vir non camelus est.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Round 4: BF v The Disgraced

Entering a crucial Round 4 encounter with novel/traditional rivals "The Disgraced" with a win-bye-tie record, the mighty Black Fish were desperate to maintain their unbeaten record for the season.

A cautious Fish team eased out to a gentle start, allowing the scorer to obtain some quality video footage without being otherwise troubled, while also familiarising themselves with their opponents. Only one Disgrace was familiar to the Fish, former Lobetrotter 'Carrot' who fell victim to the Black Fish way back in Round 5, Winter 2006, in a performance characterised by flashy incompetence, unreasonable outbursts, a hefty girth, and a stunning second-half fade-out. In a moment of cosmic symmetry pleasing to all (except the vegetable himself), his performance for the Disgraced was eerily similar.

The capacity crowd is likely to remember little of this peculiar match but the umpiring. Zebra-striped, festering-skin-lesion-afflicted obstructive-sleep-apnoea-boy and his inconsequential side-kick embarrassed themselves with an insipid display of tiggy-touchwood officiating that was sufficiently irritating to require your correspondent to resort to use of the phrase 'tiggy-touchwood' for the very first (and second) time. Most annoying. Even the Dalai Lamaesque, peace-loving BF00 found himself with four fouls at the half-time adjournment.

Having built a one-point half-time lead, the Black Fish again demonstrated their class by systematically deconstructing their opposition in the second half.

Rodgers (N) was a dominant force, jumping to a clear lead in the race for the season's top scorer. He continued to develop his telepathic relationship with his tall-timber partner in crime, Noutz, who not only commanded the boards, but also demonstrated some slick inside passing, adding another string to his rapidly expanding bow. Edwards was a constant offensive threat before a limp and premature exit at the hands of the officials. Nissen and Whittle completed the quality quintet with solid four-quarter performances interspersed with the usual flashes of brilliance.

By the end, it was a procession. A faultless second half saw the Fish win 29-13.

One can feel the excitement building within the Black Fish community in response to a best-ever start to a MARS season by the Fish. Don't miss this week's massive "Battle o' the Seven Seas" grudge match between The Mighty Black Fish and league minnows, King George Whiting.

In the immortal words of Wesley Snipes.....always bet on black.

P.S. Many BF fans have commented on the team's propensity to slow starts and torrential second-half scorefests. A quick statistical analysis of this season's games does not support this impression. While the Fish have scored a mean of 6.3 more points in second halves compared with first halves, this difference is not statistically significant (Wilcoxon p=0.29). The 95% confidence interval for the 2nd half vs 1st half differential is currently -11.1 to 23.8 points. Undoubtedly the statistically-minded amongst you will watch with interest as an increase in the sample over the course of the season narrows this confidence interval.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Winter Season Stats

Despite missing the finals, the Winter 2006 season stats contain some encouraging signs for this young band of brothers:

Win:Loss = 13:10

Total Points For = 739
Total Points Against = 627
Season Percentage = 117.86%

Average Winning Margin = 19.6 points
Average Losing Margin = 14.3 points

Biggest Winning Margin = 41 points (round 17)
Biggest Losing Margin = 44 points (round 21)

Average Score in Wins = 38.5 points
Average Score in Losses = 23.8 points
Highest Score = 61 points (round 15)
Lowest Score = 13 points (round 18)

Longest Winning Streak = 5 games (round 13-17)
Longest Losing Streak = 4 games (round 18-21)

Comments and insights are welcome.

Monday, October 9, 2006

New Features

The Black Fish Blog is bigger and better this season - expect to see more sublimely-crafted and impartial match reports, awe-inspiring highlights reels, stunning action photography, and many more hilarious links (hopefully fewer naked men jumping around holding Suresh signs).

But that's not all...

Several new features will appear this season in order to enhance your enjoyment of the Black Fish experience.

The first such feature, an up-to-the-minute stats sheet featuring every player on the current BF player list has now gone live and may be accessed here or via the links.

Look out for further exciting features in coming weeks.

And don't forget to check out the complete 2006/7 fixtures list.

See you at MARS.

Sunday, October 8, 2006

Round 3: BF v Homebrand

Entering Round 3 with a flawless undefeated record, the Black Fish looked full of confidence as they strode onto a typically dimly-lit Court 2 for the vital clash with traditional rivals Homobrand. The humbling experience of Round 19, Winter Season 2006, was but a distant memory as the Fish welcomed back club stalwarts Nissen and Downing for their first game of the season, relegating an unlucky Ang to an early Ben Hart-style retirement.

