An end to the pools and knockouts have begun!
October 1, 2022 by Marina Symington in Recap with 0 comments
A busy day in the women’s division saw all teams finish their pools as well as additional crossovers for the pools of three (D and E). In the afternoon, those teams qualifying for the top 16 played the pre-quarters just as the rain decided to close in and steadily worsen over the course of the games. As things start to line up for the quarter-finals tomorrow morning, let’s take a look at some of the highlights from day two here in Caorle.
The lower brackets
The young French team Freezgo (Bois) missed out on top 16 qualification after losing a tight game to Troubles (Warsaw). The two teams were evenly matched for the first half and much of the second, with neither team ever ahead by more than one break. Freezgo has on its roster a number of players from the French U20 team who came second at WJUCC earlier this year, filling the team with plenty of young talent that is likely to flourish over the next few years. Experience shone through for Troubles today, however, as it effectively used its timeouts during long points in the second half to secure a couple of breaks in a row and take the game 15-11.
Freezgo is now playing for 17-22 positions in Pool X and will be joined by Synthesis1 which has shown moments of promise but, having never played together before, has struggled to convert points and has lost all its games so far. The final team in that pool is CUSB Cheetahs (Bologna), who are the development team for Shout. The other teams which missed out on spots in the pre-quarters and make up pool Y are Heidees (Heidelberg), Mantis (Vienna), and Swing to Hell (Bratislava).
Making it through to pre-quarters as best third-placed teams, based on point difference, were East Block (Prague), Panthers (Wroclaw), CUS Padova (Padua) and DiscoBolo (Bologna) in that order. All of these teams met their match in the pre-quarters, though, and none managed to secure a spot in the quarters having had to play the top four seeds in the bracket. Out of these, East Block came the closest to progressing, giving CUSB Shout (Bologna) a good game and losing only 11-15 against the two-time European champions and last year’s finalists.
The line up for quarters
Shout will play SUFC Valkyria (Stockholm) in the quarter-final tomorrow morning. Valkyria have had an interesting route to the quarter-finals. They only just beat DicsoBolo in their pool on universe (15-14) and lost to 10-15 to Seagulls (Hamburg) in crossovers. But this afternoon they went on to beat FABulous (Bern) and secured themselves in the top eight, perhaps with hopes of beating last year’s fourth place. Shout has been much more consistent than Valkyria so far in this tournament, with the Swedes’ roster containing several pickups, making them much less cohesive as a team.
Bristol Women (Bristol) gave YAKA (Noisy-le-Sec) a great game in the pool this morning, but eventually lost to the French women 15-12. This put Bristol second in its pool and progressed through to the pre-quarters, where it really found form against Dublin Gravity (Dublin). Bristol and Gravity are two teams that have faced each other several times already this season, most recently at UK Nationals, where Gravity beat Bristol convincingly. With World Games star Molly Wedge back, however, Bristol is looking confident, and the Molly Wedge/Carla Link duo, alongside defensive efforts from 6ixers pickup Jessie Tsang, were integral to the 15-8 win. The Bristol vs. 3SB quarter-final tomorrow morning will be an exciting one.
On the other side of the bracket, we have an all-German quarter-final: jinX (Berlin) play will play Seagulls. The winner will face whoever is victorious between YAKA and Box (Vienna). Based on their performances so far, YAKA, which is yet to lose a game, will likely beat Box to play one of the Germans. Between the Germans, who have played each other already several times over the season, it’s jinX which is looking strongest having also gone unbeaten.
So this means tomorrow we will see the following quarter finals:
The way the bracket has lined up means a repeat of last year’s final4 is perfectly possible. CUSB will have to beat either 3SB or Bristol to get there, though, and YAKA will most likely have to beat jinX. With the parity in this division throughout the season, however it shakes out it’s sure to be thrilling.
EUF has introduced MVP voting for the first time at this tournament, so if you’re watching along at home or taking part, you can vote for the most valuable player in your division (and all the others too) here.
A combination of several teams from the UK: SYC from London, SCRAM from Scotland and Spice from the midlands. ↩
YAKA vs. CUSB Shout. ↩