HOMAGE TO SPRING – APRIL 30

Don McPherson came dressed for play on Tartan Day, April 6, an annual Scottish holiday in North America.
Don McPherson came dressed for play on Tartan Day, April 6, an annual Scottish holiday in North America.

HOMAGE TO SPRING – APRIL 30
The first tournament of the year, Le Printemps: Homage to Spring, will kick off with registration on Saturday, April 30, at 9:30 a.m. at the Pétanque Courts (mêlée format: randomly assigned teams).

Club member Jean-michel Poulnot is the tournament director who will handle registration and randomization of teams. Play begins at 9:45 a.m. Winning teams will be announced at the conclusion.

A Potluck Lunch, to which all club members are invited whether playing or not, as well as their spouses/partners/companions, will begin at approximately 12 noon. Please bring your own beverage, chairs, and a lunch dish to share. Cups, plates, and utensils will be provided.

PLAYING TIP: WHEN TO SHOOT
Most casual players point far more often than they shoot, and most feel more confident pointing than shooting. Missing a shot is dramatic, so it is not uncommon to feel worse about missing a shot than failing to win a point. But in fact, failing to win a point is no “better” than missing a shot. In addition, failing to shoot is a missed opportunity to practice and improve under game conditions.

Alex Stone Sweet of La Boule New Yorkaise Club urges this calculation: “How hard is the point compared to shooting away our opponent’s boule?” If a boule is placed so well that it will likely have to be shot at some point, it’s better to shoot it than wait until later. A point attempt not only may fail but also may block the possibility of a later shot.

“Pointing too much is almost always fatal” in Sweet’s view. Every “miracle” point made can still be shot out by the opponents, scoring perhaps multiple points on their remaining boules. Even if a shot misses, the cochonnet might move, making the carefully played point worthless. “If you point on a boule that should be shot, very bad things can happen,”
Sweet observes.

WEDNESDAY & SATURDAY CLUB PLAY
The Club encourages all Oakmonters who may be interested in playing or learning to play pétanque (pay-tonk) to come to the courts between Berger and the OVA offices at 9:45 a.m. on the Club play days of Wednesday and Saturday. The Club has boules to lend while you’re learning, and you’ll be playing right away. Anyone, regardless of experience, is welcome to enjoy the challenge and camaraderie of a simple game that is inexpensive, fun to play, learned quickly, and endlessly fascinating in its deeper levels of execution and strategy. No dues are required – just sign up to be on the Club roster. Club play days are casual friendly games with teams randomly assigned. The courts also are reserved 10 a.m. – noon for Club player-arranged pickup games on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday.

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