Despite the eerily-loud cheers from the massive courtside contingent of one (Ly), and the uncommon luxury of a substitute, the Fish eased themselves out to a slow and imprecise start. The usual laser-guided precision passing was strangely absent, allowing the lumbering Homobrands to steal an early lead. The fearful gasps from the cheersquad at the prospect of another humiliation at the hands of Homobrand would have been deafening had the crowd been several thousand times larger.

The fine men of the Black Fish, however, are so in tune with their supporters' emotions that even the relatively inaudible groans of disappointment cut deeply into their large (and for some, transiently segmentally-dyskinetic) hearts. Was there any doubt that the lads would respond? No, sir. And so, with a novel combination of dash, pluck, ill-conceived passes, strong rebounding, awkward fouls and a sprinkle of that old Black Fish magic, our boys closed to within a point at the half.

Few who had witnessed the first half would have expected the second half to be pretty. And it wasn't.

But it was tense, sweaty, hard fought, and - in the end - one of the most exciting matches of he season. On several occasions during the half it appeared that the Fish may have been swept aside, and indeed a lesser side may have capitulated, but they kept hanging on, confident in their freakish ball-handling skills.

As expected, all six Fish played well: Nissen channeled the emotion of a tumultuous day into a fearsome defensive intensity, Noutz controlled the defensive boards and entertained the crowd with a trick shot off the backboard supports, Whittle ran up and down doing the same old thing he usually does, Rodgers played a typically strong game in the key at both ends of the court, scoring in excess of half of the team's final score, relative newcomer Downing patrolled the mid-court to an extent rarely seen at this level, and it was again Edwards who led from the front with a strong display of piercing drives and sweet outside shooting.

In the frenetic final few minutes of the match both sides missed golden opportunities to score the winning points, but in the dying seconds a dubious foul allowed the Homobrands a chance to break the deadlock with a pair of free-throws ater the full-time siren. Unable to muster a Hoosiers-style fairytale shot, the Homobrand in question Motlopped both shots. The final result? A heart-stopping 21-21 draw.

While a disappointing result for the Fish, they remain undefeated this season and look forward with growing confidence to the Round 4 clash with traditional rivals (and league newcomers) The Disgraced.

Round 2: BYE

The Black Fish engaged in a marathon 12 hour training session in lieu of the Round 2 match.*

*may not be accurate

Round 1: BF v Air Supreme

Summer season 2006/7 kicked off in grand style with the much-anticipated grudge match between mortal enemies The Black Fish and Air 'Supreme'.

Most basketball aficionados already recognise that Air Supreme are a pack of indescribable wankers, but if there were any doubters out there, this game served to prove the point entirely. Still suffering at the hands of injury, the Black Fish recruited Western Australian surprise packet Eugene Ang for his first game in the hallowed black strip. The Black Fish found it difficult to develop their rhythm early in the game and to the surprise of the large courtside contingent the Supremes shot out to an early lead.

The bizarre pack of simian halflings that comprised the hilariously large support group for Air Supreme again demonstrated their true class and sportsmanship by cheering loudly for any Black Fish mistake (rare as they might be). Thanks largely to their sad efforts the Fish redoubled their efforts and recovered the lead as the first half drew to a close; simultaneously, tensions began to rise in the steamy atmosphere of court three, culminating in one of the more gutless efforts ever seen at MARS Stadium. Michael Chang, in his brief on-court appearance, took out all the years of frustration at having diminutive genitalia on an unsuspecting BF00, slugging him in the proboscis with a back fist behind play. The half-witted referee then performed the archetype of panicky umpiring in calling a technical foul on BF00 for no apparent reason at all. Little man Chang then took himself and his little beard to the bench where he hid for the remainder of the game.

As you all know by now, this is when the Black Fish are at their very best. The second half was simply a rout as an organised and methodical Black Fish outfit destroyed their hapless rivals. From early in the first half it was clear to all those present that the Fish were going to romp away with a large victory. It was at this stage that the Black Fish players were able to entertain themselves by torturing the fragile psyches of their little opponents. Several psychotic episodes ensued despite a surprising lack of toe-treading and other behaviours recognised throughout the league as invariably inducing crazed behaviour in anyone wearing an Air Supreme uniform.

In the end it was an easy 41-27 victory to the mighty mighty Black Fish. All five Fish were outstanding, including first-gamer Ang who proved that Western Australians have skills other than running from RBTs. The Air Supreme support group, strangely quiet in the second half as their little men were humiliated, trudged off into the cool Marden night, back to their pathetic little lives.

For the Black Fish it was a magnificent start to their summer season campaign and the first step on the path to finals glory.

