Monday, 1 January 2018

Western Flickers WASPA 19 - Farewell 2017 tournament

With the Asian Cup just around, many Melbourne flickers took the opportunity for more match practice. As a result there was a really good turnout of 10 players in the Open category and 5 players in the Junior category, with all 3 Melbourne clubs represented.
The juniors played a simple round robin format. Despite a loss to close friendly rival Alex Briffa, tournament favourite Benjamin made up for it by winning the rest of his games and taking out the Junior title. Although Alex would end up undefeated, a couple of costly draws meant that he finished up second. Congrats to young Crystal who continued her progress by securing a draw with the much more experienced flicker Aidan Deverell.

The Open players were allocated to 3 groups using the FIFA World Cup draw method of using seeded pots based on the latest WASPA rankings. As a result, the groups were evenly distributed with ranked players.

As expected, Australia’s WASPA #1 ranked player Benny and ATFA president Benji won their groups comfortably. The other group was a lot closer with the standings only being decided in the final matches. On-form Luke prevailed with the much improved Anthony causing a small upset to finish runners up ahead of higher seeded flickers Simon and Adam.

Luke romped into the tournament final with an unbelievable 5-1 rout of Benji Batten. In the other semi-final, Benny playing on home turf edged past Adrian Connolly 2-1 in a tight affair. So it was to be a “Battle of the Club Presidents” in the final between Benny (Western Flickers TFC) and Luke (Melbourne TFC).

In the grand finale, it was a tale of two halves. Benny dominated the first half and cruised to a 2-0 lead at half time. Luke came out after the break with all guns blazing and totally dominated the second half peppering Benny’s defence with wave after wave of attacks. Somehow Benny managed to cling on to a clean sheet and secure the final WASPA title for 2017.

After the tournament concluded, the club enjoyed a traditional Aussie BBQ followed by a fun-filled board gaming session. It was a fabulous fun day for young and old, with all matches played in great spirit and sportsmanship. What a great way to sign off 2017! GO PELICANS !!

The final tournament standings are:

Open category
1. Benny Ng
2. Luke Radzminski
3. Adrian Connolly
4. Benji Batten
5. Christos Garagounis
7. Anthony Madiona
8. Steve Wright
9. Simon Briffa
=10. Kevin Grant
=10. Adam Deverell

Junior category
1. Benjamin Ng
2. Alex Briffa
3. Harrison Briffa
4. Aidan Deverell
5. Crystal Briffa