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4x4 - Week 3
Written by Lok Man Ho   
Wednesday, 08 September 2010

Match Reports

Game day 3 was again played in damp conditions on Tuesday evening. The first match up consisted of bottom of the ladder clash, The Hebrews against the White Elephants. Both teams played with only one sub, so it was a test of fitness as well as skill. The wet conditions led to a lot of handling errors from both sides. Shannon from The Hebrews made good inroads into the in-goal area of the Elephants, while the Adam and Flo's agility and speed put the Elephants on the scoreboard. In a closely contested match, The Hebrews ended up as 7-4 winners.

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The Hebrews Shannon Tau goes through the line

The second match lived up to its expectations as the 1st vs. 2nd match. The Fish's newest addition Patrick (as Bob's replacement) added some dynamics and combination in the centre, and both teams were moving the ball well around the field with touchdowns from accurate long passes. In a closely fought match of flowing touch rugby, The Mexicans narrowly beat The Fish 6-4 to become the solo leader on top of the league table.

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Lok Man Ho dives for the line for the White Elephants

After game day 3, every team has now played each other once and have an idea of each other's strengths and weaknesses. The standard of play and the understanding within each team has definitely lifted, and I look forward to seeing the matches in the next three weeks to see if there will be a change in the pecking order!

Scores

"The Hebrews" def. "White Elephants" 7-4
"The Mexicans" def. "The Fish" 6-4

Season Standings

Teamwindrawlosspointsforagainstdiff
1.The Mexicans3006267+19
2.The Fish20141915+4
3.The Hebrews10221018-8
4.White Elephants0030721-14

The table is also available online here: On Google Docs

Bembel Cup 2010
Written by Lok Man Ho   
Monday, 06 September 2010

Tournament Report

As of the last weekend, Roßdorf has probably the distinction of the smallest town to have ever hosted a touch tournament in Germany. The Bembel Cup, organised by TRC Frankfurt, took place on Saturday on a pitch next to the outdoor swimming pool in Roßdorf. This is the first time that the Touch Deutschland players have reconvened after the European Championships in July, with a lot of anticipation to see how much the level of the club level game has improved.

With a pitch that was just under 40 m wide and a full 70 m long, this was a field which suited Munich's hard driving and straight running style. The first match against Ruthen proved to be a demanding warmup. Munich had their typical slow start again and was lucky to have escaped with a couple of indiscretions in defence near their own scoreline in the opening minutes. Through good driving and handling mistakes by a somewhat depleted Rüthen team, we were able to spend a lot of time near the opposition scoreline, and soon the defence cracked under the pressure. The Munich Wolpertingers ran out 4-0 winners.

Munich is fielding arguably the least experienced middle lineup that the team has fielded for the last two years. The youngsters Flo, Max and Andi decided to grace us with their presence, and they were paired up with Lok Man, Nomis and Randy respectively. Defending in the middle is always a tough proposition, and they took to their new job admirably.

The match against Frankfurt will live on as a Munich classic. This is arguably Frankfurt's strongest team ever - Matt and Creedy were both playing. Other than being good at throwing dummy passes and organising their team, they also loved their interceptions. With both of them taking one intercept each and then Matt sneaking between the girls for another, Frankfurt went into the break very much in control with a 4-1 lead. Coach Ball told the team that we had played well, more of the same and the touchdowns will come. For several minutes it looked as if he would be made to eat his words, but then the barrage started. Back to 4-2 with a Munich touchdown. Then Max shook them with an intercept on the second touch on Frankfurt's own 5 m line. And with 30 seconds to go, Randy and Amanda burst through a tired defence to make it 4-4.