Fixtures 2006/7

Round 1 (21/9/06) BF v Air Supreme 6:00pm
Round 2 (28/9/06) BYE
Round 3 (5/10/06) BF v Homebrand 9:45pm
Round 4 (12/10/06) BF v The Disgraced 9:00pm
Round 5 (19/10/06) BF v King George Whiting 10:30pm
Round 6 (26/10/06) BF v Red Dwarfs 8:15pm
Round 7 (2/11/06) BF v Aussie Bruddhas 7:30pm
Round 8 (9/11/06) BF v Spectrum 8:15pm
Round 9 (16/11/06) BF v Metal Slug 7:30pm
Round 10 (23/11/06) BF v Air Supreme 10:30pm
Round 11 (30/11/06) BYE
Round 12 (7/12/06) BF v Homebrand 10:30pm
Round 13 (14/12/06) BF v The Disgraced 7:30pm
Round 14 (4/01/07) BF v King George Whiting 9:00pm
Round 15 (11/01/07) BF v Red Dwarfs 9:45pm
Round 16 (18/01/07) BF v Aussie Bruddhas 6:00pm
Round 17 (25/01/07) BF v Spectrum 9:00pm
Round 18 (1/02/07) BF v Metal Slug 9:00pm
Round 19 (8/02/07) BF v Air Supreme 6:45pm
Round 20 (15/02/07) BYE
Round 21 (22/02/07) BF v Homebrand 6:45pm
Round 22 (1/03/07) BF v The Disgraced 9:00pm
Round 23 (8/03/07) BF v King George Whiting 6:00pm
Round 24 (15/03/07) BF v Red Dwarfs 9:45pm
Semi-Finals 22/3/07
Grand Final 29/3/07

Summer Season 2006/7

Welcome all to the new season. The Black Fish are back and they're hungry for glory after narrowly missing the finals last season. Log on this season for even more incisive match reports, multimedia highlights, injury reports, and a few new features.....

Round 25

With no mathematical chance of playing in the finals the Black Fish entered the final minor round game against league heavyweights, The Fakers, with only pride at stake. And that is when the Fish are at their best.

Words are insufficient to describe the skill and courage displayed by this magnificent team in every breathtaking moment of this clash. And so there will be no description of the match.

Also, it was about six weeks ago so I've forgotten most of what happened.

But those who were there witnessed a display of steely defensive intensity, creative offensive opportunism, and uncommon passing precision that left the eventual league premiers utterly destroyed.

History records a magnificent 26-21 victory. Truly a fine end to our stunning comeback season.

Admittedly, an even better end would have been to have qualified for the finals, but that is perhaps to miss the point - the point, my friends, is that the Black Fish are back, and they're here to stay. And with just the right degree of haughty pride, the fine men of the Black Fish chose not to contest the repercharge finals, leaving the small-penis brigade and future 'fifteen' chefs to scrabble amongst themselves for the minor honours.

For the Fish are already looking ahead to the summer season, in what promises to be a breakthrough period for this club. Dear supporters, look forward to a season of great victories, awe-inspiring highlights, and the return of some club stalwarts - all to be recorded on the ever-expanding website.

And so concludes Winter Season 2006. If we have learned but one thing this season, it is that vir non camelus est.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Round 24

With a mathematical chance of making the finals still alive, the Fish reacted to their recent run of injuries by manufacturing a stunning recruiting coup. To the disbelief of many in the media, this humble (but mighty) basketball club managed to recruit Crows champions Mark Ricciuto, Ben Hart and Trent Hentschel for their critical Round 24 clash with the Aussie Bruddhas.

And so it was that the Fish fielded four players for the match.

Whittle, Edwards, a serene 'Garden of Eden' Noutz (finally rid of that pesky Adam), and star recruit Randall "Ernieand" Birt strode confidently onto court 2 despite their numerical disadvantage. The Bruddhas, of course, continued to grapple with their numeracy disadvantage, amongst other evident handicaps.

But of all the dud cards dealt to the Bruddhas by their maker (and indeed several of their boys have the Royal Flush), lack of enthusiasm is not amongst them. And so it was that the game began at a typically frenetic pace (with typically few successful scoring shots from either side). Deep into the first half the scores were level and a few beads of sweat were beginning to appear on the furrowed brows of a brave but outnumbered Fish outfit.

When the Noutz juggernaut came crashing to a halt courtesy of a sickening finger injury (described by John Reid as 'more like a car accident injury than an E-grade basketball injury'), things began to look grim, but those of you with enough idle time on your hands to have read all 23 of the previous (and increasingly long-winded and subordinate clause-laden) match reports do not need me to remind them that that this is exactly when the Black Fish dig deep.

And so they did.

