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2017 September Cup Tournament Report

Steve Dettre and his 1966 flats

Steve Dettre and his 1966 flats

A field of 8 players, ranging from some of Australia’s most experienced table footballers to brand new players, gathered to contest the 2017 September Cup, the 13th edition of this annual tournament. The rules of The September Cup stipulate that only Subbuteo branded bases, goalkeepers, pitches and balls are to be used, so the event is always a fun one where players get to reminisce and pull out their old teams. This year, Steve Dettre went all out and used his original ‘flats’, purchased by his dad in 1966 and still going strong. Meanwhile Paul Magee used the Celtic team he’s had since 1969 – that’s over 100 years of Subbuteo history in those two teams, and players, alone!

Eliot and Adrian soak in the spring afternoon.

Eliot and Adrian soak in the spring afternoon.

Two groups were created for the initial stages. Adrian Elmer, using his hand painted España ’96 squad on 90s bases, faced Eliot Kennedy, using his 1970s heavyweights. Eliot took the lead but Adrian was able to peg back a goal to see the match end in a draw. Meanwhile, in the other group, Dave Sultana took the early initiative in the group of death with a 1-0 win over Paul Magee (a club league fixture between the two two days earlier had seen Paul get up by two goals to nil) while Tony Credentino scored a dramatic last minute equaliser in his match against Steve. In the second round of games, Eliot taught new player, Jason Potter, the ins and outs of the game – Jason using his billiards experience to quickly get on top of flicking angles. Costa Kamarados, playing with his early 80s lightweights, bought as part of a World Cup Edition box set at an Op Shop a year or so ago for just $2, went down 2-0 to Adrian, Paul and Tony played out a goalless stalemate and Dave continued his fine form with another 1-0 victory over Steve. In the third round of group games, Adrian saw off Jason 1-0 as Jason began to work out some solid tactical ploys, while Eliot put Costa to the sword. In the other group, Dave was already guaranteed of top spot but the other three all had a chance of progressing, depending on the results. Tony couldn’t get over Dave to force home his slight advantage, meaning Steve slipped past him with a slim victory over Paul. In a final catchup game, Costa finally found his touch, slotting three unanswered goals past Jason.

The Repechage Semi-Finals saw relatively comfortable wins for Tony and Paul, while the main Semi Finals were much tighter affairs. Adrian continued his unbeaten record over Dave, though the tight game could have gone either way. The other semi final, between, the two old sparring partners, Eliot and Steve, resulted in the tournament’s only shoot-out. Eliot put his shoot-out hoodoo to rest, finally taking the victory after seven shots each, to go to the Grand Final.

6 of the 8 starters.

6 of the 8 starters.

In the Repechage Grand Final, a goal from Tony finally managed to split he and Paul after their earlier goalless draw. In the Grand Final, Eliot and Adrian also faced each other for a second time, having met in the group stage. This time, Adrian scored the first goal towards the end of the second half. Eliot pressed hard for the equaliser in the second. The final few minutes saw him completely dominate possession, but an off-side figure that couldn’t be moved meant he was unable to enter the shooting area while Adrian kept his defence well organised. In the end, Adrian was able to hold on, in the process staging just the second successful title defence in the tournament’s long history.

An absolutely great afternoon played in the best spirits, with the different cloth and nylon pitches and the wild variety of curling and bobbling bases and figures adding an extra element of fun. See you all again next September!

for more photos, click here.

for full results, click here.

2016 September Cup – Subbuteo Parramatta

It was a tale of those who had and those who hadn’t practised their shootout skills in the 2016 September Cup. Shootouts decided both the Opens and the Junior grand finals in high drama, a fitting culmination this season’s edition of Australia’s longest continuously running annual tournament.

Imojjen (left) vs Æowyn.

Imojjen (left) vs Æowyn.

The Juniors were typically tight in their match-ups. Lucas started with two draws, one each against Imojjen and Æowyn. This meant that the final group match between the sisters would have a vital bearing on the final standings. In the second half, Æowyn worked the ball into the shooting zone, but didn’t have any figures close to shoot. Imojjen, thinking there was no danger, didn’t bother picking up her ‘keeper but looked at what defensive flick she might make. Æowyn saw her slim opportunity, and slotted an attacking figure between two of Imojjen’s defenders from distance, getting a perfect cut on the ball. It took both players a few seconds to realise the ball was in the back of the net, and Æowyn’s typically vociferous squeals alerted the entire premises that she was, for the first time against her sister in a competitive match, in the lead. She held on to top the standings. The three decided a grand final play-off between the top two would be good, so Æowyn forewent her chance to take the title outright, laying it on the line in a decider.

