World No. 3’s Manek Mathur & Yvain Badan earned their third SDA title of the season this weekend, dropping just one game on their way to a maiden Baltimore Cup at Baltimore Country Club in Maryland.
The Trinity grads entered the tournament seeded second with the draw predicting a fourth final this season against top seeds Damien Mudge & Viktor Berg, who were fresh off their victory at the David C. Johnson, Jr. Memorial.
The Johnson champions were stopped in their tracks during their opening quarterfinal when Berg picked up an injury, forcing the title favorites to retire against Matt Jenson & Hamed Anvari.
World champions John Russell & Clive Leach filled the void in the top half of the draw with two dominant three-game victories over qualifiers Peter Kelly & Dylan Patterson in the quarters and Jenson & Anvari in the semis.
Mathur & Badan also enjoyed a three-game quarterfinal victory over fellow Bantam Jonny Smith & Greg Park.
The two seeds then met Johnson finalists Mike Ferreira & Chris Callis in the semis. Ferreira, another Trinity alum, and Princeton grad Callis pushed the two seeds, taking their only game lost in the third, but fell short losing in four 15-11, 15-11, 9-15, 15-13.
Mathur & Badan continued their momentum in the final, winning their first Baltimore Cup title in the tournament’s fourth year in a close three games 15-13, 15-11, 15-11 lasting ninety minutes.
All three previous editions of the Baltimore Cup had been won by Mudge & Ben Gould. Mathur & Badan’s third title of the season is also their third maiden tournament title, adding to their first Putnam Pro-Am and North American Open titles since January.
“Baltimore is a great place where over the years, we have formed many many friendships,” Badan said. “We are very attached to the people of that city. So to share that win with our friends is a great feeling.
“We would like to thank everyone in Baltimore who make the event possible, and Jordan Greenberg, the SDA site rep who brought a lot of enthusiasm during this event!”