It was all quality in the second half from all four players as the Fish inexorably drew away from their cytogenetically-challenged rivals. By the end, it was simply showtime. Whittle failed to complete multiple behind-the-back passes as he and Edwards competed for the Black Fish match assists record. Birt went one better by interrupting several plays for a quick spew before rushing back on the court to make the shot, drool and carrots trailing in his wake.

In the end, it was an embarrassment-avoiding 34-16 victory for the Fish. Job done.

And now for the final match of the minor round. The biggest game of the year. The final showdown with the Fakers. Destiny awaits.

Do not miss it.

Round 23

After his goodwill tour of Europe and Asia, BF00 returned to find his beloved Black Fish in disarray - reeling from a couple of thumping defeats, ravaged by injury, and facing the prospect of missing the finals. Wishing briefly that he could face such adversity with the same stoic indifference as Neil Craig, BF00 strode onto the dimly-lit court three with only one thought in mind: try to start a fight with those Air Supremes.

And so began the most awaited Marden Round 23 Court 3 grudge match in living memory. Buoyed by a massive crowd of Ly, Billing and Caroline (in her much lamented swansong), six Fish were available for the first time in months.

Any expectations of a toe-stepping, oversized-singlet-grabbing, brain-explosion-inducing niggle-fest evaporated in a tense first five minutes of tight, quality basketball. As the Fish found it increasingly difficult to penetrate the offensive key, the possibility of a boilover began to hang heavily over the Black Fish bench.

(Warning: ridiculous metaphors ahead)

But, as any Black Fish afficionado would know (and I know you're out there), such situations are the fertile soil from which Black Fish spirit sprouts so magnificently, like sturdy vines from Alex's beloved terra rossa, ready to bombard the opposition with quality long bombs like so many glorious cabernet grapes. And from that point on the hapless Supremes were no more than pathetically ineffective phylloxera species perishing in the face of the pesticide that is the Fish's impenetrable zone defence and sharp-passing offence.

It was textbook Black Fish match strategy: Solid inside work from Rodgers and Vasilunas, slightly crazed full-court intensity from Noutz, slick passing and annoyingly effective defence from Nissen, graceful offensive manoevering from Edwards, and destructive long-bombing from 'Hamas' Whittle.

The Supremes, as is their way, reacted to their imminent humiliating defeat by resorting to ill-considered and unimpressive acts of violence. Michael Chang, one of The Supremes' fabled insane duo, was particularly noisome. Regretfully the collision which resulted in an injust double technical foul resulted in no visible injury to the little pest. Many in the crowd will look forward to a re-match next season.

In the end, it was a moral victory for the Fish as they cantered to a 43-28 thumping of their little foes.

And in summary:

1. BF still in the hunt for the finals.

2. Air Supreme take it up the arse, doo-dah.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Black Fish Go Global

BF00 leaves on a goodwill tour of Europe and Asia this week, aiming to spread the Black Fish message to a wider audience.

So look forward to a variety of guest correspondents over the next three rounds, and maybe some notes from the road.

After all, the whole world knows that vir non camelus est.

Round 19

There have been few games more important in the history of this magnificent club than the return stoush with traditional rivals (and BF bunnies) Homobrand.

The importance of the game is illustrated by the overdue return from the twos of starting centre Rodgers (N), and by the capacity crowd packing the creaking grandstands of Court 3, including newly-recruited scorer Rodgers (S) (pictured below), who is certain to be drafted by the Fish under the Father-Son rule in a few short years.

And Edwards, to the clear detriment of colons throughout our delightful southern suburbs, forsook his ailing clients to drive (no doubt erratically) at breakneck speed back to the safer streets north of the city in order to make it on court mid-way through the first half. Six Black Fish, for the first time in months.

And then, to top it all off, in strides the heroically injured favourite son Rodgers (A), in his first appearance courtside since the unforeseen Achilles-like season-ending injury of Round 9. Fortunately, unlike Achilles, Rodgers (A) has not spent his recovery time engaging in homo-erotic 'physiotherapy' with his attractive male cousin (as far as can be established).

So, to the game...

Terrified by the prospect of another loss to the might of the Black Fish, Homobrand finally eased their trembling limbs onto the court at about the five minute mark of the first half. As expected, the first stanza was a closely-fought affair. Inspired by the rare conjunction of three Rodgerses and the loud cries of "Go Goldfish" from the scorers' bench, the Fish held their own valiantly against a quality Homobrand line-up.

The second half, unfortunately, was a disappointment for the legion of Fish fans. Although they fought strongly to the end, the Black Fish were unable to maintain the full-court intensity required to hurt the minor premiership contenders. An outstanding game by Vasilunas, who dominates this week's highlights reel, was not enough to prevent a 28-43 loss.

