Greg takes third place!

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It’s been a while but Greg managed to take third place over Rolan in the Team Picker Cup 2014 after a dramatic penalty shootout.

After a tight encounter with the scores tied after 10.30 we had to have a winner – so a penalty shootout was the only option for a victor to be found.

It looked like Rolan had it in the bag going ahead to make it 2-1 with only three penalties each to take, but a dramatic save from Tom forced the game into sudden death. Then Tom turned on the keeping supershow with a great save to win the game for the Merthyr Magician.

Greg has offered to write up his own version of events as this reporter wasn’t present until the end, so we will wait and see what helped him secure this important victory!

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Quarter Final: Karl P V Joe

 

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They love each other really

Winner: Joe

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Team Joe: Luke, Gaji, Joe, Rolan, Pishty, Paul, Chris P

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Team Karl – Mike, Billy, Karl M, Karl P, Tom, Dan, Chris S

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Quarter Final: Dan V Rolan

Winner: Rolan

Summary in a Sentence: Rolan booked his place in the final with a dominant team display throughout against Team Dan.

“In the next round Rolan will struggle to find a better team than he did this time – especially when the goal machine who helped him fire will be his opponent in the Quarter Finals”. That’s what I said two games back, when Rolan just made his way past Callum in his opening TPC game. Did he struggle? Not one bit.

Team Rolan

Team Rolan – Joe, Karl M, Rolan, Pishty, Karl P, Dave G, Josh

Team Dan

Team Dan – Chris S, Paul S, Gaji, Billy, Dan, Chris P. Tom

The pick looked to be fair at first, with perhaps Rolan edging it with more of a balance between attack and defence. It’s always difficult to pick when there is someone unfamiliar in the list and this week Josh was playing his first game at TTFE after being invited last minute. He eventually went to Team Rolan – certainly as the captain knew of the capability he had in going to win the game for him.

Typical weather for this time of year, the rain which fell earlier in the day transformed the pitch into a virtual ice rink. In truth though it did little to change the outcome of this game, which was only going one way. This was perhaps the most one-sided TPC game since that strange ‘6 v 5’ semi final between Big G and Chris P.

So why was it so one sided? It’s hard to say – as I’ve already stated the sides weren’t exactly  top heavy in a captain’s favor. There was no lack of effort on Team Dan either, who chased down every ball and fought in each challenge. Team Rolan just seemed to have control of this encounter from start to finish.

There isn’t much more to say really – but if I had to I would suggest that sometimes things just don’t click and sometimes they do. But I have to ask, does Rolan have the magic wand needed to grab TPC glory? Let this be a warning to everyone…

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First Round: Karl P V Big G

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The face off!

Winner: Karl Powell

Summary in a Sentence: A scrappy, but competitive game which saw the new boy Karl Powell vanquish the existing champion against all the odds.

So the King is dead. His reign lasted just over half a year; a time period he could do nothing about as the last tournament overran and he won 2013’s tournament in March 2014. But even the pundits thought he would last until some X Factor has-been turns on Cardiff’s Christmas lights.  The TPC earthquake has come and gone, but the tremors will continue as the champion, Gareth Big G O’Neill, will no longer be  participating in this tournament.

The young upstart who tossed him aside and unleashed this natural disaster inflicted the first defeat upon Big G since his semi final loss against the first ever champion Jon Ridout in 2012. There couldn’t have been a tougher, but more satisfying way to win his first ever TPC game as a captain.

It wasn’t a classic by any means in comparison to last week’s masterclass from Team Rolan, but it wasn’t a one-sided affair either. Another factor which didn’t help matters was the occasional torrential rainfall which at one point meant that the game had to be abandoned. At least we had brooms to brush away the excess rainwater and offending foliage!