Berlin fielded a team without Rob and Jonno, but they were by no means a weak team in this tournament. The grudge match was dominated by Munich, who ran out as winners with 6-2. The narrower pitch proved to be no hinderance as the long passes found the wingers for some spectacular touchdowns. This was followed by a match against Heidelberg. Bob and Ian were donated by our team by our team to the green machines, and they were amongst the players who gave us the most trouble, guiding them to 3 touchdowns on the way to a 6-3 defeat. The match will, however, be remembered for what happened late in the first half. Heidelberg took an intercept, and after a long juggle, the ball was passed to the speedy Tina, who sprinted down the right wing. Randy took off from the left wing at breakneck speed, and touched Tina in the right corner as she was grounding the ball. Unfortunately for Randy, he could not stop in time to avoid the fence and hit a metal pole. He suffered cuts to his face and ended up looking like somebody who just lost a fight at the pub, but was OK after a trip to the hospital and ample stitches. We all wish Randy a speedy recovery.

For some reason Munich always seems to play Berlin twice in a tournament whenever that is possible. We always seem to win the first one, and then lose the second one in the finals. In this case, Berlin lifted their defensive game on their own line to hold Munich to only 2 touchdowns. Munich The match came down to two crucial decisions - the first was a touchdown scored by Berlin due to an incorrect offside call, and the second was a touch that was not acknowledged, which put Berlin into the lead. Munich was not without its chances in this armwrestle. The long balls were again threatening, and touchdowns were missed by a hair's width. In the end, the credit goes to Berlin with a much improved performance, which saw them run out 3-2 winners. This sealed the German championship 2010 for Berlin.

The 3rd place playoff against Heidelberg was won convincingly 8-1 by Munich. The historic moment of the day came when Frankfurt won their first ever tournament, defeating Berlin 3-1 in the final. It was a very close match which was wide open until Frankfurt sealed it with a touchdown in the closing minutes. Well played and congratulations to Frankfurt TRC. Hip Hip, Hurray!

Pool Results

Munich vs Ruethen – win 4 – 0
Munich vs Frankfurt – draw 4 – 4
Munich vs Berlin – win 6 -2
Munich vs Heidelberg – win 6 – 3

Semi-Final

Munich vs Berlin – loss 3 – 2

3rd – 4th Play-off

Munich vs Heidelberg – win 8 - 1

4x4 - Week 2
Written by Lok Man Ho   
Monday, 06 September 2010

Match Reports

Last Tuesday, The Mexicans took over the competition lead with another convincing 10-1 victory against the White Elephants. Their clinical execution was too much for the young White Elephants team, who weren't able to withstand the constant barrages of attack and looked a bit ragged under pressure. Kate Stout did a sterling job to play as the sole female player until Ani came to the rescue as a pool player half way through the second half. The other match was a touchdown fest at almost one per minute, with 18 touchdowns scored in the 20 minute match. The awesome attacking was also accompanied by some inexperienced defending which contribute somewhat to the scoreline, but it was a spectacular match to watch and ref. There had to be a winner in the end, and The Fish came out on top with 11-7.

Scores

"The Mexicans" def. "White Elephants" 10-1
"The Fish" def. "The Hebrews" 11-7

Season Standings

Teamwindrawlosspointsforagainstdiff
1.The Mexicans2004203+17
2.The Fish2004159+6
3.White Elephants0020314-11
4.The Hebrews00209-21-12

The table is also available online here: On Google Docs

4x4 League Update
Written by Lok Man Ho   
Wednesday, 01 September 2010

Match Reports

The season kicked off with a black and white match up - the old experienced hands of "The Fish" (black uniform) against the young, mostly student lineup of "White Elephants" (white uniform). I can't speak for the first half as I wasn't there, but it was 2-1 to "The Fish" shortly after half time. It looked like a close match in the wet conditions where handling was difficult and massive puddles provided entertainment as players (one being Max) dived to score. In the end, experience and a bit of youth won the day, and "The Fish" were victorious with 4-2.

The second match was the battle of falsified nationalities, "The Hebrews" vs. "The Mexicans". Most of "The Hebrews" were actually missing, but managed to field 5 players with Keith Ball leading the charge. "The Mexicans" were a star-studded side (even with missing players) that only recruited national players. This resulted in a rather one-sided affair as "The Mexicans" cruised to victory with 10-2 at full time. "The Hebrews" were not without their chances and took a couple with individual brilliance, but the constant pressure by the slick and fast play of "The Mexicans" was just too much to resist.

