Lots of laughter, some outrageous goals, shots and genuine comradeship were features of the Northern Falcons Christmas Doubles Cup.
Sydney’s love affair with the doubles format stretches back to the early 70s when Don and Gary Hosie created the idea at the North Sydney Boys High School in their Subbuteo competitions.
Over the years, there have been some slight revisions to the rules, but in essence the format remains the same: two players control one team, with one player controlling the defence, the other the attack, and roles reversing at halftime.
It can sometimes be frustrating as the actual number of flicks is reduced, but it also allows for spectacular moves, with shots on the run from free-play, as well as set pieces.
The latest tournament had it all.
With 15 players, we have 7 pairs and Simon Cole volunteered to be the ‘lone wolf’ in the early round.
There were four ‘father/son’ pairs, which tested family ties, as “advice” was either ignored or rejected in classic “father-son fashion”!
As always, it took players some time to come to grips with the format, and goals were at a premium.
In group 1, Fab and Torben were held by Tony and Paolo, while Geoff and Eliot (whose friendship stretches all the way back to those early years of Subbo at NSBHS) scored the first goal of the night against Kostas and his son Dimitris.
Geoff and Eliot headed to the semis after their 1-0 win against the Credentinos, while Fab and Torben hit their straps, beating the Barbaris’ 2-0, then the NSBHS old boys 2-0.
In Group 2, Simon Cole, returning to play a
fter many months of sabbatical, showed he had not lost his touch, with some great moves and an excellent ‘cut’ shot to beat Steve and Louis. Jonty and Neil were held by Adrian and Stefanos, before Simon scored another 1-0 win against the Breners. The Dettres sweated on the result of Adrian and Stefanos against Simon, before scoring to beat the Breners and qualify for the semis.
In the semis, Simon was paired with Adrian Grunbach, and they performed well against a sterling effort from Eliot and Geoff, winning 1-0. In the other match, Fab and Torben were looking like a well oiled machine, taking a 2-0 lead into halftime, where they held on.
In the final, Fab and Torben came out on top, winning 1-0 to cap a great night.
Many thanks to the Falcons players for bringing food for the night, and to everyone for playing in such a great spirit, with laughter ringing out all night.
I’d like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and all the best for the New Year.
Results: Christmas Cup