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Team Karl: Chris P, Billy, Dan, Karl P, Tom, Callum. Paul

 

 

 

 

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Team G: Greg, Mike, Pugh, G, Joe, Karl M, Chris S

 

 

 

 

 

 

With no Pishty at the pick arguably the key striker would be Dan, who Karl grabbed – forming potentially a tasty striking partnership in itself. Meanwhile G built his side around a meaty midfield – deploying the services of rain-god Michael Pinto Castro, the versatile James Pugh and the pacey Chris Swanie, whilst the captain played the typical workhorse at the heart. However without an out and out striking option, were Team G doomed from the start? Only a fool would say goals don’t come from midfield.

As the wet weather took its greasy grip on the game, the players struggled to adjust to the conditions – allowing the ball to take a life if its own. Overhit passes and lapses of concentration meant that possession swapped sides quite often, making this the scrappy affair which it will be remembered for.

Team Karl however perhaps enjoyed more possession and argubly the more menacing attack. With Callum and Paul manning the back, the wave of four including Chris P, Karl P, Dan and Tom was a lot to handle for Greg and Karl M in defence. Their direct style was reaping rewards and was the main reason for their commanding position in the first half. On the other side, G provided the engine room but perhaps was struggling to maintain a balance within his players as defence and attack was often disjointed.

Things may have looked bleak for Team G, despite all their passion and resilience, but they were still in this game kicking and screaming. Pugh was in fine form, Swanie was producing excellent runs and Mike was testing Billy in goal. Karl Manley even pushed up in the second half and grabbed a hat-trick plus 1 for himself. No Karlito Kool celebration however!

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G accepting that his side gave it their best shot

In the end though Team Karl did enough to withstand the resurgence of Karl the Player. It was the decisive pick which gave them a more balanced side and the firepower to create one of the TPC’s biggest shocks. This now means that the TPC will have a brand new champion – but will Karl go all the way?

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19 players you will find at a TTFE game

Over a week ago, Calum put up a great link on Facebook (http://www.punditarena.com/football/english-football/rbarrett/19-guys-you-always-see-at-five-a-side) which describes typical characters you would come across in a 5-a-side team.

It gathered great interest from a few TTFE members who started to compare players with the characters depicted in the article – most of which are good humoured such as the ‘fat guy with the touch’ or ‘one who is always late’. So when Chris decided to do a TTFE poll to see who we all think fit into each of the roles, a great survey was conducted with around a dozen entries.  You can find the results in gold, silver and bronze order where appropriate. Thanks to all who participated! Remember – this is all good natured fun (after all I’m the one of the ‘fat guys with the feet’!) so please take it in the true typical TTFE spirit.

The things I do for Chris’ crazy schemes…

1.  The Organiser

A1

 

 

 

2. The Guy Who Thinks He’s Player Coach

A2

 

 

 

3. The Guy Who Turns Up In Full Metal Studs

A3

 

 

 

4. The Guy Who’s Always Late

A4

 

 

 

 

5. The Guy Who Has To Leave Right On The Hour

A5

 

 

 

 

6. The Guy Who Uses The Sides

A6

 

 

 

7. The Guy Who’s So Tired He Goes In Goal

A7

 

 

 

 

8. The Hatchet Man
A8

 

 

 

 

9. The Guy That Shoots From Everywhere

A9

 

 

 

10. The Goal Hanger

A10

 

 

 

11. The Guy Who Fell In Love In With The Booze

A11

 

 

 

12. The Guy Who Loves Tricks

A12

 

 

 

 

13. The Guy Who Somehow Puts It Over The Fence From Two Yards

A13

 

 

 

 

14. The Fat Guy With The Lovely Feet

A14

 

 

 

15. The Guy Who Pretends He’s Been Shot When Tackled

A15

 

 

 

 

16.  The Joker

A16

 

 

 

 

17. The Guy Who Does Everything To Avoid Going In Goal

A17

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

18. The Guy With The Robocop Style Knee Strap

A18

 

 

 

 

19. The Guy Who Runs Off Before Paying

No-one! You’re all great at paying these days.  

