This weekend sees the blue riband event of mano a mano pelota with the Manomanista Championship final between the two greatest players of the decade, Aimar Olaizola and Juan Martinez de Irujo. There is little one can say about these stars of the game which has not been said a thousand times over, so suffice it to say that this should be a stunning sporting occasion. Irujo was forced to fight to get past Mikel Idoate in his semi, while Olaizola thrashed Oinatz Bengoetxea in his. Bengoetxea subsequently went on to ease past Idoate 22-9 in the third place play off, demonstrating just how impressive Aimar’s mauling of him was. However, anything can happen in a big final and while Olaizola has been the better player over the past year, Irujo is extraordinarily hard to beat when the stakes are at their highest. Don’t miss it.
Friday 22nd June, Urrestilla
22:00 (CEST) OLAZABAL – PENAGARIKANO v ARITZ LASA – LARRINAGA
Followed by TITIN III – MERINO II v GONZALEZ – BARRIOLA
Sunday 24th June, Bilbao
16:45 (CEST) LEMUNO – IZA v MENDIZABAL III – LADIS GALARZA
Followed by OLAIZOLA II v MARTINEZ DE IRUJO Manomanista Final
To watch, go to http://www.eitb.tv, https://www.eitb.eus/es/television/etb-sat/orhttps://www.eitb.eus/es/deportes/deporte-en-directo/
Image from Aspepelota under creative commons
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I can say something about these stars of the game that hasn’t been said 1000 times over:
Juan Martínez de Irujo is more animated than Titin.
Aimar Olaizola is an inferior pelotari to his brother.