Preview to the Selkirk Labs Showdown
An August filled with entertaining PPA action serves up back-to-back invitational events in just the first two weeks! After kicking off the second half of the season with a unique pool play format, the PPA will be televised on national TV for the first time ever during the second week of August.
Following this, the PPA Tour heads to Brigham City, Utah, in the third week of August to host the legendary Tournament of Champions. But more on that later. Let’s take a deeper dive into the first event of the month, the Selkirk Labs Showdown Presented by Invited: a made-for-TV doubles events that will feature the most iconic PPA players and introduce fans to a brand-new and totally unique PPA viewing experience.
The event brings 24 of the best PPA players together and divides them into three pools, but there’s a catch: each pool is composed of competitors who don’t normally play doubles together. With all the traditional doubles pairings out of the picture, what should fans expect in Los Angeles?
Pickle-lovers should expect the unexpected and be prepared for shocking results across the board. Players begin the competition by playing round robin men’s, women’s and mixed doubles matches against others in their pool – 7 matches in total. Each match is composed of one game to 15, using regular scoring, but win by one.
Players’ win-loss ratio during pool play will determine which partner they earn for themselves. At the end of the day on Friday, after tallying the count, the #1 player in men’s and women’s doubles will be paired up with the #2 player, the #3 with the #4, and so on. For mixed, the #1 male player pairs with the #1 female player and so on. These pairings still remain combined to each pool, however, and are not measured overall. This means players will still end up paired with an unusual partner.
All 24 players proceed to the next round of play. Once the pairings have been made, all teams are placed in a traditional bracket format on Saturday and allowed to play out their draws in men’s, women’s, and mixed divisions all the way up to the gold medal matches. The finals will take place on Sunday on Tennis Channel.
Which players could take advantage of these unconventional circumstances?
Jessie Irvine is a dark horse who shouldn’t be overlooked. Irvine has delivered strong results with several different partners in doubles and mixed doubles in 2022. She’ll also be extra motivated playing in her hometown of Los Angeles. Ben Johns is also a player with a dominant record against competitors in his pool, so he could enter the bracket format with momentum on his side.
To add yet another interesting twist to the format, invitations were extended to a few players who are less familiar faces on the PPA Tour: Cierra Gayton-Leach, KaSandra Gehrke, Ryan Sherry, Jeff Warnick, Federico Staksrud, and Ben Newell. These players will get the chance to be paired with the world’s best stars – could this propel a new champion to the finish?
Tune in to check out all the amazing competitors set to play live on PPA TV and Tennis Channel from Friday, August 5 to Sunday, August 7 during the first inaugural Selkirk Labs Showdown Presented by Invited!