 

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First Round: Callum V Rolan

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Winner: Rolan Hazuki

Summary in a Sentence: A second half demolition job neutralising a timid Team Callum capped off a superb, all-rounded performance from Team Rolan.

It was a whisker away from not even being a Team Picker Cup game, but in the end with a bulky fixture list looking to be played out by January – something even optimists are finding hard to see happening –  decisive action was needed to force the tie to go ahead. Good thing it did too – as this was perhaps the best TPC match we’ve had in a long while. Whilst the scoreline suggests it was one-sided the game had just about the right mix of passion, vigour, tactical theorising and technical execution. I’d even put my head on the block to say that this was my favourite TPC game of all time.

The stage was set for a classic tussle between the hardened TPC veteran Callum Gigg against the young upstart Rolan Hazuki, who has been present as a player in all TPC tournaments but now has decided to play master rather than puppet. The strings would need to be handled well however as Callum is certainly no Punch or Judy – his impressive debut finishing in third place back in 2012 an indication of his ability to get the results when needed, with even the current champ Gareth O’Neill a notch on his TPC bedpost.

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Team Callum – Joe, Mike, Chris, Callum, Tom, Greg, Pugh

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Team Rolan – Gareth, Dan, Dave, Calum, Rolan, Billy, Paul

The first pick was out of the ordinary as not one of the recognised goalkeepers was picked; a growing trend in TPC that attack is becoming the best line of defence. When completed, one would say that on paper that Team Rolan looked the stronger but both teams had the right blend of all the positions to make the game competitive.

“Play for the Welsh armband” the patriotic Callum cried with a resounding, but a familiar controlled, Celtic hwyl. However if Team Callum were being driven by a warm nationalistic fervour, Team Rolan appeared to operate through a colder form of logic. So much so, that I have to admit that Team Rolan were arguably the most functional team I have ever seen in a TPC game; demonstrating an efficiency in all areas of the pitch including flexibility and rigidity when necessary, ruthlessness when in attack and patience when under the cosh.

Billy wasn’t too busy throughout but he showed his metal when he needed to, especially when his one handed stretch save stopped an almost certain goal.  In defence, El Capitan Rolan formed a strong partnership with Paul which proved to cause Team Callum a world of problems when the danger loomed. The freedom shown to the forward four was just what they needed to form a burgeoning attack, which gorged on the empty space left by the hesitant Team Callum midfield and defence.  Dave Germon was enjoying a central role injecting extra invention into the attack when it looked like it’s going stale, meanwhile Gareth and Calum (Sayer) worked the flanks like the wingers of the old – menacing, fast, terrifying. Then completing this destructive diamond was Dead-eyed Dan, who not only carried the ball from midfield to attack with relative ease but was also finding the bottom corner with precision and pose. I always say in 5-a-side it’s not always about finding the best players, but more about finding the right players for the right positions and for me Team Rolan have Achievement Unlocked: Most Functional Team Ever.

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On the other side, Team Callum were not the toothless beast I’ve painted them to be. They too had a bite which came from exploiting the back line and a game plan. When Callum and Greg were running the back and feeling pressured, they employed Tom to sit in between them in the middle – an area of the pitch where he naturally naturally thrives when pushing up. With the defence bolstered this inadvertently invited unwanted pressure, although it did force the back line up which was a gift for Chris and Pugh to exploit. Mike provided backup by opening up space and allowing the others to make inviting runs. Chris, ruthless and tenacious as ever, played to his moniker of ‘Mr Rebound’ as he chased every parried shot and scored from a loose ball. He also scored a wonderful headed goal from a corner which was to be important to bring the scores closer at half time to 5-3.

Team Callum also showed an element of defiance to their opponents who could be accused of being a bit heavy handed in their challenges. When Chris shouted “I’m going in with my shoulders!” in the game’s final third it was a retaliation to what had been a rough ride from a set of arguably bully-boy tactics. Greg was the personification of this strength over adversity as his nasty collision with Calum left him with a large bump on his forehead but he continued as if he’d been hit by a feather. His first and only thought was to give the ball back to me as the keeper – Vinny Jones eat your heart out.