With only six weeks to go until the finals, each game is now crucial in the race to make the top four. Faced with a crunch match in Round 20 against Spectrum, the Fish will turn to their secret weapon - Downing (K) - in a stunning selection ploy. This game is not to be missed, as it is certain to be a modern classic.

Round 18

Round 18 saw a depleted Fish line-up tackle perennial nemeses The Fakers on Court 2. Brimming with confidence after stringing together five consecutive wins for the first time this season, the mighty Black Fish were confident of an upset victory as the testosterone-riddled quintet of Whittle, Edwards, Nissen, Noutz and Vasilunas strode ferociously onto the pine.

The match started at a hectic pace as the defensive intensity of both sides ensured that this would be an epic arm-wrestle. The Fish maintained a fierce focus but struggled to cope effectively with The Fakers' cunning numerical mismatch strategy, particularly at the offensive end. It is perhaps a testament to the character inherent in this club that the boys dug deep to avoid the humiliation of a first-ever scoreless half, eventually securing their solitary bucket with fewer than 90 seconds on the clock.

Half-time was an opportunity to regroup. One could sense that all five players (and the magnificently ubiquitous Hoang and Caroline) were thinking to themselves 'what would Neil Craig do?'. And sure enough, the second half was all about process. The boys began to take care of the little things, and the big things - inevitably - took care of themselves.

By the ten-minute mark of the second half, the game was on the line. The Fish were back. The Fakers were rattled. The fans were delirious. The referees were shithouse.

A panicky time-out by the Fakers saw them to revert to their peculiar 4-on-5 formation in an attempt to negate the irresistible scoring potential of the glorious Black Fish. Eventually, however, The Fakers' negative brand of tempo basketball may have driven away the fans, but saw them secure a tight 13-20 victory over the Fish.

Basketball pundits cannot fail to be impressed by the character shown by the Fish in the second half, out-scoring their more fancied opponents despite the blatant negating tactics. One may rest assured that a potential finals clash between these two sides would be welcomed by an ever-improving Black Fish side that might just fancy its chances in a re-match.

But for now, the business of qualifying for the finals is becoming very serious indeed. Five evenly-matched teams are battling it out for the top four in what promises to be an epic conclusion to the minor round. Don't miss it!

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Round 18 Highlights

The Round 18 report is still being crafted. In the meantime, watch the highlights.....

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Round 17

The late night Court 3 supermatch between the Mighty Black Fish and the Less-than-mighty Aussie Bruddhas attracted spectators from as far afield as France. Understandably, the entire population of France has recently switched their attention from the curious head-butting underperformance of Les Bleus to the far more skillful game of basketball, Marden-style.

And in a performance which sent shivers down the spine of the Australian spectators, the MARS referees managed to surpass Graham Poll in the atrocity of their performance. Unlike the Englishman, who retained the last fragments of his credibility by retiring immediately, the MARS crew remain to referee another day.

Unfortunately for Les Fleurys, the game was far from spectacular. Faced with an opposition replete with a cast of genetically-disadvantaged, Dora Maar-faced, dermatologically-nauseating, cortex-deficient freaks reminiscent of a Victorian-era travelling show, the Fish were - in a sense - in a no-win situation. In another, more accurate sense, the Fish were in a win situation.

And win they did. After a slow start, in which they were lulled into a false sense of absolute dominance, the Whittle-Edwards-Vasilunas-Nissen-Noutz highlight reel began. All five Fish produced a complete performance in both offense and defence, and all contributed on the scoreboard. Nissen, in particular, impressed the in-laws with some sweet Magic Johnson-style assists, with none of the rather less pleasant Magic Johnson-style CD4 deficiency.

Cruelly abandoned by their wives, the Black Fish scoring bench was again salvaged in fine style by the spectacularly committed Caroline, whose unflagging cheerleading will no doubt soon see her in the BF Cheer Squad Hall of Fame, if not actually taking to the court.

By late in the second half the game had degenerated from a circus freak show to simply a circus. In a measure of the complete dominance of the Fish, the referees simply gave up. Fortunately BF11, the imposing Noutz (C), adapted to the spirit of on-court anarchy in true BF style, crashing through a Bruddha less than half his size in a near lethal full-body collision. Sadly for all present, the clash resulted in no serious injuries.

In a percentage-boosting performance, the Black Fish eventually ran out winners 51-10, extending the winning streak to five games. The video highlights are so pathetically one-sided that none will be shown for this round.

Having successfully negotiated a potential danger game, this proud club turns its attention to a pivotal encounter with league leaders, perpetual nemeses, and traditional rivals the Fakers.

