Due to knowing some of the Participants and Organizers in the UKTC through various past tournaments and Eurobowls, we decided to make the journey up north to York and participate in the first UK Team Challenge. That is Team Hellhound with Jokaero (Dwarves), Budspencer (Woodies), Candlejack(Dark elves) and myself (Strider84 with Undead).
After travelling to York on Friday morning we did some sightseeing and had a more than you can eat Chinese dinner which was quite awesome. Unfortunately it also made us pretty tired and after saying hello to some fellow coaches in the Brigantes Pub we went to bed rather earlier than expected.
Registration started at 9 so we went to the venue shortly after that and then had enough time to buy some breakfast before round one at 10am. We got matched up against the organizer (Pippy) and his brother and colleagues. I myself played Schmee who was a very nice fellow. Undead vs Undead where the kickoff was for me giving me lots more blocks where sooner or later the casualties came and with some luck I could break him in his drive and even score the 3:0 in the last turn. with another win and tie we could decide the first game with 5:3 for us.
Next up were "Ze Germans", the other german speaking team and our colleagues. My game was a bit scrued after a double 1 on a gfi with my ghule, where the pro elfes could rush in and secure the ball. this not only gave Kithor the 0:1 break but also reduced my bash potential, which made it even harder to break him in half 2. even though I could get the ball free once, it was only with a turnover that the elves could then still pick up and secure again for the 0:2. Lesson learned, don't fail GFI against good coaches with pointy ear players :-)
While the Woodies got beat by undead the dwarves destroyed the Chaos pact with killing the Ogre in turn one and the Darkies beat the Dwarves for a tie.
In round three we came against some English fellows me playing against Hangus, which I happened to play before at the Dungeonbowl a couple years ago. He still remembered since he got slaughtered with his amazons, so he was up for a revenge. With his woodies against my undead it would probably be with tds and not casualties though :-). after coming in really aggressive with 3 players in my half, I could somehow cut them off so they had to pass, but they did as they are elves and scored in turn 2. Having 7 turns for my offence and the tree not really helping laying on the ground I got the 1 1 in at halftime. once the strip ball wardancer was crowdpushed after striping the ball successfully just to be caught again by my ghul, the Mummy blitz on the tackle wardancer started the snowballing which left Hangus with only 4 players for the one turn score attempt. not riot and a 2-1 victory.
while the other Undead beat our Dwarves and the Woodies lost against the dark elves, our Dark elves in turn beat the Humans for another tie.
So 1 win 2 ties after the first day, we were still in the game if everything went our way on the next day. We enjoyed the classic UK Pub food Burger and then went on to "the old white swan" where blood bowl players flooded the place as much as the beer flooded our bellies. The very brave even made it to the famous Popworld club and pulled out long forgotten dance moves. Bad tongues say the ladies were plenty more in size than beauty, but who am I to judge ^^.
Nevertheless, after a short nights sleep we were ready again for day 2. I was a bit surprised to find a dwarf roster with a chainsaw on my opponents team sheet. Add to that a chainsaw blitz that did not get through the mummy and a pitch invasion where the only runner was stunned, and the dwarves were under so much pressure that the 1:0 for my undead was not really avoidable. With the chainsaw out and another 1-2 ko the drive for the 2:0 was pretty straightforward, I scored in turn 6 to still keep the game fun but it stayed 2:0 at the end.
A Woodelf one dice skull in the last turn prevented the clean sweep but we won the round 7-1 and went up in the rankings into French territory.
At lunchtime we treated ourselves with some traditional Fish and Chips which happened to be better then expected :-)
Pilous Pilous was our next opponent, starring the usually loud and funny Matt_le_fou with Undead, rippersly, foxxx and galmor. My game against ripperlys Chaos dwarves was probably the most intense game, especially since this tourney all my games seemed to be quite clear decided early on. My offence was more or less ok and I started to have a chance to break through one side, when my Mummies delivered 2 casualties in one turn (dwarf and Goblin). This released some pressure and I could go through the middle. and advance. running away from the bulls is almost always hard, but with the blodger ballcarrier and 2 more ghouls covering I went deep into his half. his bulls could only get next to my ghul, and with a dodge and a one dice blitz I could get my ballcarrier free. turn 7 and possibility to stall, though he could have either blitzed me with 2 4+ or gotten next to my ballcarrier wo any dice but gfi with the bulls, so I decided to score, also because there were no more rr left for the CD. With only 9 players the defence seemed harder then expected, also because the kickoff gave the so much needed RR to the CD. he played it pretty save and got in range with 2 bulls, ball with the goblin in midfield only in reach for a one dicec blitz with 2 gfi. I decided to let him roll and only made 2-3 gfi and 2 dice blocks wo block to shut the handoff possibility. the 4+ passed worked, but the 4+ catch did fail and I could go into halftime with a 1:0. Puh!
Then the offence of the dwarves with 1 dwarf and one goblin out. ballcarrier picks it up but snakes a gfi on the open field in turn 2. I can't pick it up but neither can he secure the ball, and the next turn my mummy can blitz the bull and cas him at the same time. my blodger picks it up and the goblins continue to fail gfi that could get them one dice blocks on the ball.
A rather lucky 2:0 for me, backed up with a win from the dwarves and a tie from the woodies for the 5-3 win.
That brought us to table one and against the Spanish guys. we were 3 points behind, in 3rd place, so a victory could still bring us the win if everything goes our way. I played malasnoticias with Norse. Luckily I won the coinflip and could start hitting the av7 linos with my mummies. no armour break though and the third block with my wight was a double skull. I had the ball well covered so I decided not to reroll. Unfortunately that was followed up with a pickupfail in the next turn. there was a lot of pressure then, but with 2 ond dice blocks I could get the ball free and pick it up with a ghul. best place to go was where he would only get a 1 dice with some gfi, which he took and sacked my ballcarrier. ball bounces and the snow troll also moves next to the ball. I would have to trie to pick it up next to the troll but could not even try, because my Mummy quadraskulled the block on the berserker next to the ball.
I would have gotten some more 2 dice or 1 dice on the ball with 3+ dodges, but continues to fail each one of them having the norse score the 0:1 in the first half. in the process I also lost a mummy ko where the wight came back. A kickback destroyed my possibilitites to apply early pressure, and after another 2 kos desperate measures were needed. I dodged into the cage on a 6 and actually made it, just to roll the skill on the one dice. Malasnoticias scored in turn 5 still giving me a theoretical chance to even it up with lots of luck. I went for the 2 turner but failed a 3+ dodge which then got the ball free and sealed the game 0:2. As the other tables were not looking much better (except the dwarves who beat the undead) we lost the game 2-6 and that was enough for the Spanish guys to take the title and set us in final Rank 6.
Overall a good tourney, but personally the games were not as closed as I'm used to. We ended the day with a nice meal in an Italian restaurant, practicing the Italian food looking forward to the World cup in Lucca in November :-)