The game was effectively over as the second half began to unfold. Team Callum got off to a terrible start conceding two further goals – one of which a Gareth one-on-one keeper nutmeg he’ll be most proud of – and as the game plan switched to a more attacking formation, the ball supply to the attack was tapering off, with Chris becoming more frustrated with little to do. Team Rolan, knowing the game was won, continued to feed their hunger for goals and finished the game with a cushion of six goals.

The Welsh armband inspired a spirited charge, but it wasn’t enough to overcome the might of Rolan’s well-oiled unit. In the next round Rolan will struggle to find a better team than he did this time – especially when the goal machine who helped him fire will be his opponent in the Quarter Finals. Dan will also be out to avenge his early exit from last year’s TPC, so expect sparks to fly for this intriguing match-up.

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First Round: Chris V Pugh

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James Pugh V Chris Phillips

Winner: James Pugh

Summary in a Sentence: A replay in challenging weather conditions favours a clinical Team Pugh for him to his first ever TPC victory over a spirited but nervy Team Chris.

As the dust settles on what was an extraordinary saga in the Team Picker Cup we need to look back to fully process what has happened. Two weeks ago the tie was unfortunately abandoned due to the injury of Pishtewan, who is scheduled to play to winner of this qualifying match. Both captains agreed to replay the fixture on the following week and play the reminder of the game in the regular TTFE format. It was also ultimately decided that the game would start off afresh with Team Pugh’s 4-2 advantage wiped to zero – a decision which could have come back to haunt TTFE’s Mr Nice Guy.

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Heal up soon Pishty!

As the sides were assembled, Chris decided to shake things up from the last game by picking Joe first – not his keeper of choice from the last fixture – whilst Pugh opted for Billy and Dan on his first pick.  The sides looked very balanced with each one looking strong in defence, having plenty of pace and good attacking options. Plus with no Pishty and Big G, whose consistent winning records almost make them factors themselves in picking a successful team, it really felt like an even playing field.

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Team Chris – Joe, Paul, Dave, Rolan, Chris P, Calum, Chris S

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Team Pugh – Mike, Callum, Billy, Dan, Pugh, Tom, Greg

As always a particular factor at the Team Picker Cup is the exposure to the elements and how each team prepares for them. Once the rain became unexpectedly heavy five minutes after kick off game plans were effectively thrown out of the window (thanks Met Office!). Pesky puddles which appeared across the pitch made the passing game difficult, whilst the bounce and run of the ball dictated long balls would need pinpoint precision. Options were limited as became a game for the runners, rather than the passers.  Play was even abandoned at one point due to a particularly bad shower and the keepers – Billy and Joe – shown on a number of occasions why this weather is hell for those in gloves, with a number of slips and misjudgements of the ball.

Team Pugh took an early lead as the rain lashed down but Team Chris did enough to keep up with his competitor, keeping the game competitive until half time when only a single goal kept Pugh in front. After half time Team Chris started brightly but the pressure of always being behind perhaps created an imbalance between attack and defence, with extra initiative to push forward meaning the back was left exposed; particularly on the counter attack. Team Pugh on the other hand looked more balanced by soaking up the pressure when necessary and attacking fiercely when Team Chris looked vulnerable in defence. Each player played a key role in their dominance; Mike always loves this weather for his meandering runs, Dan was reliable in getting the ball forward, Tom provided aerial coverage.  Greg and Callum happily got involved at times whilst Pugh surveyed behind his attack and chipped in – again, when necessary.

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Two key observations of Team Chris which led to their downfall was perhaps the lack of clinical finishing up front and the losing of the ball when in midfield. Whilst Team Pugh thrived running up the field, Team Chris often found it hard to get the ball to the attack and were often caught napping in the middle of the pitch, cheaply giving away possession to their opponents. When Team Pugh started to pull away with a three goal cushion, bravado said ‘never die’ whilst reason said ‘Houston, we have a problem’. Chris – TTFE’s Mister Bravado – now was listening to his head rather than his heart.