Sunday, July 9, 2006

Round 16

Rumours began to fly around the MARS community as the Mighty Black Fish took to the pine for their crucial Round 16 clash with traditional rivals Air 'Supreme'. There had been weeks of speculation regarding the playing future of out-of-contract superstar 'Walls' Downing as it became increasingly apparent that he was eyeing a return to active competition. Many insiders were aware that he was close to some members of the Fish playing group but few would have guessed that he was on the verge of signing with the injury-ravaged league pacesetters until he strode into MARS stadium and took his place alongside the Black Fish cheersquad. Unfortunately for his legion of devoted supporters he did not don the playing togs on this occasion, choosing to provide his distinctive brand of vocal support, but one must surely anticipate his imminent appearance in the Black Fish side.

Buoyed, but not distracted, by the commotion courtside, this week's Five Fit Fish - Whittle, Edwards, Nissen, Noutz and Rodgers (N) - leapt out of the blocks against their jewellery-clad foes. Few could forget the spiteful nature of the previous clash between these two sides, but who could have predicted the fiery encounter which developed in the late-night cold of Court 1?

The result was never in doubt. Well-drilled, committed, sublimely skilled and devastatingly handsome, the Fish asserted their dominance on the scoreboard from the outset. The defensive effort in particular was a highlight, squeezing the life from the little 'Supremes'.

And then the game exploded into life.

Big Carl Noutz, in characteristic fashion, put his body on the line in a contest for a loose ball with 1989 French Open tennis champion Michael Chang, who surprised many by wearing his tennis outfit throughout the game. There was little surprise (but several chuckles) when Chang's semi-conscious body flew across the court, limbs comically flailing, as Noutz stood still as a statue. But there was plenty of surprise when Chang, no doubt filled with rage at his disappointing and under-achieving career after winning the French Open at the age of 17, leapt to his feet and began ranting maniacally about several improbable outcomes, including taking a swing at the amused Noutz, whose scone he would have required a step-ladder (and a boost from his buddies) in order to reach with one of his diminutive fists.

A technical foul and plenty of laughs followed, while Chang retreated to the bench, rummaging desperately in his bag for a racquet to smash. Many of those present thought that the violence was over. But 'Supreme's' resident DSM manual, 'Legs' 11, had other ideas...

Early in the second half, the quality niggling of Rodgers (N) finally broke his fragile psyche. Words really cannot capture what ensued over the next few minutes. Even a request from your correspondent for a brief first-hand description of events from those at the stadium elicited only one response, from the curiously absent 'Clark Kent' Edwards. It is probably fair to say that the entire history of the human race has never before seen such a response to having one's foot accidentally stepped upon.

One tends to recall brief snapshots of the event, filtered as it was through a strong sense of disbelief, and partially obscured by tears of laughter. It is rare that any of us has the opportunity to witness the complete and sudden decomposition of a man's psychological health - in many ways, we were privileged to be present, for this was an experience the likes of which one relates to one's grandchildren.

In the end, a good 10 minutes of game time was stolen from the Fish, but it was worth it. Much like living through a cyclone, players from both sides could do nothing but watch with a mixture of horror and fascination, and wait for it to be over before assessing the damage. After numerous technical fouls, an ejection from the game, several direct threats to the health and wellbeing of the referee, some comic waving of stick-thin limbs in a poor imitation of physical intimidation, and a retraction of the rejection by a tired referee who could feel the hot breath of Sudden Cardiac Death on the back of his neck, it was over.

And, professional to the last, the Black Fish continued to dominate their pathetic opposition until the final siren, recording a 38-18 rout of the 'Supremes'.

If only there were video of the meltdown suffered by 'Legs'. Alas, there is not. But there is a montage of some of the sweet plays by the Fish, which you will have the good fortune to view later this week.

As the Black Fish juggernaut continues, attention turns to the pivotal clash with league heavyweights, the Aussie Bruddhas, in Round 17.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Round 15

There are few greater rivalries in sport than that between the Black Fish and the tragic detritus of post-modern suburbia that is the DA Boyz. So oppressive was the pre-game tension that the innumerate gaggle of dyskinetic limbs that represented the Boyz could barely bring itself to walk onto the pine until some five minutes of the first half had elapsed. And who could blame them? Five demi-urgic pillars of rippling black-clad masculinity stood at the centre circle, emanating atavistic menace. If it weren't for the Bronx cheers of the capacity crowd, they would surely have scurried from the stadium.

And so it was that the Five Fit Fish - Whittle, Edwards, Noutz, Rodgers and Vasilunas - began their destruction of the hapless Boyz. From the moment the thunderous tap from Rodgers sizzled to the sure hands of a team-mate for a quality fast break, the fate of the Boyz was sealed.

