Rookie Recap – BAFA NL Week Six

First and foremost our goal here at DC is to grow the game!

However, to do so, Britball needs to find a way to tap into the UK’s vast and passionate sporting audience… sadly, most of which, don’t even realise Britball exists!

To that end, here’s a new trial series, aimed at giving newcomers to the #BritballNation the low down on what went down during the preceding weekend of Britball

If you’re new to the game, as a fan or a player, it can be a daunting prospect to try to get your head around the staggering number of results coming in during the heart of the summer seasons… DC’s here to try to demystify that for you!

So let’s jump right into it:

Rookie Recap – BAFA NL Week Six

So, what football happened this weekend?

While the Under 17s got a weekend off, the Women’s game returned to action so there was action across the entire weekend in Week Six!

  • The Diamond Series saw its first fixtures after a number of prep sessions, with the three regional teams squaring off for the first time – the Northern Blizzard, Heartlands Shock and Southern Blaze taking to the field.
  • While there’s still a lot of confusion due to a lack of a fully finalised schedule, the Under 19s saw two fixtures this weekend.
  • And the adult league had a stacked weekend, especially in the Premiership South where we saw all six teams in action for the second weekend in a row!

Ok, I want to find out about how my local team did!

  • First up, if you’re not sure who your local team is? You can find that out on our map. You can even filter it to only show your local full-contact Adult team – just open up the menu (top left) and untick all the options except ‘BAFA NL Adult League’ – et voila!
  • If you know which team you’re interested in, you can check out the weekend’s results either on our Facebook page, with a pinned post of all the scores, or search our Adult Results page where you could search for just your team, or a specific conference or week of the schedule!
  • Make sure you also check to see if your team has a website or social media of their own – like them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter.

Right, got it. I’ve checked up on my team, but now I want to know the important stuff that went on elsewhere!

You’ve got it!

Diamond Series

The Diamond Series represents the annual opportunity for ballers from all across the British Women’s game to try out the 11-a-side format of the game.

Designed to bridge the gap between the five- and seven-a-side formats of the game, and the 11-a-side National Programme, this year, the Diamond Series returns to its previous format, with the reintroduction of the Northern Blizzard and Southern Blaze, and the exponential growth of the women’s game leading to the debut of the Heartlands Shock.

In a trio of narrow fixtures, the Southern Blaze emerged on top in both of their fixtures, while the rookie Heartlands outfit looks to have fallen short on both occasions – though by only a score or less in each instance!

Finally, the Northern Blizzard started their day with a loss to the Blaze, though notably their fixture versus the Heartlands Shock had to be called slightly short due to an injury (the injured player was discharged later that evening and is expected to have a full recovery.).

Reportedly North HC, Connor Scholes, has offered to roll the remaining few minutes of the fixture over to the next meeting between the teams (the teams all showdown again on June 2nd!) so there’s still potential for this game to be concluded!

Heartlands Shock 8-15 Southern Blaze (FT)
Southern Blaze 12 – 6 Northern Blizzard (FT)
Heartlands Shock (12-14) Northern Blizzard (Suspended in Q4)

Under 19’s

The London Warriors impressed with a 20-6 win over the Cobham Cougars, the Warriors bouncing back from a tough loss earlier in their season against rivals, the London Blitz. While the Cougars are new to the U19’s game, they’d gotten off to a hot start in their first outing, but struggled against a tough Warriors side.

Meanwhile, in the North, the Merseyside Nighthawks took a nice 14-0 win over the Chester Romans.

However, many talented young ballers headed to the GB Lions first camp this Saturday.

Adult League
Premiership

The Tamworth Phoenix returned to domestic action, and despite their obvious struggles in their Northern European Football League fixtures, the Phoenix proved their still the cream of the crop in the Premiership North, putting in a dominant showing against the Merseyside Nighthawks – winning with a whopping 63-13 scoreline!

In a very hard-fought fixture, the Manchester Titans clung on to their lead to take a 16-14 win over the Edinburgh Wolves to continue to impress in their rookie season in the top tier!

Meanwhile, in the south we had disappointing news out of the Bury Saints as they were forced to forfeit their fixture versus the London Warriors.

Elsewhere, the London Blitz put in a dominant 53-9 showing in front of their Family Day double-header crowd, despite the Bristol Aztecs getting the first score of the day with an early scoop and score off a fumble!

It’s apparent the two big London sides are still a chunk above the rest of the Prem South, though the fans got a much more competitive fixture when the London Olympians and Farnham Knights squared off: In a back and forth game the Olympians eventually emerged on top thanks to a strong second half, taking a 30-20 win.

Division One

The weekend opened with the Sussex Thunder putting in a strong showing against the travelling Bristol Apache on Saturday evening – though positives for the promoted Bristol outfit were putting up their most points of the season so far and fending off a fifty burger for the first time this year.

Headlines from Div One include a resounding 46-0 win for the Leicester Falcons over the Shropshire Revolution – this Falcons side only seems to be getting stronger as the season goes on!  Elsewhere in that conference, a rampant second half from the Nottingham Caesars gave them a big win over the Coventry Jets.

While the southern half of the tier was most fairly one-sided games – including the Wembley Stallions impressing with a #50Burger performance against the East Kent Mavericks – there was a much closer fight in the NFC1North where the Glasgow Tigers took a single point win against a frustrated Gateshead Senators. So far this season the Senators have suffered two single point losses, as well as a tie in their opener against the Wolverines!

Division Two

The Norwich Devils took their first win since they returned to league action with a 37-0 pounding of the Pumas

The tough season continues for the Hastings Conquerors, who gave up another big scoreline, the Portsmouth Dreadnoughts dominating with a 64-0 victory.

And in another possible early Game of the Year contender, the Ipswich Cardinals eventually took a 54-48 victory in a back and forth shootout against the East Essex Sabres! Despite being 1-2 on their year so far, the Sabres currently top all of Division Two with 140 points scored on the season so far!

Also of note

It’s worth remembering at this point the risks involved in playing contact sports.

Alongside the game-ending injury in the Diamond Series, the Halton Spartans/Morecambe Bay Storm fixture was also called short due to a serious injury, with the player having to be airlifted from the field.

Image may contain: one or more people, grass and outdoor
Photography (c) Photos by Furfie, via Facebook.com

Thankfully, the player has since been given the all clear and hopes are they will make a full recovery.

And finally, we had the horrendous news out of the Cambridgeshire Cats, as one of their players collapsed at the Cats’ training session, following a heart attack.

Despite the best efforts of teammates and coaches, paramedics and the air ambulance, the player passed away later that day at Addenbrookes hospital.

#TeamDC’s thoughts go out to the player, his family and friends, as well as all at the Cambridgeshire Cats.

The British American Football Association are working closely with the Cats to support the programme through this tough situation, and the teams and individuals across the Britball community have reached out in support and shared-sadness for those impacted by this tragic event.

 


If you have any questions about the British game that you want answered? Don’t hesitate to get in touch!

Find us on Facebook and Twitter, or simply comment down below!

Alternatively, start a conversation with the Britball community by commenting on the Facebook post for this article.

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Nick

Nick 'Willy Tee' Wilson-Town hails from the South West where he's spent the last decade bouncing around various teams at the university and senior level. He came to fame on the now departed unofficial forum thanks to his regularly irreverent Uniball predictions and general 'BUAFL wafflage'. Follow him on twitter @WillyTee1