The game finished with a bitter end as Chris vented his frustration at how things were going and towards the final whistle, which was blown by the game’s referee, Karl Manley. This was the first ever TPC game to be officiated and Karl endured a long evening of rain, ranting and possibly regret as players cried foul and handball throughout. He had a good game overall and I hope that after his decision not to officiate next week, the experience wasn’t too traumatic!

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Karl provides his thoughts on being the referee and criticism of not wearing distinctive clothing.

So well done to James Pugh – finally a winner at the TPC on the third time of asking. After such a tricky tie, can he go all the way? Pishty now awaits in the quarter finals. Meanwhile a crushing defeat for Chris means he will not be able to better last year’s performance in the semi finals and will have to accept an early exit. Will we have any peace and quiet from him while the tournament moves on – unlikely!

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TPC Referee Karl Manley and Chris Phillips look on as James Pugh arrives late

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First Round: William V Greg

The toss

The toss!

Winner: Greg Davies

Summary in a Sentence: William’s strong defence and pilfering of both keepers was not enough to withstand the attack presented by a well-drilled, determined Team Greg.

Is it that time already? As the leaves begin to fall and a new autumn season is upon us, it fits right that we return to the newly renovated Sophia Gardens outdoor pitch after a summer in the sweatbox AND too right that the Team Picker Cup tournament will crown a new champion by Xmas (or so we hope). Back in Spring Gareth O’Neill defeated Greg Davies to become our second winner of the tournament, building on his impressive semi final performance the year before. Greg’s return to TPC action was to be immediate as the draw paired him with the dangerous Billy Collins, who made the final back in 2012 and lost to our first ever champion, Jon Ridout. One favourite therefore is facing an early exit in what is arguably the tie of the qualifying round  – and one hell of a prospective opening game.

From the pick it was clear that Billy wanted to build from the back – securing a sturdy defence, obtaining Joe as a backup keeper and also acquiring Mike who could carry the ball forward. Meanwhile Greg used his first pick to take Pishty and looked to form a stronger attack to compensate for the defensive options which were swallowed up by William. Both captains went in goal for the kick off.

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Team Billy – Luco, Joe, Mike, Pugh, Callum, Tom, Billy

Team Greg - Pishty, Rolan, Chris P, Greg, Gareth, Karl M, Chris S

Team Greg – Pishty, Rolan, Chris P, Greg, Gareth, Karl M, Chris S

The game started in good spirits and was similar to previous opening Team Picker Cup fixtures; full of vigour and enthusiasm with everyone eager to get off to a good start for themselves and their captains. It wasn’t long though until the atmosphere became increasingly sour, with tempers becoming shorter than usual. One particular incident which happened early on in the game which exacerbated this was when Team Billy lost the ball and Mike went to retrieve it, during which Team Billy conceded 2-3 goals. A misunderstanding between the teams then ensued over stopping the game when the ball couldn’t be found, leading to a confused handball situation and subsequent free kick for Team Billy. Although the pink-turning-red mist had soon lifted, a slight aura of irritability remained between both sides throughout the match adding competitive bite, but also unwarranted heavy handed challenges.

So as Team Greg raced to a 4-1 lead Team Billy finally started to come into the game, taking a few goals as the leaders went to sleep. As they started to panic they managed to stop the derailing and pushed into a 6-4 lead for half time. By now the earlier misunderstanding had fully been addressed.