Mere words do no justice to the nature of the merciless annihilation wrought by the Mighty Black Fish. Flawless in every aspect of the game, it was as though the very nature of this beautiful game was wrapped around the DNA of each member of the Fish, a metaphysical connection linking these five fine men and Sport itself. Fortunately words are not required on this occasion. Super-wife Ly captured the essence of the contest on low-quality digital video, a montage of which will be published on this very site within the next few days. Suffice to say, there are a few easy lay-ups on the video.

And what of the five greats who fashioned this mighty victory?

Vasilunas: All spirit, he never stopped running despite having to use a boggy cytokine-ridden mess in place of his ankle.

Rodgers: Was not beaten for a single rebound all night. As always, the rock upon which the Black Fish temple is built.

Noutz: Dynamic, aggressive, possibly a little frightening, he again demonstrated his mastery of the fine line between vigorous basketball and actually killing a couple of little blokes. Again contributed on the scoreboard. Left one or two fingers in the net at the Eastern end.

Edwards: The vital link player in the many end-to-end transition plays that characterised the victory. Continues to tap a rich vein of form at the low post. Avoided any chance of Bronx cheers.

Whittle: Shamelessly helped himself to a lazy 35 points.

And so, at the end of a breathtaking all-court display, the scoreboard declared the Fish winners 61-26.

On a confidence-building three-game streak, the Black Fish now turn their attention to a Round 16 clash with traditional rivals Air Supreme as they focus on consolidating a top-four position, and adding a few more plays to the ever-expanding highlight reel.

Stay tuned as we launch the first of our Warner Wolf-style video packages later this week.

Updated Fixture List

June 29: Black Fish v Air Supreme 10:30pm*

July 6: Black Fish v Aussie Bruddhas 10:30pm*

July 13: Black Fish v The Fakers 9:00pm*

July 20: Black Fish v Homebrand 6:00pm*

July 27: Black Fish v Spectrum 9:00pm*

August 3: Black Fish v East All-Stars 9:00pm*

August 10: Black Fish v DA Boyz 7:30pm*

August 17: Black Fish v Air Supreme 7:30pm*

August 24: Black Fish v Aussie Bruddhas 9:45pm*

August 31: Black Fish v The Fakers 9:00pm*

September 7: Semi-Final

September 14: Grand Final

* denotes Rivalry Round

Friday, June 16, 2006

News Flash

Players and fans are advised that the bye scheduled for June 22 has been replaced with an 8:15pm game against league newcomers (and traditional rivals) the 'DA Boyz' (seriously), a team described by MARS Stadium management as 'very much an E-grade side'.

Don't miss it.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Round 14

It was deep into Winter season 2006 and the Fish had their backs to the wall. Sitting uncomfortably outside the top four, ravaged by soft-tissue injury, and facing the prospect of a first-ever clash with traditional rivals Homebrand, a side holding down a solid second spot and in possession of a towering percentage. Lesser teams may have folded.

But not the Black Fish.

Seven fine men strode onto hoodoo Court 3 in trying sub-zero conditions. One fine man (your Round 13 correspondent) kept on striding, taking his 'bag-o-chips' thorax all the way to the scorers' bench.

The Fish signalled their intent from the outset. Weeks, R, in his highly-anticipated return from McLeodesque injury, brought a noticeable zip to the backcourt and was a constant offensive threat with his trick-bag of novelty shots from downtown.

In perhaps the most complete display by the Fish in 2006, each man played his role to perfection. Weeks and Whittle controlled the perimeter, Rodgers dominated the boards at both ends, Vasilunas provided constant offensive potency (and is the clear leader in one-percenters), Noutz (looking resplendent) scared the living Bejesus out of any opponent in his trajectory, and Nissen overcame a debilitating thoracic injury to make a solid contribution without resorting to having a Nancy-boy first-aid kit on the bench.

In an almost flawless display, the Black Fish dominated the first half. The slick passes, hard-running, and commitment to team-mates provided constant joy and inspiration to the solid crowd of Ly and Edwards, S. By the long break the Fish had established a handy 8 point lead, but knew that their highly-fancied opposition would fight back in the second half.

Much has been written about the Black Fish spirit. Intangible, but undoubtedly real, it exists at the core of this great club. Those of you fortunate enough to have met one or more of the players will need no explanation; one can feel it in the depths of one's humanity. Faced with a half-time option of taking a 10-point no-scorer penalty, and in the midst of the most pivotal game of the season, the Fish, as I know you all would have expected, turned down the offer and chose to face their destiny unaided. As true men.

When Homobrand closed the gap to 2 points within minutes of the start of the second half, one could be excused for pondering the wisdom of such a decision. But this is no ordinary team. In a game of a standard described as 'much better than E-grade' by the referees in a seemingly private half-time discussion, the Black Fish knew they had to lift.

