.
 
The last match I watched our clubs 4.5 singles player play in he barely won in a 3rd set tiebreaker and was down match points so he isn’t the only strong player in this league.

Sean plays out of a different club but says the same thing about how strong the 4.5 guys are at his club. So this is not just one player we are talking about here, but carry on beings you know more about my clubs leagues than I do.

If MEP is 14-1 in a 4.5 league then he is really a 5.0 level guy so that should be no problem against the club players I’m talking about.
in order to compare apples to apples, let's use UTR.
 

Raul_SJ

G.O.A.T.
Sean lost, got bageled in the third set. What a turn of events, great play by MEP.
Havent watched it yet. But bagel suggests he ran out of gas as he was constantly whining to the camera about being "exhausted"... In the second set. And even though there were not many long rallies. :rolleyes:

Quite annoying. Along with the loud cursing, " Just like every frickin video!". Yeah we get it, you watched the videos. So did we... Hope we dont have to see the whiny Sean again.
 
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Havent watched it yet. But bagel suggests he ran out of gas as he was constantly whining to the camera about being "exhausted"... In the second set. And even though there were not many long rallies. :rolleyes:

Quite annoying.
He was hyperventilating early in the first set. He did well to win the first being so out of breath.

But a bagel in the 3rd after a tough loss in the 2nd when one could have closed it out is not uncommon. It's a mental challenge to reset and MEP has shown over and over again that mental toughness is one of his great strengths.
 

TennisProdigy

Professional
But sure - It's really rough on GSG though to expect him to beat guys that have dissected his game and spent weeks studying it - bringing in players to replicate it - and who have been getting coaching.. Throw in the fast service.. Outside of like the top two guys on his channel I'd hope Ian could set up most of them for failure with all he effort that has gone into it.. i think ET deserves some credit for not going easy on Ben for drama FWIW..

As far as getting bumped up goes - USTA looks at scores not just wins losses. Thats why you can go 14-1 and not get bumped. Grinding out wins isn't the same as blowing people off the court.. If you blow someone away who is blowing other people away - you can get bumped.
Exactly, that’s how I got bumped up to 5.0 playing my second season ever at 4.5 in 2015.

My only loss came in a close 3 set contest when I was sick and my captain couldn’t find a sub. Then my other 8 matches I won easily in straight sets every time, with some of the people I straight setted having high 4.5 ratings themselves.

I essentially played a game very similar to MEP in terms of “weak serve,” consistent return, being difficult to attack, and a grinding baseline game that wears down our opponents. We’re both lefties too.

The key difference is that MEP plays a lot more slices and drop shots, while I relentlessly used heavy topspin corner to corner to deplete my opponents stamina.
 
Havent watched it yet. But bagel suggests he ran out of gas as he was constantly whining to the camera about being "exhausted"... In the second set. And even though there were not many long rallies. :rolleyes:
FWIW, I have this problem playing this junior: I'll be leaning against the fence sucking wind [good thing there's no 30 second timer]; imagine how much worse it would be if I had to say something coherent for the camera.

Quite annoying. Along with the loud cursing, " Just like every frickin video!". Yeah we get it, you watched the videos. So did we... Hope we dont have to see the whiny Sean again.
I haven't watched it yet but I think the feedback from both players is valuable: players could learn a lot about what works and what doesn't work against this style and about how to stay the course and the benefits that brings. For example, losing the first set in a completely foreign environment with the cameras rolling and a bunch of hype prior could unnerve many but MEP steadied the ship like a pro.
 
Exactly, that’s how I got bumped up to 5.0 playing my second season ever at 4.5 in 2015.

My only loss came in a close 3 set contest when I was sick and my captain couldn’t find a sub. Then my other 8 matches I won easily in straight sets every time, with some of the people I straight setted having high 4.5 ratings themselves.

I essentially played a game very similar to MEP in terms of “weak serve,” consistent return, being difficult to attack, and a grinding baseline game that wears down our opponents. We’re both lefties too.

The key difference is that MEP plays a lot more slices and drop shots, while I relentlessly used heavy topspin corner to corner to deplete my opponents stamina.
Have you ever faced a net-centric opponent [S&V, C&C, spend as little time on the BL as possible]?
 

FiddlerDog

Semi-Pro
All I know is Sean is beating MEP and I know that Sean would not have a chance in the club 4.5 league, that is why he is on a 4.0 team in that same league. So you can do your abc’s all day but it doesn’t matter.
Agreed, but here is MEP playing a very even match with a 4.5
This puts his level at 4.5
 

FiddlerDog

Semi-Pro
You can not go to a 3rd. You're dead in a 3rd.