Scores

"The Fish" def. "White Elephants" 4-2
"The Mexicans" def. "The Hebrews" 10-2

Season Standings

Teamwindrawlosspointsforagainstdiff
1.The Mexicans1002102+8
2.The Fish100242+2
3.White Elephants00102-4-2
4.The Hebrews00102-10-8
Touch Muenchen at the Euros
Written by Robert Kalman   
Wednesday, 01 September 2010

The European championships took place in Bristol at the end of July this year. The tournament is a 4 day event, open to international teams from around Europe and included invitational teams from around the world. For many German players this was the culmination of several months of intense training and fitness work and we believe it paid off in the end.

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Touch Deutschland with the New Zealand Academy

Munich Representations!

Touch Muenchen are proud to so many of the German national team made up of Touch Muenchen players. From the men’s team the following players were from Munich: Keith Ball, Bob Kalman, Simon Chenery, Jonathan Mullender, Patrick Chambers, Duncan Binger, Keith Baxter and the captain Andrew Strachan.

From the women’s team: Amanda Currie, Ani Piringer, Kate McRae and Susi Baxter-Seitz
And from the mixed team: Regi Rückerl, Kat Schütte, Katrina Murray, Randy Iskakov and the captain Lok Man Ho

This meant that over forty-five percent of the German national team was made up of players from Touch Muenchen.

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Men's Over 30s Team

Results at the tournament

The ladies team has in the past been the most successful of the German teams. And they didn’t disappoint again this year. In both 2006 and 2008 they managed to finish in 4th position and again in 2010 the German ladies equalled their previous performance with another 4th position overall. The ladies found themselves under a lot of pressure in their first game against the eventual winners, England, losing 13-0 but rallied back well to finish the 2nd day with a solid position and a playoff game against the Scottish team to decide their participation in the finals. The game was a tight one and went down to a drop off. The drop off went all the way to 3 on 3 and was eventually decided with controversial Scottish try to put the ladies in 4th.

The men’s team got off to a shaky start too, and received a lesson in the art of touch from the French team. But soon found their stride with wins over the Swiss, Guernsey and Spain. The men’s team narrowly missed out on a place in the semi finals with 5-4 loss to Scotland. This put them in 5th place overall in the tournament. The Munich based national men’s coach Keith Ball said after the tournament “With two ACL injuries, one broken leg and visa problems leaving the German team somewhat depleted we put on a marvellous show. The guys continued to improve throughout the tournament and certainly surprised a few of the teams out there this weekend!”

Not only was it a successful weekend for the men’s and women’s teams but the mixed team faired well too. The mixed team had previously been the least successful of the German teams. However, in 2010 decisions were made to spread the talent equally through the mixed and single-sex teams and therefore strengthen the mixed team. In a notoriously difficult group, the mixed team struggled to hold their defence. On the attacking side though, no team could stop the Ho- Iskakov duo from scoring which helped keep the games close. The mixed team eventually won the first game in the history of mixed German competition, with a win against Italy on the final day. Munich-based captain Lok Man Ho said of his team “I couldn’t be more proud of the team. We were playing in a level above what we see in Germany but the team did extremely well. We also showed that German touch has come a long way over the past years and is now able to really compete.”

Other successes.

After the tournament was complete, the New Zealand academy asked Germany to a friendly game. This meant that the three teams could pool their resources to play against the current world champions. The result was to be honest already decided as these guys had only conceded two or three tries in the whole tournament thus far. However Germany took an early lead scoring off the opening drive and defending well to hold a 1-0 lead for a good part of the first half. This put Germany in the very happy position of being the only European team to have ever led against New Zealand.

It was not just on the field that the team was successful but also at the prize giving afterwards. Bob Kalman asked Amanda Currie to marry him at the ceremony which capped off a wonderful weekend of Touch.

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Amanda suprisingly says yes to Scrappy Doo
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