In keeping with their 1-1 draw from earlier in the day, Lucas and Æowyn slugged it out for a goalless draw, sending the match to shots. In a tense shootout, the lead changed hands through the duration. With her 5th and final shot, Æowyn hit the far post, the ball rolling across the line and stopping dead half-way across – no goal and no victory! So, to sudden death. Æowyn had been practising shootouts for use in her school competition, and the techniques paid off. She successfully kept Lucas’ next two out and, though she was unable to score from her first sudden death shot, she was able to clinch the title with the next, winning her first ever tournament.

Kostas vs Antonio (background), Steve vs Paul (foreground)

Kostas vs Antonio (background), Steve vs Paul (foreground)

In the Opens, two groups were assembled and players chose their respective classic Subbuteo teams, ranging from 70s heavyweights through to contemporary 21st century Subbuteo brand figures, all to use on vintage cloth and nylon Subbuteo pitches and tiny little Subbuteo goalkeepers. Steve opened his account with a tight 1-0 tussle over Dave. Adrian came out all guns blazing against Tony, scoring 3 but also allowing Tony a goal via a travelling goalkeeper error. Mat was matched up against Kostas, playing his first competitive match since his teen years in Greece. In a good showing, he was pipped 1-0 by Mat. He struggled a little more against Adrian, conceding 4 goals. Meanwhile, in one of the day’s surprising results, Tony scored two early goals and a third later in the piece to put Mat to the sword. Newcomer, Paul (who had only played his first ever game of Subbuteo 4 days earlier), held up reasonably, going down 3-0 to Dave. In the final match up of Group A, Steve went on a bit of a spree against Dave, including one final miracle goal. Utilising the classic Subbuteo curl, Steve managed to use three figures doing a series of curls to touch the ball, then play it forward, for another figure to curl and connect. Then the final curl around a defender to touch the ball, play it back for the final figure to shoot into the top right corner! Mat scored one of the goals of the day – a long range effort chipped into the top corner to beat Adrian, while Kostas scored his first goal of the tournament, though conceded four to Tony.

So Steve faced Tony in Semi-Final 1. Midway through the half Tony took the lead, piling the pressure on Steve. However, Steve settled in to his groove, drew on his years of classic Subbuteo experience to come from behind and win 3-1. In Semi-Final 2, Dave took and early lead against Adrian but Adrian pulled back the equaliser soon after. A tight second half failed to split the pair so shots it was. Neither player was particularly good, each managing only a single successful shot of their first 5. Dave then buried his first from the corner in sudden death to pile the pressure on Adrian. However, in a change of form, Adrian also scored his to keep the game alive. His practise with Æowyn then paid off, as he first saved Dave’s next shot, then slotted home to win the match.

Mat had to leave early to prepare for a hot date, so Kostas and Paul played a consolation final, Kostas’ childhood experience showing as he put three past Paul, though Paul did, excitedly, have his first ever competitive shot on goal. In the 3rd/4th Play-off, the day’s most surprising result again featured Tony, though this time he was on the receiving end. Dave put him to the sword with 4 unanswered strikes, though claims only 1 of them was a well-worked goal deserving of the title!

The victor and the vanquished

The victor and the vanquished

In the grand final, Adrian faced Steve. The September Cup, using figures that players are less used to using, had provided Adrian with his only ever victory over Steve in the past, so Adrian was hopeful he might be able to spring a minor upset over the favourite. The game was evenly balanced throughout, but Adrian managed to take the lead towards the end of the first half, positioning himself well for a relatively straightforward shot. But there was drama to come. With just 5 minutes left on the clock, and the taste of victory on Adrian’s lips, he played an innocuous ball across his own goal box with a defender. Except that it didn’t quite go across as planned. The ball trickled gently towards the goal and Adrian’s desperate lunge towards his goalkeeper was not enough to keep the ball, and the own goal, out. Steve doubled his efforts to snatch the victory, employing the world famous ‘Magee Swarm’ for the final few minutes, though neither player could take advantage of their respective late chances. So, another shootout. With Æowyn’s recent shootout victory fresh in his mind, Adrian used his training, keeping Steve goalless in the shootout, taking the match, and his first September Cup title since 2007, with a shot to spare.

Many thanks to all who played, including our two new competitors who were introduced to competition play via this tournament played in the best of spirits with great camaraderie and fun.

For full results, click here.

For more photos, click here.

September Cup 2016

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The days have started to get longer, footballers are becoming either nervous about their upcoming semi-finals or disappointed to have missed out this season. The grass is starting to grow again after hibernation and temperatures are starting to warm up. That can only mean one thing – the September Cup is just around the corner, signalling the start of the new Subbuteo season!

