Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Pat and Abu Swing a Big Comeback

While Tom and I were playing against Tim and Alpha in the sunny side of the courts, I saw that Pat/Abu/Sam were having a heck of a time, down 2 to 12 against Nick and Maury.  Then a huge point swing as Abu &  Pat made 5 points in a round, bringing them to a more tenable position of 7 to 12.  A few more good rounds and they took the win 13/12.  So, you see, even games where you think you may have lost are never written in stone until the 13th boule is tallied.  You should have heard the shouting, and words of encouragement from Abu and Pat as they focused on taking back the game.  Very exciting.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Sometimes it is best not to Point your Boule too Close

Two doublettes today at lunch time.  Pat and Abu had a close victory in the shady portion of Cadillac Square Park, while Alpha and I took two wins in the Sun.  Deric had a particularly good pair of shots today which resulted in four points that round. 

I would like to bring up a "strategy" in pointing that may result in your opponent using their shooting boules for pointing.  When you're confronted with an opposing team that has a strong shooter, you can trick them into expending more boules trying to win the point by not placing your boule obscenely close that it is a mandatory shot. 

By placing your boule about a foot and a half away from the cochonnet, you leave just enough hope in the opposition that they'll try to point rather than shoot - and in so doing, they'll use up more boules trying to win back the point.  They might in fact get the point, but I've seen plenty of times a bunch of boules used to get the point, and sometimes it still not won.  When the opposition has used up 3 boules - their shooter is forced into pointing (more for defense than anything) and so you've tricked them into sacrificing their shooter for the hope of beating that 1.5 footer.

Of course it all really depends upon how you size up the other team's players.  If their pointers can make easily to within 4 inches of the cochonnet, and you lack a shooter - you might want to shy away from this method.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Pat Pulls Two Wins and Maintains His Lead

The first game was a total rout, with our pointing (Jeff/Nick/Alpha/Abu) just beaten to heck.  Pat floated himself on the top of the averages and I started descending.  Tim took his 13/4 win and ran back to his office while we re-mixed (Pat/Fred/Nick vs. Jeff/Abu/Alpha) and played the second game.  This one turned out a bit more interesting, as we tailed 2 to 12 points.  It looked grim.  But then we flipped the switch and was getting a point each round (for eight rounds) sitting on 11 to 12!  Anyone's game at this venture and a great lesson to those of us who think all is lost when the spread is wide.   Though lucky streaks don't last forever, and Nick was able to smash his boule in for the thirteenth point.  A really fun game.  Pat was looking a tad nervous when his team was sitting on 12 points for 8 rounds.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Averages Tighten as Big Game Elevates Players in the Standings

Today's 13/2 win by newly returned Mark W., along with Tim and Tom really transformed the averages.  Pat, who until recently held a 2.11 average (a nice lead) - fell after a few unfortunate games, to a very attainable 1.97 

With Jeff, Nick, Fred, Tim and Deric not very far away - it could be anyone for the top rank. 

Pat has an interesting situation if he wants to keep his lead.  He needs to win games, but also, not allow his close competition to be on his winning team.  Their averages with fewer games would boost their scores above Pat's average.   That means he has to compete against those aforementioned players, and win with players of slightly lower averages. 

Of course, it's a no brainer if Mark W. maintains his high average, to rocket him to the top - but he still has 8 more games to go.

Monday, May 21, 2012

The Weekend Dampened Some of Our Playing

Eight players at once - next time we will break into doublettes
 My shooting was completely off - too relaxingof a weekend no doubt.  Alpha too wasn't doing his usual high energy moves.  I expect by tomorrow, we'll all be back to our normal bouleing selves.