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The second half started more brightly for Team Billy with more confidence going forward as Billy came out adding some vitality to his side, but they seemed to be blunt in front of goal. At one instance Team Greg survived a three shot salvo as Team William put the pressure on but couldn’t find the net.  Meanwhile the partnership between the two Chris’, and Pishty was causing Team Billy’s defence all kinds of headaches. Team Billy were also hindered by an jarring to the knee of Mike which further affected the attack.  For the final 15 minutes or so it felt like there were no more than four goals between the sides but as Team Billy pegged one back it was instantly wiped out. There was a spirited effort by Team Billy at the end to get back into the game but by now Greg knew that he could start planning his assault to reach the semi finals against Karl Manley – the same opponent he met at this stage last year.

It was a tough defeat for Billy who was visibly dejected after such a brutal effort. After the game he admitted that Greg deserved to win the game and players certainly felt that the game was lost in the pick, with TPC titans Pishty and Big G being on the winning side once again. As for Greg is there an omen for the title this year? Jon and Gareth went onto to win the last two cups respectively after winning the opening fixture of the TPC. No pressure Greg!

What were your thoughts of the game? Post them below or on Facebook!

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TPC Final: Greg Davies V Gareth O’Neill

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What. A. Game.  The month is May and we’ve already crept well into 2014 for what was a 2013 competition but boy, it was worth the wait. This was the final we’ve been waiting for – passion, drive and determination evident in every kick, every run and every battle cry. If the overall plan was to get each player fighting vigorously for their respective captain then it was fulfilled ten times over. This was a stage show as much as a competitive final, with the main components of the evening’s proceedings coming together perfectly.

The main actors within this gripping finale played their parts brilliantly. Enter Gareth O’Neill; the self-styled ferocious firebrand that demands 110% and commands respect who fell famously at the semi final stage last year. His trademark of ‘extreme vocal’ has been one of the main reasons why he is a favourite for this competition.

On the other side Greg Davies, the canny, but coy operator who has been fairly quiet in his début season in the TPC – but let it be known he too can also dish out a bowl of harsh discipline to his troops when required and his pragmatic picking ability has arguably won him his seat at this final.

The stage – or the pitch – was itself damp and slightly greasy after a day’s rain but at kick off the precipitation was easing off. Lastly the players – who all clearly were fired up for such a big game as the Top 14 attendees all took part; a rare occurrence at TTFE.

So the teams were:

Team Gareth - Gaji, Rolan, Dan, Gareth, Karl P, Joe, Tom

Team Gareth – Gaji, Rolan, Dan, Gareth, Karl P, Joe, Tom

Team Greg, Greg, Pugh, Callum, Billy, Mike, Chris, Pishty

Team Greg, Greg, Pugh, Callum, Billy, Mike, Chris, Pishty

Team Gareth had the fire power of Karl Powell, who has dazzled the competition with his own brand of stylish football, as well as Dan, who has struggled in the TPC but certainly has the ability to be a game changer. This mutual respect as the TTFE’s trusted goal machines usually keeps them apart during the team picking as this was to be only the second time in the TPC they have played along side each other – interestingly the last time was also under Team Gareth in the semi final (and that ended with a resounding victory which gifted Gareth his place in the final). Meanwhile on Team Greg, you cannot overlook the raw power of Pishty, who has been setting TTFE alight with his fancy footwork and deadly accuracy when shooting. Together with Mike, who always thrives in the wet conditions and can partner Pishty well in attack, not forgetting influential Chris and pacey Pugh, this ensured that goals were on the menu.

It was Dan who wetted his hungry appetite first as he grabbed an early hat-trick to make the game 3-1 to Team Gareth. During this goal blitz Dan also executed a fine flick to pull away from the defender and place the ball in to the net on Billy’s far side. The game plan was to smother Team Greg forcing them to error and this was effective in keeping Team Greg quiet in attack. Team Gareth started to pull away to six goals, but sloppy errors meant Team Greg crept back into it making it 6-4 at half time. Nerves jangled on both sides and as Team Gareth looked to be in a commanding position to win the game, it was still a contest.

