Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Up Next: Austrian Hat Tournament

Lots of good stories at Worlds, from Colombia, Japan and Mike O'Dowd and the Long List of Whores (previously just a legend that I heard from Rick Collins). I met Elroy Jetson from the Polish team Grandmaster Flash, i met Tushar Singh, got to talk to WFDF prez Potts for a bit, Tom and Sandie and Peri from USAU and of course the Five crew (note: World Champions in mini Mini are the team of me, Xtehn and Qxhna after spotting Lucas, Adam and Mike a 4-goal lead).

The Czech organizers did an amazing job in my opinion. My broadcast partner and GOP founder Bryn Perkins, Lucia, Carlos, Honza, Jana the TD, Bart, the Strizna TV crew -- i am still not sure how they managed two gigantic field complexes in two totally different locations but they did. The buses ran, the fields were all lined, the schedules were effective, the score keepers (did you see the stats?!) were nice and they took their jobs seriously. It sounds like a small thing but it made a big difference.

I heard the dormitory-style dorms were less than swank, but when your team signs up for the "dorm option" at a European tournament you should expect to be in a dorm. So hey, in this case they were Soviet-built. Welcome to Prague!

My next stop is the self-styled Styrian hat tournament in Southern Austria. I'd like to promise updated blogs about the 9 teams but its a camping tournament in a town called Kirchberh-am-Raab so I'm not really counting on wifi from the fields or anything. And thank god for that.

Thanks to everyone who complimented the broadcasts we did. It can't be said enough that the Strizna TV/webcast crew was ultra-professional and very much on the ball. I heard the cameramen and crew  came out to a Czech team scrimmage before Worlds to learn how to cover ultimate. It really shows -- they got the pulls, they followed the d's and nailed the instant replays. They were so good it was almost invisible -- but if you've watched the state of ultimate videos in the last, uh, 42 years you won't see anything like this.

It was always an unproven theory that ultimate would be exciting to watch if it was shot properly. Well, i think that theory was proven true. Again -- you can click on the links on the right to watch the videos. They will be up for some time, a month or so...

And finally a shout-out to my team O.L.D.S.A.G. aka One Last-Ditch Shot at Glory, Philadelphia masters. This may have truly been the team's last-ditch shot. With a thin squad of 20 that was whittled to 16 by the end, with four players added just for this tournament, and without a set offense or defense that you could identify, we beat seed and finished 5th. Disappointing perhaps that our 5-2 pool play record tied us with Munich (who we beat) and Helsinki (who we lost to) but lodged us in 4th because of point differential, thus sending us to quarters against Surly and an early exit from our attempt to return to Finals.... but hey, i think we left it on the field and can be proud.

That last sentence was poorly written but it's late at night and Styria is coming up. It just means more to come I reckon.