The September Cup was first played in 2003 and is now Australia’s longest running annual Subbuteo Tournament. This year, it returns to its spiritual home date of September 3, the 13th anniversary of the first edition. The September Cup is also unique in the Australian Table Football landscape as it is the only tournament where only Subbuteo brand equipment is used – balls, pitches, figures and ‘keepers. See the golden oldies’ eyes mist over as their figures curl gracefully. Hear the younger players curse as they struggle to stop anything with ‘keepers half the size they’re used to wielding. Feel the warmth and idiosyncrasies of traditional cloth and nylon Subbuteo pitches.

The tournament will be held at the Subbuteo Parramatta Clubhouse, starting at 12:30. Entry is $5 to cover the cost of drinks and nibblies. All players are welcome, regardless of age, gender or Subbuteo experience. New players are always welcome and all equipment is provided if you don’t have any of your own. The tournament will also double as the first round of the newly rebranded Sydney Subbuteo Circuit – a series of 8 tournaments over the season to help determine Sydney’s champion players.

Subbuteo Parramatta September Cup – 2015

Eliot explains the rules for the benefit of new players.

Eliot explains the rules for the benefit of new players.

The September Cup is unique in the Australian table football landscape in that it is the only tournament played entirely with Subbuteo brand equipment – figures, pitches, balls, even goalkeepers. For new players, it’s a good introduction to the game while for older players, memories of a bygone era, complete with skills that are mostly obsolete in the contemporary game, are relived with relish. On the same day that saw a couple of Australian’s take on the might of the world in this year’s World Cup in Italy, the 11th edition of the September Cup saw a good field of players ranging from those with vast experience to brand new players, those eligible for the Veteran’s category through to those still eligible for the U12 category. All competed well and all came away with stories to tell of their highlights for the day.

New boy, Daniel, takes on Æowyn.

New boy, Daniel, takes on Æowyn, on a vintage Subbuteo cloth pitch.

Players were drawn into two groups of 5, with two seeded players in each group. Highlights from the group stage including first time player, Daniel, scoring his first goal and recording his first win, as did the day’s youngest player, Lucas (ironically, against Daniel). Schoolboy rivals, and September Cup regulars Paul and Costa faced each other for a draw which allowed neither of them bragging rights. In her match against Paul, Imojjen spent the entire game on the attack but couldn’t find the goal, only to be undone on the counter in the final minute as she pushed her players forward, Paul taking his first win of the day. After two-and-a-half hours of group games, however, it was the seeded players who all found themselves in the top spots of those groups, a draw between Eliot and Gordy being the result of most note.

Imojjen defends against Lucas' attack.

Imojjen defends against Lucas’ attack.

In the Repechage Barrage, Imojjen faced Daniel while Paul lined up against Æowyn. Both games ended in 0-0 draws. As both Paul and Daniel needed to leave early, they each then conceded, meaning the Elmer girls earned passage to the Repechage Semis. Here was where the real action took place. Imojjen and Lucas fought out a tense 0-0 draw, with both coming close to scoring on numerous occasions. In the Costa vs Æowyn match-up, Æowyn took the lead, scoring her first ever competitive goal, and the entire suburb of Toongabbie heard about it!! Her celebration was something to be heard. Unfortunately, she later conceded an equaliser, meaning the game also ended up level. With time running short, all the minor placing play-off games were shelved with the players all very happy to end on equal terms, having achieved their own respective individual achievements along the way.

In the main Semi-Finals, Eliot drew Adrian with Daniele facing Gordy. Both games were tight. Daniele had the edge over Gordy, spending a good 8 or 9 minutes playing a series of corners but struggled to break through Gordy’s dogged defence. In the end, a single goal was all that split the players, being scored to Daniele to reward him for his possessional dominance. In the other game, Eliot was finding himself in an unfamiliar position, needing to do a lot of defending against Adrian. Eliot’s classic 70s Burnley team were producing some exquisite curling flicks that Adrian found impossible to defend and which gave Eliot great satisfaction, but their unreliability on long flicks saw him concede possession regularly. He did, however, take the lead, somewhat against the run of play, before half time. In the second half, Adrian committed extra figures forward and was eventually rewarded with a penalty when a quick play saw him shoot, the gaol bound ball cannoning into Eliot’s hand stranded in the box. Adrian made no mistake from the spot, tying up the game. Which is how it stayed through extra-time, setting up a shootout for the result. Eliot missed his first 3, while Adrian scored his 3rd to take a lead. Eliot then pulled one back with his very next shot, which was followed by an Adrian miss. Eliot couldn’t take the advantage with his 5th shot. Miraculously, Adrian found the far side of the goal with his final shot, giving him his first ever result over Eliot and sending him to a rematch with Daniele in the Grand Final.

Eliot on the move against Gordy.

Eliot on the move against Gordy.