The live mike is pure gold.

We're going to a 3rd....

This is truly an awesome match.
 

Raul_SJ

G.O.A.T.
This mellow Topher announcer seems to have the right mental attitude and he is the next MEP opponent. We do not expect to see him whining and screaming like Sean.
 
ET: "Hey everyone, here are some free donuts."

Whiner1: "These are cake donuts. I wanna raised donut."

Whiner2: "Cream-filled?? Yuck, I HATE cream-filled."

Whiner3: "These donuts are terrible. Why can't you make them like Donut Troll?"

Whiner4: "Where are the gluten-free, sugar-free, fat-free, GMO-free, chrysanthemum-infused, zero-gravity-produced Maple Bars?"

Whiner5: "I don't like donuts. Gimme a bagel. Toasted. With cream cheese. And I mean the full fat cream cheese, not that 'lite' garbage!"

Whiner6: "It's about time! I've been waiting for, like, 15 minutes! And these aren't hot! Why can't you bring them out continuously as I'm finishing the current one?"

Whiner7: "Top Donut Training and My Donut HQ have master bakers and they have better donuts. You're no master baker."

Whiner8: "Do you know what this will do to my glycemic index??"
 
The other analogy is Cam Williams over at Tennis Talk: he comments on match that he watches live on tennistv. I love his enthusiasm; he's got more sayings than Robby Krieger [he of the "reaction time of a mongoose on amphetamines" fame]. But he can't show it for copyright reasons [if he tried, the bots would shut him down in minutes]. But there are always doofi [plural of doofus] who complain bitterly "just show the match and stop talking".

Dude, if you want to watch the match, pay the $ to tennistv and stop complaining.
 

chetrbox

Rookie
ET: "Hey everyone, here are some free donuts."

Whiner1: "These are cake donuts. I wanna raised donut."

Whiner2: "Cream-filled?? Yuck, I HATE cream-filled."

Whiner3: "These donuts are terrible. Why can't you make them like Donut Troll?"

Whiner4: "Where are the gluten-free, sugar-free, fat-free, GMO-free, chrysanthemum-infused, zero-gravity-produced Maple Bars?"

Whiner5: "I don't like donuts. Gimme a bagel. Toasted. With cream cheese. And I mean the full fat cream cheese, not that 'lite' garbage!"

Whiner6: "It's about time! I've been waiting for, like, 15 minutes! And these aren't hot! Why can't you bring them out continuously as I'm finishing the current one?"

Whiner7: "Top Donut Training and My Donut HQ have master bakers and they have better donuts. You're no master baker."

Whiner8: "Do you know what this will do to my glycemic index??"
Whiners improve the world we live in. They carry the rest of us 'accept the world as it is' people to a better place.
 

FiddlerDog

Semi-Pro
As a junior who reached NCAA Nationals, Ian deeply knows the dynamics of playing a frustrating MEP.
He was waiting for Sean to racket smash in the 3rd. It was tense to watch such a tightly strung player, knowing he might blow up.

All right trolls, give it to me. I am not a good tennis player.

Sean's post match tirade was epic.
We've all been there. Go Sean!

I feel that Sean is way too hard on himself. He really let up on his speed in the 3rd set.
Otherwise, I am not sure his deteriorating mental condition affected his strokes that much.

This match is already a classic.
 

Devil_dog

Hall of Fame
I'm willing to bet everyone here has played their own MEP/GSG/Ben at their local club or courts. I have several guys here that are like Ben and it is a mental battle to try and compete with these guys. I may have better looking strokes or game but guys like Ben are superior in the mental game. They fight. They grind it out. They rarely give up. And like Topher said about having to be mentally focused the entire match is as exhausting or more so than physically draining. I know I can get a set off the guys I play but the thought of taking another set or the match is comparable to climbing Mt. Everest and these guys know it and thus get wins. Like the old saying, "You may win the battle but you won't win the war." Hats off to Ben and Sean for playing.
 

FiddlerDog

Semi-Pro
I can say unequivocally that the indoor court surface was by far the biggest challenge for me in the ET matches. The travel, 4 matches in 3 days, the lighting and wearing a mic belt during matches didn't even come close to that. The behavior of the ball is so much different indoors compared to outside, and >99% of the tennis I've played in the last six years has been outdoors.
How does the indoor hard play differently than outdoor hard?
Loved Match #1. Great comments.

OTOH, can't recall MEP hitting a single overhead.
He didn't need to.

