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Chris Haworth Breaks Through on the PPA Tour While Dylan Frazier Rises to the Top in San Clemente

by Erik Tice on

This weekend the PPA Tour took over San Clemente for the Orange County Cup, and man it didn't disappoint.

We had upsets galore, crazy points, a wild crowd, and of course, an Anna Leigh Waters triple crown.

The Rancho San Clemente Life Time was packed all weekend long with close to 15,000 fans in attendance Saturday and Sunday.

Let’s get into it.

Top Storylines and Takeaways

Dylan Frazier is now the No. 1 ranked men’s doubles player on the PPA Tour

Dylan Frazier and JW Johnson have won four out of five men’s doubles championships in the last six weeks. The only time they didn’t win was two weeks ago in Sacramento, where they won a silver medal.

Due to some scheduling conflicts and missing some events together, Dylan has slightly more PPA Points than his partner, JW Johnson. Check out the PPA Tour player rankings to see all the points totals this year.

Dylan and JW Johnson are now tied with Ben and Collin Johns with five gold medals in men’s doubles this year. Frazier and Johnson have been on a heater while it has been over two months since Ben and Collin Johns have won a tournament. 

Although they won the tournament, Ben and Anna Leigh almost lost their mixed doubles semifinal match 

Ben and Anna Leigh have only lost once this year, but they cut it close this weekend. Ben did not have his best stuff all weekend and sometimes looked disinterested. But Anna Leigh picked him up in the semis against Jorja and JW Johnson.

The PPA Tour put together a great highlight reel of the epic match on their IG account.

Jorja Johnson played the best I have seen her play through 90 percent of the match. She was regularly winning hands battles across the net from Ben Johns.  Ben and Anna Leigh won the first game fairly easily, 11-3. The Johnsons seemed undeterred and came roaring back in the second game, winning 11-5. 

In the third game, Jorja and JW got to 6-2 and had momentum going at the side switch. They ran off four more points going up 10-4, with match point on their side. It looked like it was over for Anna Leigh and Ben, but Ben got a backhand flick winner.

Anna Leigh took over from there, speeding anything and everything up at JW Johnson when she could. Both JW and Jorja got tight when they were serving and missed some routine third shots. Eventually, the top mixed doubles team was able to fight off five match points and came back to win, 12-10, in a thriller.

Ben and Anna Leigh once again won the gold over Catherine Parenteau and Christian Alshon in the finals.

Chris Haworth beats the No. 1 and No. 2 seeds to win his first ever PPA Tour gold medal

Haworth is officially here to stay. The Babolat signed player just won silver in Sacramento and followed it up with a gold in San Clemente.

The road to victory is never easy on the PPA Tour, especially in men’s singles. As the No. 11 seed, here was his path:

  • No. 17 - Yates Johnson - 11-3, 11-8
  • No. 5 - Dylan Frazier - 11-7, 11-2
  • No. 51 - Grayson Goldin - 12-10, 11-4
  • No. 2 - Ben Johns - 11-4, 3-11, 11-7
  • No. 1 - Federico Staksrud - 9-11, 11-5, 11-7

Haworth was the No. 3 men’s singles player in our most recent power rankings and is here to stay. He has one of the best two-handed backhand passing shots in all of pickleball and his court coverage at the net is elite.

Babolat Signs First Pickleball Athlete
French company Babolat announced Thursday on their Instagram account that professional pickleball player Chris Haworth has signed on as their first-ever pickleball athlete.

Hayden Patriquin has beaten the Johns Brothers in two straight events

In Sacramento, he did it on the way to winning his first ever men’s doubles title with Federico Staksrud. This time around, Patriquin did it with Pablo Tellez in front of a packed house on Friday night during the quarterfinals. 

The Johns Brothers won the first game, 11-8, and then Big H and Pablo took the second, 11-3. In the third game, Hayden and Pablo at one point were up 10-4. The Johns stormed all the way back – beating off match point five times – and were up 11-10 on the second serve, with their own match point. Pablo and Hayden got the sideout and then rattled off three quick points, winning the match, 13-11. 

If you only watch one match from the weekend, I would highly recommend it is this one.

