Sydney TFC’s Fabrizio Coco claimed the 3rd edition of the Christmas Cup, a traditional tournament organized by Sydney Table Football Club. This year for the first time it was also played under the FISTF regulations and format as a Satellite event.
It was a very good turnout of Open players and junior players coming mostly from local area of Sydney but also interstate. The great weekend started with a traditional dinner draw. A big surprise during the draw was seeing Fabrizio Coco in the same group with clubmates Daniele Lombardi and Antonio Credentino — definitely the group of death!
The tournament had 4 groups with a total of 14 Open players and 2 groups for the U19 category for a total of 7 players with Gabriel Lombardi, Oliver Ollnow and Jonty Brener taking part also in the main category and played an incredible level showing how far they have grown during these years!
Raffaele Lombardi (Sydney TFC) current number 55 in the world ranking, was the top seed player and favourite to win the title, followed by Eliot Kennedy (Northern Falcons WR 81), Fabrizio Coco (Sydney TFC WR 107) and Hermann Kruse (Northern Falcons WR 204).
It was a pretty easy life in their group stages for Raffaele and Eliot in their groups, but not really for Fabrizio who had to face his top team mates Daniele Lombardi (1-1) and Antonio Credentino (3-1) but still finished first in his group on goal difference. Herman finished 2nd in his group on goal difference, behind Giuseppe Tardiota (Brisbane Subbuteo Club WR 165).
The quarter finals started with a big match between the two Sydney TFC brothers Raffaele Lombardi vs Daniele Lombardi (2-1) followed up by Jonty Brener vs Giuseppe Tardiota (0-2), Oliver Ollnow vs Fabrizio Coco (0-2) and Eliot Kennedy vs Hermann Kruse (4-1).
The semifinals were just as tight, where everything was about to happen.
Raffaele Lombardi and Giuseppe Tardiota finished 1-1 after Giuseppe took the lead. Only the Golden Goal saw decided the victory for Raffaele 2-1. In the other semifinal Fabrizio Coco vs Eliot Kennedy was a game plenty of occasions from both sides where Fabrizio took the lead in the first half and Eliot equalized in the second half finishing the game with 1-1 results. Only the penalty shootout decided the fate of the game that saw Fabrizio winning 2-1.
The Open final was a Sydney TFC matter between Raffaele Lombardi and Fabrizio Coco, battling without pause. An intense game well refereed by Eliot saw Fabrizio claiming his 2nd Christmas Cup title winning 1-0 against his club mate.
In the junior category Oliver Ollnow (Northern Falcons) took the title beating in final Gabriel Lombardi (Sydney TFC) 2-0 .
Congratulations to all the players who competed in the tournament and many compliments to the incredible juniors growth in the game!