It was in the second half where this game really started to move into third, fourth and fifth gear. The rain returned making the pitch even greasier and instantly injecting additional speed into what was already a fast and frantic game. This was also fuel for the fire that burns within Michael Pinto-Castro, who was certainly rubbing his hands with glee at the prospect.

At first, despite the optimism that came with a change in the weather Team Gareth just seemed to consolidate their position by two further goals. It was then that the game flipped as Team Greg began to take the game to their opponents and force them to make the same errors which allowed them breathing space in the first half. Now Pishty started to turn the pressure on – taking what space he could to allow him to wind up for the all important at goal. Team Greg tied the game at 8-8 and now the winds of change were in favour of the Merthyr Magician. Could they go to take the lead for the first time? Sadly for them it was not to be. Team Gareth got back on track as they stole the run of play, perhaps taking advantage of a foul call which boiled over – showing frustration from both sides.

The vocal heard across the pitch was like nothing we’ve seen in a long time at TTFE. Shouts of encouragement were echoed by sighs of disappointment, over a lost ball or a wrong decision when bearing down on goal. Gareth was characteristically barking orders from midfield, while Callum’s trademark ‘keep him on his’ call was working in overdrive, as he commanded his defence with Billy providing authoritative guidance in goal. This was also a night for the goalkeepers who did the right things at the right times; Billy making some outstanding stretched arm saves and Joe foiling a few one-on-one situations with his feet.

The game then reverted to true cat-and-mouse style with Team Gareth pulling away then being pegged back soon after. Now the mistakes mattered as either side needed a hero or simply an opponent who would throw the game away.

At 10-10 and the clock running down, Team Gareth had just about enough in the tank to take the lead for the last time and finally start to pull away. It was well past 10.30pm by now and we were expecting the lights to go out at any moment. Any grace given by the Sport Wales in leaving the lights on would have been vital minutes for Team Greg to mount a final charge but the swift hand of the receptionist cruelly ended Greg’s dream of lifting the TPC mug and shirt. Gareth had done enough to win with a comfortable three goal cushion and take the TPC title.

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What were your thoughts on this year’s final? Was the game on the team picking or was it the determination of Team Gareth that won them the game? Who was the best player this tournament? Maybe I’ll set up a poll to see who you think and the winner will get a free drink from the kitty? 

See what our captains thought below – and as always we would love to hear your thoughts!

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Keep on Rocking in the Free (Game) World!

We all love the fact that every once in a while after playing a few games at TTFE we are informed that our next game is on the house. Yes – free games are an important part of ensuring that the money is filtered back to those who pay. After all, it’s your money!

However after years of handing out free games to our players, it’s time for a change. Don’t worry about losing your free games though – in fact, we’ve been looking at ways to ensure free games are being allocated fairly to you and that those who play, don’t have to pay… as much!  Up until now we’ve had a formula in place which allocated the free games but it became clear to us that it became updated and a new method was needed to reflect the current times at TTFE. Not only are the new rules fairer, but they are also easier to follow and reward regular players as well as encouraging bib washing!

Every player who has a lower free game to games played ratio (number of games played divided by free games received) than the current number of 32.01% is entitled to a free game. Simple as that.

However there are five extra rules which may mean you don’t always get your game for free. They are:

  • The Long Term Player rule -Player must have played at least 5 games in the last 150 weeks of TTFE.
  • The Short Term Player rule – Player must have played at least 3 games in the last 26 weeks of TTFE.
  • The Gotta to Be In to Win rule – Player must not be “OUT unless stated” – so you need to have your status set to IN!
  • The Greedy Freeby rule – Player must not have the highest Free to Played ratio/percentage at the current game. In other words – the greedy person that has had the most free games based on the games he has played!
  • The Bib Bastard rule -Player must not be in the bottom 3 Bib to Played ratio/percentage at the current game. So make sure you wash those bibs!

Each week on the Money Shot you’ll see the Bib Bastard rule (in yellow) and Greedy Freeby rule (in orange).  So when it comes to free games – remember the rules and play for free at TTFE!

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