Christopher Callis & John Russell enjoyed a successful debut together by capturing the Tavern Club Open title in Cleveland, Ohio, April 20-22. The Tavern Club Open was the first SDA event to trial a new 11-point scoring system, to great success.
Both experienced veterans of the SDA tour, Callis & Russell opened their event with a decisive 3-0 win over Sergio Martin & Thijs Van der Pluijm, before meeting Christopher Sachvie & Hameed Ahmed in the semifinals. A strong start found Callis & Russell with a 2-0 lead in the semis, but they were met with resistance from a determined Sachvie & Ahmed who were unwilling to give up the third. Despite a tight scoreline in the fourth, however, top seeds Callis & Russell proved too strong and secured their place in the final with a 11-5, 114, 6-11, 11-8 victory.
In the bottom half of the draw, first-round upsets pushed unseeded teams Jeff Osborne & Matt Jenson and Justin Todd & Gavin Maxwell through to the quarterfinals, where they faced off against four-seeds Tor Christoffersen & Chris Walker and two-seeds Matt Henderson & Adam Bews, respectively. Osborne & Jenson continued their winning streak, taking down Christoffersen & Walker in four games, while Todd & Maxwell were stopped short by Bews & Henderson, who claimed their place in the semifinal with a four-game win. Impressive play from both teams found them evenly matched after the first two games, but Bews & Henderson pulled ahead, taking the match 11-6, 6-11, 11-7, 11-9, to set up the final as seeded.
Callis & Russell hit the ground running in the Saturday evening final, earning an early two-game lead before Bews & Henderson mounted a comeback, evening out the score 2-2. Bews & Henderson, however, were unable to carry that momentum through to the fifth, as Callis & Russell fought back to clinch their first title together 11-3, 11-7, 8-11, 2-11, 11-8.