The Australians Came to Play

Mitch Hargreaves and Tom Evans, both pro pickleballers from Australia, made their way to the PPA Tour this week. We have seen Hargreaves before, who is quite talented. Evans is newer, having only played his first pro pickleball tournament in February of this year. Both players are converted tennis pros.

Evans had to make it through pro qualifiers since this was his first time playing in the States – there were 106 qualifiers and only eight spots in the main draw. Evans was up to the task, however – beating all three of his qualifiers opponents in two games by a combined score of 67-33.

As the No. 49 seed in the main draw, Evans beat No. 14 Rafa Hewett, 11-2, 11-6. He then followed that up by beating No. 22 Tyler Loong, 6-11, 11-0, 11-4. Beating two top 25 Americans in his first first pro event is pretty incredible. Eventually, Evans lost to the best singles player in the world this year – Federico Staksrud – 1-11, 8-11.

Hargreaves (No. 52 seed) got a wild card slot into the main draw and made quick work of singles specialist No. 23 Anthon Gudz, 11-7, 11-1. He then went up against lesser known Ammar Wazir – No. 53 seed – and lost, 4-11, 11-13. 

Men’s doubles for the duo and mixed doubles for Hargreaves and Alex Walker didn’t go as well, losing in the first round of the main draw. The Australians showed promise, though, and I would expect them to continue catching up to the USA with MLP Australia and PPA Australia.

Top Plays from San Clemente

He did it again folks. James Ignatowich made the SportsCenter's Top 10 Plays with his patented no-look backhand flick ATP for a winner:

This singles point between Ben Johns and Hunter Johnson had an Erne, ATP, and a tweener ATP defended:

Allyce Jones doing Allyce Jones things:

A great point overall in men’s doubles between Collin and Ben Johns and Casey Diamond and Eric Roddy – this one has a little bit of everything:

Naveen Beasley put up a valiant effort against Ben Johns and hit a winner on this point without even knowing it:

Not to be outdone, Ben Johns hits the most casual winner while standing straight up against Naveen Beasley:

Big H goes beast mode in a hands battle in men’s doubles and Federico Staksrud gives him a nod of approval:

MLP Medal Count

  1. New Jersey 5s - 🥇🥇🥇
  2. Dallas Flash - 🥇🥉🥉🥉
  3. LA Mad Drops - 🥇🥈🥈
  4. Carolina Pickleball Club - 🥇🥈🥉
  5. Orlando Squeeze - 🥈🥉🥉
  6. Texas Ranchers - 🥈🥈
  7. AZ Drive - 🥇
  8. St. Louis Shock - 🥈
  9. Brooklyn Aces - 🥈
  10. D.C. Pickleball Team - 🥉
  11. Las Vegas Night Owls - 🥉

Paddle Manufacturer Medal Count

  1. Selkirk - 🥇🥇🥈🥈🥉🥉
  2. JOOLA - 🥇🥈🥉🥉🥉
  3. Paddletek - 🥇🥇🥇🥈
  4. Franklin - 🥇🥈🥉🥉
  5. Babolat - 🥇
  6. Engage - 🥈
  7. ProXR - 🥈
  8. PIKKL - 🥉
  9. Lotto - 🥉

Complete Results

Women’s Singles

  1. Anna Leigh Waters
  2. Catherine Parenteau
  3. Judit Castillo

Men’s Singles

  1. Chris Haworth
  2. Federico Staksrud
  3. Ben Johns

Mixed Doubles

  1. Anna Leigh Waters/Ben Johns
  2. Catherine Parenteau/Christian Alshon
  3. Jorja Johnson/JW Johnson

Women’s Doubles

  1. Catherine Parenteau/Anna Leigh Waters
  2. Jessie Irvine/Tina Pisnik
  3. Parris Todd/Hurricane Tyra Black

Men’s Doubles

  1. Dylan Frazier/JW Johnson
  2. Hayden Patriquin/Pablo Tellez
  3. Tyson McGuffin/Dekel Bar
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Erik Tice

Erik Tice

Erik produces content for The Dink related to pro and collegiate pickleball. He is an avid watcher of pickleball and became passionate about the sport in early 2022.

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