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Pictures of the eXtreme dirt Croquet court back hoops.



Last Updated 01/02/09.
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      Here we have the reverse or back hoops.  Might be the same hoops played forwards but on an eXtreme court like ours it might as well be on another property: 


      Hoop 7 is almost straight forward excepting it's somewhat narrow confines.  Rather a relief given how tough it is to get to. 


      And it even offers a rather inviting shot at hoop 8.  But we know better.  Running down the middle of that alley is a spine.  You can't see it but boy does it deflect balls left and right.  Really tough to nail that one from afar.  Even tough to lay up to it.  Bitchin', just like the rest of the court.



      Hoop 8 is an eXtreme case of constriction.  Those sheds are only just far enough away to make a playable corridor, but oh la, have there been some long fought contestations here.   Not to mention the challenge of having to bank it off the walls if you happen to be on this side of the hoop 8 when it's run to get to hoop 9:


      Actually these days we keep hoop 8 about a foot diagonally off the corner of that shed there on the left right where those blue dots are.  Means that anything left of the hoop on the way in will be corrected nicely but also allows for more elimination of opposition balls as when the walls are equally far away there's nowhere that doesn't have a shot that isn't right on the hoop.  Now at least you can send stuff off to a much larger area on the right without it having a shot.  Also opens up a little corridor between hoop 8 and the shed to knock balls off towards hoop 9. 


 


      And once you have banked it around that corner there's the other pole of the clothes line.  The pole on hoop 1 doesn't come into play more than a quarter the time as this one does.  Maybe it's ground left of the pole making balls break subtly towards it or what, but lordy it don't half get in the way. 


      And way off in the distance there's hoop 10 -- behind the palo verde tree.  You can either take the high road (right) and hope you don't get stopped by the orange tree and wind up short or the low road and wind up well left nine times out of ten. 



  


      And OMG, look at that, there's almost nothing in the way of hoop 10.  'Cepting the break of course.  And the other palo verde on the right, but it's benign by the standards of our court. . . 


      Even the transition from hoop 10 to 11 is benign.  Well, except for that little depression and the slope.  But hey, that's gravy here.  (Yes, I used the hoop 3 photo, sorry).


 


      Hoop 11.  Pathetically easy.  Unless of course you're trying to lay up on the thing and then it's just fast enough that balls are going to roll on past the hoop into the depression on the other side of it. . .   


      Just don't leave your ball too far to the right after running hoop 11 and wind up with the shed between your ball and the hoop, you can't bank stuff all that well off the cyclone fence on the left.  Well, no one has yet, put it that way.



      And the finishing hoop.  Nothing to it really.  Not since I whacked a bunch of the concrete on the left and managed to move the hoop just far enough away from the gaping maw of the old tin shed:   

    
      Although there's something subtle going on here that no one's been able to figure out.  Only way to nail that hoop from any kind of distance is to smack it hard, anything less will break either left or right, whatever is required for the ball not to go through the hoop.  I have my suspicions that the sand is just a little bit thicker and that makes the balls wander, but it's unconfirmed.

      So there you have it, you can have croquet in Arizona without a lawn.  And after playing this baby, grass is dead easy, let me tell you. . . 


      The front hoops are here





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