When SAHA Officials started the royal ceremony to introduce the best players of the big ball game, Tyree’s name was called out first to receive the eighth place trophy and honor. Bastidas was greeted by cheers and applause not just from the media and royal family, but from the rest of the nonroyal populace.
But after we did the math on how the royal family determined who gets the 8th, 7th and 6th place, we concluded that Tyree didn’t deserve the 8th place trophy. We approached former King George Figueroa and pressed him for answers and after he had a brief meeting with SAHA executives he came back to us with the good news that Tyree was indeed the 7th place winner.
Not happy with King George’s answer, we pressed him even further with more questions as why can’t Tyree get the 6th place trophy? After all Tyree and King George were tied for the 6th place honor as King George and Tyree lost their last battle in the same round with similar scores, 21-17.
Historically the big ball royal handball family has had only pure big ball players as members and it found itself uneasy to have a pure 1-wall small ball player among the royals.
King George didn’t have an answer to our inquiry, but he promised us he would ask a higher authority at SAHA. A few minutes later, King George emerged from a second short meeting “I was told the decision to give the 7th place to Tyree rested entirely with SAHA highest Authority and not with me” King George said.
Though essentially symbolic, the Official KOTC Top 8 Finishers order is evidently important amid the big ball royal family, as these earn them respect in the handball community.
We can only speculate that King George was awarded the 6th place honor out of respect for his age and his great reputation that he once commanded when he was crowned King of the Courts in the past.
Although we don’t completely agreed with this reasoning and the way Tyree was displaced from the 6th to 7th place, we have re-arranged SAHA Official Royal order of succession in the name of fair competition . After all, Tyree (a small ball player) earned more merits as a 22-year-old by beating all big ball players, including current big ball world champion Tywan Cook.
Congratulations to the best big ball 1-wall players in the world:
1st Place – John “Rookie” Wright
2nd Place – Timbo Gonzalez
3rd Place – Yuber “Pee Wee” Castro
4th Place – Francisco “The Wolf” Aponte
5th Place – Justin Rodriquez
6th Place – Tyree Bastidas
6th Place – George Figueroa
7th Place – Andres “Playstation” Calle
Top Photo by USHA
Take the television away after the game finishes and that would be the end of the show for most folks watching the games at home. But if you come and watch the games in person and get to see your idols, there might be a big possibility to also meet them backstage after interviews are done.
That was the case of Paul Brady after winning his eighth national title on June 30, where he was interviewed under the shadow of Tyree Bastidas. Nope, Paul Brady didn’t feel uncomfortable with Bastidas hovering over him; neither had he cared about Bastidas’ intrusion.
P. Brady knows that almost every national champion in every handball version has celebrated and taken pictures with Bastidas’ image overlooking in the background. In fact, most players around the country have taken pride at the rare opportunity to pose with Tyree, and Paul is not different.
SkyBounce is preparing to take a bite of the big Apple by launching a new small ball to take on the 21 ball, which is the USHA official ball that generates thousands of dollars in revenue.
SkyBounce, the main big ball supplier for New Yorker’s pastime (1-wall), launched a new product (small ball) in Brooklyn on July 7.On July 14, it debuted in Manhattan at the Mayor’s Cup where it got good reviews.
Now, the SkyBounce small ball is ready to take on the USHA 21 ball by going head-to-head against USHA official ball.
Promoting large and loyal audiences for important events such as the Mayor’s Cup in the City and other tourneys in Coney Island will be one of SkyBounce major tasks as it tries to gain market-share as the A-1 handball has already done.
USHA, which had a six-decade head-start over its competition, generates thousands of dollars in ball sells annual revenues, with 30% of it going back into the prize money.
The A-1 ball, which debuted in 2012, has already taken a big chunk out of the small handballs market in NY. During the spring and while attending a tournament in Coney Island, we noticed that a lot of players practicing at the courts were using the A-1 balls.
SkyBounce will be the second company in New York to distribute small balls.
For the first time in the history of this tournament, two brothers cornered the division and one brother slammed (won singles/doubles).
Tyree Bastidas started the trend by slamming the Mayor’s Cup in 2011 while his brother Jurell slammed in 2013 by teaming up with his little brother, Tyree.
“I had seen Oscar and Ruby Obert slam before in the 60’s, but I never seen two brothers as young as Tyree and Jurell doing it” an old handball enthusiastic said.
Indeed, this is not the first time we hear this comments around the city. Most people remember the brothers Obert’s winnings when the brothers Obert were in the late 20’s and 30’s.
“When I watch Tyree and Jurell play as a team, they remind me of the good old times of handball playing in the early 70’s another handball fan said.
An England Film Director (name omitted) has been traveling and filming around the world for more than a year. But when he came to New York this summer he couldn’t help keeping his eyes in the 1-wall game throughout New York. He realized that 1-wall was part of New York daily life and decided to include 1-wall in his Film.
He made several contacts where he was put in touch with top 1-wall players Tyree and Jurell Bastidas. An agreement was reached and both parties; The Film Production crew and the players, Tyree and Jurell met at an undisclosed handball court in the City for various handball exhibition games to be recorded.
We were impressed by the professional equipment used for our fast-pace game. Cameras were rolling back and forth on tracks set up in the back and on the side of the handball courts. Interviews took place after the exhibition games and people surrounded the players to take pictures with them.
We will keep you updated on this film that promises to deliver the best of the best of the 1-wall game through a foreign film.