Unmissable matches to (Re) Watch from the 2022 Acrytech Atlanta Open!

Acrytech Atlanta Open Men’s Doubles Final

A rivalry was born during the first Major of the 2022 season and one of the biggest PPA tournaments of the year. Riley Newman and Matt Wright came into the Acrytech Atlanta Open as a top doubles team, but most analysts expected yet another victory by the dominant duo of Ben/Collin Johns – particularly since Johns/Johns were coming off four consecutive defeats of the Newman/Wright partnership. It was a match punctuated by comebacks from behind, with Team Johns starting at an 8-3 deficit in the first game and Newman/Wright coming back after falling down 8-4 in the second game. Johns and Johns had game points in the first two games (which were the closest ones of the match), but ultimately both games went to Newman and Wright. Although most teams would throw in the towel after losing two nip-and-tuck games in a row, the Johns brothers went on a run instead. They immediately raced ahead to a 5-0 lead in the third game and carried that momentum all the way to the final game – but not without going down to an unthinkable 0-9 deficit in game four. Newman/Wright managed to raise their game at just the right time, but Ben and Collin went out swinging. The match spans almost two hours and is hailed as one of the best finals of the 2022 season.

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Acrytech Atlanta Open Men’s Singles Final

Federico Staksrud and Rafa Hewett sent shockwaves through the pickleball world by reaching the final of the Acrytech Atlanta Open against all odds and taking down a number of the world’s best players on their way there. Staksrud seemed to have this match wrapped up after taking the first two games, but Hewett’s fighting spirit kept him alive. The end of the fourth game was exhilarating to watch, with Staksrud missing a put-away volley on match point and Hewett following this up with a series of incredible points. Hewett carried that momentum into the final game, before racing to a 6-1 lead. From that point forward, the match became a battle of nerves, with both athletes giving their all, fighting through every exchange, and letting their emotions flow. Finally, the victor of the day turned the tables and mounted a final comeback to win the title and his first PPA gold medal.

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Acrytech Atlanta Women’s Doubles Final

2022 was an incredible season of pickleball competition, but three of the five most watch-worthy matches of the year came at the same tournament on the same day! The first four games of this classic were as close as it gets. The crucial turning point of the match came in the third game, which began 5-0 in favor of Anna Leigh and Leigh Waters. Lucy Kovalova responded to the pressure by turning into an unbeatable machine together and staging a remarkable comeback. Rather than throwing in the towel, the Waters rose to the occasion, with Anna Leigh leading them on a ferocious run in the fourth game. Team Waters found themselves up 8-2 and managed to hold off Kovalova/Smith to push this one to a decider. Although the final game was one-sided, the first four games of this championship match made it more than enough to make this list.

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