Alpha was partying too much last night - he was barely awake

Friday, May 18, 2012

Lots of New Players for Petanque in Detroit

(from left) Andre, Brian, Mark B., Michael, Raleigh, and Anthony
 This week was glorious for weather, and for petanque playing.  We had some visitors, old and new faces. Hitesh came by before his meeting to throw the boule for a game.  He was just as good as when he last played.  We also had a visit from Chris who runs a club in Kalamazoo (LINK to his club page).  I love it when new players come to visit because other than playing in a multi-state tournament, our players don't get many opportunities to try out other player's styles/techniques.  We also had a strong visit from CTI Property Services, with Mark B., Michael, Raleigh, Anthony and Brian G. trying the game out.  Brian has played for a while, so we're hopeful he'll be able to return to the club more often.  Andre, friends with Alpha also joined us, and it made for a very evenly matched competitive game, with the points see-sawing each round, until finally, Team-Michael/Raleigh/Anthony closed at 13 points.  Still though, there was very good pointing rolls, a few shots, and well considered strategic moves.

Pat show (Chris from Kalamazoo) the Detroit-style of Shooting

Andre, his first time playing, was pointing in like a pro

The rankings swell with new players.  Just for you new people, we have two tiers for averages, those that play 10+ games and those that play less than 10 games - to maintain more realistic averages

Chris (who plays over in Kalamazoo) shows us his practiced throw

Hitesh stopped by to play a game before a meeting

The points awarded for winning and losing games.  Even if you're losing a game, you're interested in keeping your score as high as possible so as to increase your points.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Chewbacca shows Alpha the proper posture for shooting
 Today we had nine players in one game.  A tad too many boules on the field [20!!] (which calls for an adjustment to the strategy).  The way I played it, is that I figured the ideal situation was to get a close boule early, and then have the front position walled up with so many boules that the opposition could never shoot enough away to re-gain the point.  I led with my strongest pointer, Tom, then Sam & Alpha followed up with Nick to shoot away anything that got close.  By the time we were depleted of boules, our position was well defended. 

The averages are getting quite close my friends...

Un-orthodox nine players today, but we'll break up into two (or more) games from now on

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Jeff Ascending the Ranks

It must have been the free ice cream distributed at Campus Martius Park today as my team cast excellent points and shots all around.  Nick was blasting away with a near perfect shooting record, while Sam and I laid in some nice points that just couldn't be removed.  The second game mixed the players, and together with Alpha, we took a win (my second for the day). 

Hint: When there is shade, stand in it!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

The Detroit Petanque Club Doesn't Pay ANY Tickets!

We're not paying any F%$King tickets!
 For the whole story, ask one of the participants (and witnesses) that day.  It was piss-in-pants funny!  In other news, I lost (again) but the game was plenty of fun.  When the restof our crew shows up, we'll be able to run two games at once with winner playing winners, etc... 

Nick's shooting has been 100% - the best in the club!  We should do a shooting match one session.

Back from Mexico, and witness to the powerhouse of Tom's pointing and Nick's Shooting

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Plenty of Petanque with Marvelous Weather

We had three games for Tuesday - mixing the teams with each game.  I see that Pat is back from his vacation, so we'll perhaps see more of the Honigman boys on the field. 

After a good rain, the court surface will play differently than usual, and you should make sure to adjust for what appears to be smooth ground but a bit softer than typical.  It is a good idea for teams playing "second" to watch their opponent's boule, see how it hits the surface and how far along it rolls.  This is when not leading with the cochonnet throw has its advantage.

Friday, May 04, 2012

Nick Shooting Better than Pat!

With Pat taking in the sunshine of Mexico, there's a new shooter in town.  Nick has been hitting almost every shot he's thrown, and today's games reflect that prowess.  Despite some really excellent pointing saves from Alpha, we just couldn't keep a boule close without Nick striking it away.  It's nice to see the players pick up new skills, and it is going to make the future games even more of a challenge.

Fox Playing Petanque

In Tolouse, France, a man noticed that all of his petaque boules which he left on his private petanque court were missing.  Thinking it was neighborhood kids, he set up a nightvision camera.  What he caught on video was a different type of culprit ...  a FOX!  The fox was taking each boule in his mouth and bringing it to his underground den!

Thursday, May 03, 2012

Visitation from the Bouleians from Pluto

The Bouleians just watched, but I expect they'd like to eventually play

Christian is relatively new to the game, but he was placing some excellent points

Tom has been on a winning streak - no doubt encouraged by the quiet