I'm willing to bet everyone here has played their own MEP/GSG/Ben at their local club or courts.
That is exactly why MEP went viral. The struggle is real.
These guys know how to win tennis matches. True players.
3rd set bagel is a case study of MEP capitulation
 
How does the indoor hard play differently than outdoor hard?
Loved Match #1. Great comments.



He didn't need to.



That is exactly why MEP went viral. The struggle is real.
These guys know how to win tennis matches. True players.
3rd set bagel is a case study of MEP capitulation
This probably has already been covered, but I confess I haven't read every post on this thread: what's your official position with ET?
 
Whiners improve the world we live in. They carry the rest of us 'accept the world as it is' people to a better place.
Few people like whiners, especially when giving out stuff for free. I'm not sure I'd have Ian's patience dealing with them.

Constructive criticism at least carries the possibility of improvement [ie "I notice several things about your FH which I think we can improve."]. Whining is much less likely to succeed [ie "Dang, your FH sucks!"]. Unless, of course, the goal of whining is not to improve but to tear down.

I guess ET can take it in a good way: the fact that the whiners bother leaving comments mean they're still engaged. At the very least, it means views which translates into revenue. Although I doubt the whiners make up a significant part of the viewership.
 

Devil_dog

Hall of Fame
Besides the speed, a big factor is environmental: indoor courts are climated-controlled. You don't have to worry about heat, humidity, wind, sun, shifting clouds, fog, bees, leaves, dirt, etc. For someone who only plays indoors, that's a huge transition.
Agreed. I play 99.9-percent outdoors but a few times I've had the opportunity to play on an indoor court. First thing that throws me off is looking up at the ceiling. Second is the sound is different too. It can be noisy as hell when multiple courts are in use. I enjoyed it though because there was a thunderstorm outside yet I was able to play ball.
 

jdawgg

Rookie
Sean and TLM are in the wrong here with their comments regarding indoor vs outdoor court surfaces. Coming from a former D3 #1 singles and NTRP 5.0, I'd say it makes a pretty big difference.

There's two big ways it makes a difference:

1) The first difference is the getting used to the surface difference. If you haven't played indoors in over a year it can take a few sessions to get up to speed. The lighting is a little bit of a factor but the court speed is the biggest. Flat shots can skid on surfaces that are fast enough. Having played exclusively outdoors during covid and only just a few days ago playing indoors, my buddy who I regularly beat handily lit me up in a set because he hits flatter than I do and his serve is more of a weapon. That means I had a more difficult time adjusting to his shots because they're more forcing than mine thereby screwing up my timing.

2) That brings me to point #2. The gamestyle difference. As more of a grinder myself with heavy topspin groundstrokes, but without a big serve, I have found my biggest and best wins have come from outdoor matches. I've also done very well indoors but theres a clear advantage to certain styles on indoor vs outdoor. MEP looks to be someone who greatly benefits from hot, slow outdoor conditions. His natural gamestyle is a terrible match for fast indoor courts.

Having spent way too much time watching, reading and observing all this, I believe Ben/GSG to be a mid 4.5 player. Others have posted (but I have not seen) that he lost in 3 sets against Topher. Sansait on his channel has said that Topher is around a mid 4.5 and a ringer at 4.0 in Sansait's match against Topher.

Sean sounds like he could be a high 4.0 - low 4.5 player. It would be interesting to see @schmke estimate the dynamic rating score for Ben with his scoreline against Sean based on a high 4.0 dynamic rating. I'm guessing low 4.5 but could be mid 4.5 scoreline.
 
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chetrbox

Rookie
Few people like whiners, especially when giving out stuff for free. I'm not sure I'd have Ian's patience dealing with them.

Constructive criticism at least carries the possibility of improvement [ie "I notice several things about your FH which I think we can improve."]. Whining is much less likely to succeed [ie "Dang, your FH sucks!"]. Unless, of course, the goal of whining is not to improve but to tear down.

I guess ET can take it in a good way: the fact that the whiners bother leaving comments mean they're still engaged. At the very least, it means views which translates into revenue. Although I doubt the whiners make up a significant part of the viewership.
Thank you for whining about the whiners. I hope you succeed in reducing the amount of whining.
 

celito

Semi-Pro
Havent watched it yet. But bagel suggests he ran out of gas as he was constantly whining to the camera about being "exhausted"... In the second set. And even though there were not many long rallies. :rolleyes:

Quite annoying. Along with the loud cursing, " Just like every frickin video!". Yeah we get it, you watched the videos. So did we... Hope we dont have to see the whiny Sean again.
The guy was self defeating himself when he was up and playing pretty well. It was obvious this was going to happen in the 3rd set.
 

heninfan99

Talk Tennis Guru
Interesting thread and an awesome match.