In the 3rd/4th play-off, Eliot rediscovered his form and was able to slot a goal past Gordy in each half to take the game 2-0. Gordy was able to stage a fake trophy presentation to impress Little Steve, who was absent for the afternoon, no doubt gorging himself on pavlova. Steve was duly impressed with Gordy’s ‘win’ – who knows if he’s discovered the truth yet!!? The Grand-Final itself got off to an explosive start. Daniele flicked off and within 15 seconds had worked into the shooting area where his shot found the hand of a shell-shocked Adrian, in a reverse of what he had done earlier against Eliot. Daniele calmly slotted the penalty home to take the lead. A tense, tight game was then played out as Adrian sought to get back level. A minute before the break, he finally got on equal terms with a nicely chipped shot. However, following the change of ends, Adrian conceded possession directly from his flick-off. Daniele again raided forward and, again, within 30 seconds was in the lead after a quick attack and well taken shot. Adrian came excrutiatingly close to a wonder-goal equaliser midway through the half but the deftly slotted shooting figure cut the ball just a little too fine and the ball trickled past an unprotected far post. With both players giving everything, Daniele was able to hold on and take the title, becoming the 6th different winner to have their name etched on the famous trophy. The win also means that Daniele moves to the top of the table in the Sydney Premier League after two tournaments.

Daniele becomes the 6th player to have his name inscribed on the trophy.

Daniele becomes the 6th player to have his name inscribed on the trophy.

Thanks to all who attended, both new players and old regulars, and enjoyed themselves greatly. And thanks also to the Australian Table Football Association’s new Marketing and Promotion’s Manager, Chris Tanner and his company, Zenith Sports and Events Management who, in an Australian first, live streamed a couple of the afternoon’s games to the wider world.

For full results, click here.
To see more photos, click here.

Subbuteo Parramatta September Cup 2015

click the image for full size version

click the image for full size version


The September Cup is an annual Subbuteo tournament that has been held since 2003. This year, the September Cup also doubles up as the second tournament in the Sydney Premier League (click here for details) series of tournaments.

While all the current laws of Subbuteo will be used in the September Cup, there is one major restriction – that being that only original Subbuteo brand figures are allowed to be used in the tournament. So bring out your old heavyweights, your old flats, your old zombies, your old Hasbros, even your brand new bendy-legs – or borrow some of ours if you don’t have any. We’ll be preparing a selection of Subbuteo’s finest pitches – nylon pitches, cloth pitches – for you to test your original Subbuteo skills. Competitors will need to be adaptable to a wide range of conditions!

All players are welcome, no matter your age, gender, whether you’ve never played Subbuteo before or you’ve been playing for 50 years! The tournament will run through the afternoon of Saturday, September 12 at the Subbuteo Parramatta clubhouse in Toongabbie, from 1pm to 7pm and we’ll finish with a traditional September Cup feast of pizza.

Fill in the form below to register for the competition.

Subbuteo Parramatta – September Cup 2014

The two outside pitches in action during the group stage. Steve Dettre (back left), Jonny Ball (centre), Adrian Elmer (front left) and Ethan Foster (right)

The two outside pitches in action during the group stage. Steve Dettre (back left), Jonny Ball (centre), Adrian Elmer (front left) and Ethan Foster (right)

Subbuteo returned to its roots in the September Cup, bringing back the days of cramming into lounge rooms, dining rooms and garages, to hover over cotton and nylon pitches and play with round based figures. With a variety of conditions present on the different styles of pitches – from smooth and fast to Field A, affectionately known as ’The Glue Pot’, players had to show versatility in their skills to do well. A field of 8 players with a diverse range of abilities locked horns in a Swiss System tournament that later ran into a finals series as everyone was keen for more games – and a grand final! Early results went the way of Steve Dettre and Ethan Foster, while Adrian Elmer and Jonny Ball played out a tense scoreless draw, as did youngsters Imojjen and Æowyn Elmer, the random draw pitting the sisters against each other in the opening round. Jonny Ball began to revel in the old pitch conditions as his bending and shooting skills gave him significant wins in the next few rounds. Adrian Elmer made his way through all 5 of the Swiss System rounds without conceding a goal, though did struggle at the pointy end of the field, leaving him with a string of draws to go with his two victories. After missing the first round due to a long drive to the venue, previous September Cup winner Phill Parker began to crawl his way up the table while another former champ, Alex Jennings, squeezed into the top four. Making his September Cup début, Ethan Foster had a mixed bag of results while Steve Dettre quietly went about building a consistent run. Continue reading

September Cup 2014

sep cup 2014
Last year, Alex Jennings was able to fluke his way through two penalty shootouts to take glory in the annual September Cup Subbuteo Tournament from under the noses of former champions Phillip Parker and Adrian Elmer. Costa Kamarados and his Greeks put in a great run to the semi-finals while new boys and girls, Jono Wilkes, Brontë Scott, Dan Wilkes, Imojjen Elmer and Paul Gorjan learned a lesson or two along the way.

Continue reading