By J. Fred Sidhu, special to USTA.com
LA JOLLA, Calif.
– No doubles team has successfully defended its title at the Pacific Coast Men’s Doubles Championships since 1991, when Jared Palmer and Jonathan Stark of Stanford accomplished the feat.
This weekend, the Stanford doubles team of Bradley Klahn and Ryan Thacher is attempting to become the first team in over 20 years to win back-to-back championships.
On a cool, sunny day at the La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club, the defending champions, who received a first-round bye, began their title defense on an impressive note, as they swept past Villanova’s Ryan Peyton and Michael Rosengren, 6-0, 6-0, in a second-round match.
Later in the afternoon, Klahn and Thacher defeated Thorsten Bertsch and Derek Siddiqui of San Diego State University, 6-2, 6-3, to advance to the fourth round.
"Ryan and I are confident. We’ve been doing well. We have to take it one match at a time and not get too far ahead of ourselves. We still have a ways to go," said Klahn, who began playing tennis again last month after a five-month absence due to a herniated disc in his back.
"There are obviously a lot of great teams here. It’s difficult to win any tournament, let alone win two years in a row," said Klahn. "We’re going to have to keep playing solid and playing good doubles like we’ve been playing and just enjoy the competition."
Klahn and Thacher, who are seeded No. 1, will face eighth-seeded Peter Lucassen and Jaak Poldma of the University of Southern California in a fourth-round match scheduled for 10 a.m. (PT) on Saturday.
Tennis legend Pancho Segura, who teamed with Frank Parker to win the Pacific Coast Men’s Doubles Championships in 1947, paid a visit to the La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club on Friday.
While watching Klahn and Thacher win their third-round match, the 90-year-old Segura, a resident of Carlsbad, Calif., spoke about the fond memories he had when he won the prestigious title in La Jolla years ago.
"We were the underdog. I played out of my mind. Frank Parker was so steady. We beat Ted Schroeder and Jack Kramer. It was the highlight of my tennis career," said Segura, a member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame and a three-time NCAA singles champion at the University of Miami.
When asked what he thought about the Pacific Coast Men’s Doubles Championships, which has been played at the La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club since 1942, Segura said, "I think it’s a fantastic tournament. You get to see players in their developing stages, and it’s a great opportunity for them to improve."
Spectator admission to the 123rd Annual Pacific Coast Men’s Doubles Tennis Championships is free and open to the public. On-site parking is available for a nominal fee. The tournament continues through Sunday.
For the full tournament draw, go to:
Named "Club of the Year" for 2011 by the San Diego District Tennis Association and one of the "Top 50 Tennis Resorts in the World" by Tennis Resorts Online, the La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club's reputation as a top tennis destination started when it attracted its first major tournament – the Pacific Coast Men's Doubles Championship in 1942.
The Annual Pacific Coast Men’s Doubles Championship is one of the five oldest tennis events in the world and the second oldest tennis event in the United States. First held in 1890 at The Hotel Del Monte in Monterey, Calif., the event was created to promote the sale of real estate on the Monterey peninsula. The original concept pitted the best players from the East vs. those from the West. This coast-to-coast rivalry was the inspiration for the Davis Cup. Past winners of the Pacific Coast Men’s Doubles Championship include Jack Kramer, Ted Schroeder, Bobby Riggs, Pancho Segura, Don Budge, Tony Trabert, Stan Smith, Bob Lutz, Arthur Ashe, Dennis Ralston, John McEnroe and many other world-class champions.
For more information, please visit www.LJBTC.com
. The La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club will also be hosting the USTA National Hard Court Championships for Women’s 50-90 age groups and the club’s 40th Annual Spring Senior Championships for Men’s 60-85 age groups on Monday, May 14, through Sunday, May 20.