TLM is correct. An average 4.5 should double breadstick an average 4.0, Ian has also stated this in one of his podcasts or videos. However none of that applies here becuase GSGs weapons are strategy & endurance and these guys have been dissecting his game for months to the finest detail. That is the reason it was close. They got the strategy down pretty well but forgot the endurance.

Topher has the endurance and got the desired result.
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
Sean and TLM are in the wrong here with their comments regarding indoor vs outdoor court surfaces. Coming from a former D3 #1 singles and NTRP 5.0, I'd say it makes a pretty big difference.

There's two big ways it makes a difference:

1) The first difference is the getting used to the surface difference. If you haven't played indoors in over a year it can take a few sessions to get up to speed. The lighting is a little bit of a factor but the court speed is the biggest. Flat shots can skid on surfaces that are fast enough. Having played exclusively outdoors during covid and only just a few days ago playing indoors, my buddy who I regularly beat handily lit me up in a set because he hits flatter than I do and his serve is more of a weapon. That means I had a more difficult time adjusting to his shots because they're more forcing than mine thereby screwing up my timing.

2) That brings me to point #2. The gamestyle difference. As more of a grinder myself with heavy topspin groundstrokes, but without a big serve, I have found my biggest and best wins have come from outdoor matches. I've also done very well indoors but theres a clear advantage to certain styles on indoor vs outdoor. MEP looks to be someone who greatly benefits from hot, slow outdoor conditions. His natural gamestyle is a terrible match for fast indoor courts.

Having spent way too much time watching, reading and observing all this, I believe Ben/GSG to be a mid 4.5 player. Others have posted (but I have not seen) that he lost in 3 sets against Topher. Sansait on his channel has said that Topher is around a mid 4.5 and a ringer at 4.0 in Sansait's match against Topher.

Sean sounds like he could be a high 4.0 - low 4.5 player. It would be interesting to see @schmke estimate the dynamic rating score for Ben with his scoreline against Sean based on a high 4.0 dynamic rating. I'm guessing low 4.5 but could be mid 4.5 scoreline.
I said that playing indoors was more of an advantage for the more attacking player which in this case is Sean. I’m just not sure it made a huge difference because Sean did not attack very well.
I’ve found it much easier to play indoors but I also agree that for a grinding style it is better outdoors. I know I do better outside against guys with big serves and attacking style players.
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
Lost 8 out of the next 9 games. So much for beating.
At the time of that post Sean was leading, but he ran out of gas and blew it at the end of the 2nd set, but was very close to winning in two. He was close to pulling it out and he is a 4.0 level player.
 

AnyPUG

Professional
Great to see a winning strategy here :)
Whining about whiners is a net positive via the thoery of double negatives!

ET: "Hey everyone, here are some free donuts."

Whiner1: "These are cake donuts. I wanna raised donut."

Whiner2: "Cream-filled?? Yuck, I HATE cream-filled."

Whiner3: "These donuts are terrible. Why can't you make them like Donut Troll?"

Whiner4: "Where are the gluten-free, sugar-free, fat-free, GMO-free, chrysanthemum-infused, zero-gravity-produced Maple Bars?"

Whiner5: "I don't like donuts. Gimme a bagel. Toasted. With cream cheese. And I mean the full fat cream cheese, not that 'lite' garbage!"

Whiner6: "It's about time! I've been waiting for, like, 15 minutes! And these aren't hot! Why can't you bring them out continuously as I'm finishing the current one?"

Whiner7: "Top Donut Training and My Donut HQ have master bakers and they have better donuts. You're no master baker."

Whiner8: "Do you know what this will do to my glycemic index??"
 
At the time of that post Sean was leading, but he ran out of gas and blew it at the end of the 2nd set, but was very close to winning in two. He was close to pulling it out and he is a 4.0 level player.
Sean acquitted himself well, the 3rd set bagel notwithstanding: he successfully built points rather than just going for serve+1, he had a clear idea of what he had to do [and what not to do], he recognized what was going wrong in real-time, etc. He was too hard on himself, IMO.

I can see myself having a 3rd set slump if I had won the 1st and lose a close 2nd. You have to be very mentally tough to avoid that.
 

Wander

Hall of Fame
At the time of that post Sean was leading, but he ran out of gas and blew it at the end of the 2nd set, but was very close to winning in two. He was close to pulling it out and he is a 4.0 level player.
Uh huh.
 
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