Super Series 3 Division 1 – Write Up
The last weekend in Feb was the last of three GBWR Super Series tournaments for Division 1. With final table positions on the cards there was a lot to play for. At the top battling for the championship and the bottom fighting to save themselves from relegation. The whole season has been a close one and the final Super Series didn't disappoint.
Both our teams had five players each, this meant a lot of pushing. Crusaders low pointers played every minute, three games on the Saturday and two on Sunday. For this super series they also had the return of Jim Roberts, a three pointer on the GBWR Elite squad. Previously out from injury it was a blessing to have him back. I was also with Crusaders for this tournament, together with Jim and the team, talking tactics and hopefully saving ourselves from relegation. Our second London team Storm had the current GB Captain Chris Ryan, leading their charge for the championship.
The Super Series tournaments start with two pools of four. This time our London teams were pooled separately, Cru pool A and Storm pool B. Each team would face up against the others in their pool, hence the three games on Saturday.
Crusaders first match was against the agile team of West Coast Crash, accurate passing would be a big factor in this match. When a team can recover so quick, the window of opportunity is always pretty small. For Cru, it would prove to be the closest match of the tournament. Tight all the way and pushing into overtime, a contact by Crash meant they had a man in the bin for the last try. So four on three gave Cru an easy last goal to secure the win 57-55. Our Storm had a less challenging first match up against Team Solent Sharks. The Storm charged ahead to a dominating twenty point lead winning 54-34.
The second pool game for Crusaders was against Leicester Tigers. We had a hi low line up and the Tigers favoured a line up with all players around the two point classification. Their passing was on point and they played with great chemistry. Tigers took an early lead and stretched it throughout the match, ending the score 38-53. Storm had another surge in their second pool game, beating Canterbury Hellfire 51-39.
Onto the third pool game and it was a dominating performance by both our teams. Crusaders battled the Gaelic Warriors and came out with 57-42 win. Across the pool and Storm went three for three and beat the DMP Bulls 56-30. All these results meant the crossover game on Sunday would be an all London affair.
As we all train together we normally have a good idea who's going to win a Cru v Storm game. But with our line-ups at this Super Series, there was uncertainty in the air. Along with some healthy competition, it turned out to be a close, awesome game of wheelchair rugby. It was an honour to see our players challenging each other. Everyone pushing to the limit and trying to get the upper hand while staying respectful. It was close all the way with a final goal difference of four in favour of Crusaders 48-44.
So now we're onto the last games and it was a re-match for both our teams. Storm we're up against Canterbury for 3rd/4th. It was a closer result than the last, but Storm got the job done again, this time with a narrow window of three winning 48-45. Congratulations to Storm on a well earned 3rd Place.
Crusaders we're in the final against Tigers, we lost the previous game but the players tipped off with their chins up. This time it was for 1st/2nd and again it was a closer one, but the result went the same way, Tigers won 54-46. So Cru rolled away with 2nd Place but more than achieved their goal of saving themselves from relegation. Nice work Crusaders!
Overall another amazing weekend of Wheelchair Rugby, some close matches to finish off a close season. Thank you to all involved, we always appreciate the opportunity to compete in this amazing sport. You'll be seeing both LondonWRC teams next season still in Division 1. For updates check out our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.