Two weekends ago the Fijian Flippers (aka Darmstadt‘s semi-unprofessional Rugby 7s team) headed down to the Kiliani 7s tournament. Wanting to make sure the boys were well rested and prepared for the tournament day, the team headed down on Friday night to Würzburg. After quickly erecting the tents, the boys changed into their traditional Fijian outfits and flower necklaces and the Flippers kicked off the pre-tournament preparation with some mimosas. Following several more cocktails and a number of games of shark attack, the Flippers faced their first „match“ of the tournament, being challenged by campsite neighbours Bad Reichenhall to a game of flunky ball. The Flippers promptly demolished Bad Reichenhall at Flunkyball, however the victory came at a high cost, as Bert‘s carrot was stolen and eaten by the Reichenhall women’s captain. Keen to make sure the team was well hydrated before the tournament, Philip (naturally) led the Flippers to a local watering hole for some refreshments. After much dancing, drinking, singing and more drinking, Simon selected himself as tour captain in the usual manner. After being dropped off by some taxis and a random local, the heavens began to open as the boys dashed to the tents, leaving Claas to crutch his way back in the rain.
On Saturday morning the boys awoke early and (not) well refreshed. Luckily Philip had prepared some ice cold Radlers for breakfast, so with a full stomach, the boys set about preparing for the first match against Bad Reichenhall with some more beers. With an unconventional 7s squad consisting of 4 front rowers and Andi, the Darmstadt team didn‘t look most of the other teams. However this seemed to be effective as the Flippers won 19-7. PvH then informed us that we had a two hour break before the next game, so you can imagine that the boys were thrilled when half an hour later the announcer on the loud speaker told us we were to play tournament favourites Black Mambas in 5 minutes. After hurriedly finishing our beers (and a quick vomit for Henry) Darmstadt took to the field. The Mambas were fast and fit, boasting a number of Bundesliga players. After conceding a quick try to this pace, the Flippers hit back through a quick tap penalty and smash through to the line from Henry. The Mambas again used their pace to score another but Franz hit back with another powerful run to score. The game was a hard fought contest, and the Flippers just missed out losing 12-14. the Flippers then beat Gießen to finish 2nd in the group, putting them against Würzburg in the semis.
This game was the Flippers finest hour. A youthful and confident Würzburg Team quickly scored two tries after identifying mismatches in our forwards heavy team. However, the Flippers used that muscle to their advantage, dominating the contact area and countering with two tries of our own. Franz and Andi then decided that we needed even fewer backs on the pitch, taking consecutive stints in the sin bin for yellow card offences. This only spurred the Flippers on more, who scored twice despite being down on numbers. To rub salt in the wounds, Ernesto ran the length of the pitch past all the Würzburg fans with their pyro to score in the corner. No one can really remember the final score but it was a clear victory to the Flippers. This meant that, once again, the Flippers faced the Mambas in the final. The Darmstadt squad was at this point running thin due to injuries and excessive alcohol consumption. With a couple of Pirates on the bench, the Flippers ran out to a guard of honour from Bad Reichenhall to face the Mambas. Once again, after conceding two quick tries, the Flippers were down. However the boys rallied and replied with two of our own. Unfortunately the day drinking started to take its toll as the fitter and more organised Mambas scored two more in the second half. The Fijian Flippers may have lost 22-10 in the final, but they captured the hearts of all those at the tournament and demonstrated what Rugby really, truly, is all about – a great day out with your mates.
Thanks to Würzburger Rugby Klub 2012 e.V. for a superbly run tournament and great post-match entertainment. Thanks to all the fellow players and tournament fans who took part in our weird drinking games and made the weekend thoroughly enjoyable. And finally thanks to all the Flippers, both players and the injured (RIP Frederika), for a most memorable 7s tour. Wir sagen Dankeschön!
Tour Captain – Simon „leer“ Lehr
Player of the tournament – Claas „wankle“ Baustian
D*ck of the tournament – Patrick „ball-crusher“ van Halem