In the year 2055, When the next generation looks through the TTFE records they will confused with what they see when they arrive at Thursday 30th April 2015.
I’m sure they’ll be scratching their heads as to why 1) there were 21 invited players and 2) why we had an odd number of players. (Especially the latter one – even numbers are A MUST!)
Then again, they will wonder who was the legend known as Pridee….
That’s why this post needs to be written. To explain everything to the future torchbearers of TTFE!
This was the first ever ‘Three Team Tournament’ – just like regular TTFE but with an extra team moaning on the sidelines about how long 10 minutes really are.
So there was a Blue Team captained by Chris Phillips, a Green Team led by G and a Yellow Team headed by Karl Manley. There were a few comparisons made with political parties competing in next week’s election but that would mean Chris would be David Cameron, G is a tree-hugging eco-warrior and Karl is a flip-flopping, untrustworthy liberal. I’ll say no more.
The tournament was officiated by a mystery figure in charcoal, who took great pleasure in barking instructions, carrying a little notebook and crushing players’ dreams with this whistle. Sounds like a real bastard!
So the rules – Tournament was played in the ‘winner stays on’ format. Consecutive winning teams were allowed to stay on the pitch for a maximum of 5 games before being ejected (this actually happened twice). Games lasted for a maximum of 10 minutes or less if a team scores 2 goals. Games were recorded as wins (3 points), losses (0 points) or draws (1 point) with goals scored and conceded also being considered. If a draw occurs the pitchholder (winning team last game) stays while the challenging team is ejected.
The opening game between the Blues and Greens was a good advert for what to expect all week – fast paced, passion filled play. Captain Chris in Blue took first blood, but it was Team Karl that took the early advantage with some steely determination.
As they grinded out the necessary results, Team Karl led from the sticks as his luminous glowing yellow rods of uranium asserted their dominance on the pitch. We even were treated to a long-ranger goal from Barbarian Callum.
But as the Yellows celebrated and cooled down after their 5 game residence at Sophia, the Greens were licking their wounds and plotting something wicked.
Team G grabbed their first win of the night and dished out some revenge on the Blues, who put them to the sword in the opening game. And clearly staying on the pitch had an effect on them as they went on to beat the tournament leading Yellows.
However it would be their next game which would be the decisive encounter – and where a big game comes, controversy was bound to follow.
The Yellows felt that they were back on winning ways when the ball struck one post, skittled along the line and hit the other post for the keeper to collect it. It seemed that everyone but the referee was convinced it had indeed crossed the line, but the man in charcoal was having none of it and ruled it out.
With the unstoppable force of the Greens taking 2-0 victories in each of their 5 games, they gathered enough points to win the tournament. Well done to them!
The tournament’s Fair Play Award goes to Pishty, who took his sinbin for two handballs in one game with grudging acceptance. Well done to him too.
So G leaves as tournament winner and TPC champion – not bad for TTFE’s resident superhero. This night was momentous as it marked the departures of G, who has a single way train ticket down to Somerset, while ex-pat Jon Pride is returning to Oz for another two years of life down under. Both clearly heading off to sunnier climes! Good luck to you both and we hope to see you back at Sophia in the near future!