And lift they did. In a stunning burst of sustained skill and intensity, the Fish broke open the game late in the second half. Sharp passes, strong work at the post, dominance in the air, a paucity of unforced errors, flawless foul-shooting, spectacular fast-breaks (and one audacious sky-hook) left their opponents gasping.

That's Black Fish spirit.

With minutes remaining and a tenacious Homobrand using their trusted 'ineffective drive into the key' play at every opportunity, a lesser team may have opted for a time-out. But not the Black Fish. Even the plaintive cries of 'Tempo Basketball' from Neil Edwards on the sideline were ignored as the Fish pressed on towards victory.

In the end, the scoreboard declared a stunning upset victory for the Black Fish 36-33. The Fish now go into the mid-season break brimming with confidence and with a strong chance of breaking back into the top four.

A massive crowd is sure to be present for the late game against traditional rivals Spectrum in two weeks.

Sweet Victory

(The complete photo set may be found here)

Round 13

A special treat for the regular readers out there: this week sees the match report filed by rookie reporter Sam Edwards. A true Black Fish effort, particularly the effort exerted in chasing the meaningless record of 'longest match report ever'. (A lazy 1083 words for those of you interested). It is a measure of the inverse variation of the BF match reporting to practice time that the mighty Fish teeter on the brink of missing the finals, but possess the finest website in all of cyberspace. Enjoy:

"Whilst seemingly inauspicious to the solitary spectator who (may have) witnessed the match, its Round 13 clash against traditional rivals the Aussie Bruddhas will long be remembered as a watershed moment in the history of the Black Fish. With their esteemed leader forced to seek treatment in a land far away for what one can only presume was a mystery bank-related injury, in addition to the plethora of well-documented injuries to our much-admired heroes, the Black Fish were down to only two fit men. Teetering on the cusp of the top four, this prestigious Club was facing the unspeakable possibility of forfeiting the 3 points to the undisputed minnows of the Marden E grade Thursday Night Men’s Open Basketball Competition. Such a shameful occurrence may have been enough to send The Club into a downward spiral of despair and drug-fuelled destruction from which they may have never recovered. But fortunately, due to an unprecedented show of commitment and courage, largely shown in the hours leading up to the game, we will never know. The irrepressible Black Fish spirit was to prevail once again.

The final minutes pre-game provided an unexpected rollercoaster of emotions and fortunes. With the realization that they would be able to assemble a team, however injury-riddled, the sense of relief amongst the Black Fish was palpable as they hobbled through their pre-game routine. This was heightened when the already less-than-formidable opposition outfit appeared to have only a starting four just moments before tip-off, and the thoughts of at least one Fish turned fleetingly to record scores. These were quickly interrupted by the announcement that the Fish were to give away a 14 point headstart, due to a lack of scorer and subtle uniform violation. Further perceived trouble for The Fish came with the arrival of the fifth, ironically-named “Aussie Bruddha”. It appeared that the Bruddha recruiting staff had either finally learnt the error of their ways or had themselves been replaced. Whilst they could be previously forgiven for being mistakenly briefed to recruit for a weekly pie-eating competition, their latest offering did indeed appear to be some sort of athlete, straight off the plane from his west-African homeland, complete with tribal singlet (or had he assumed from his team’s name they would all be wearing the canary yellow?). At least the uniform violation had been squared up. And so it appeared the ailing Fish had their work cut out for them.

It would soon become obvious that this was certainly not the case. The free-flowing Black Fish game quickly saw the erosion of the Bruddhas’ early, questionably-earned lead, and by half time the Fish were well and truly in the black. The second half saw the Fish extend their lead further, with what could be described only as a little ‘showtime’ action, resulting in their highest score for the season. It was only the Bruddhas’ full use of their seriously life-saving time-outs which prevented the Fish from reaching the holy grail 100 point barrier It was a gutsy and very even team performance, particularly from the Fish’s backbone group.

In a huge positive for The Club, the game saw a confident debut from former state baseballer Birt, R, who managed to put aside the guilt of leaving his young family in coming to the rescue of the Black Fish. The jury is still out as to where he had his greater influence – with his pre-game celebrex distribution amongst his team, or his on-court efforts – which is a true credit to his first performance in the hallowed black strip either way.

Rodgers, N continued his fine form with another pea-shelling scoring exhibition. With his customary nonchalance, he finished with a game-high 20+ points, and could have walked away with many more were it not for his unselfish play, or sheer boredom, I’m not sure which.

Vasilunas, T., arguably one of the more under-rated players in the competiton, put in another very solid performance, overcoming the adversity of the much publicised ever-increasing swelling of his appendage. He certainly stepped up to the plate in the absence of the silky ball-carrying skills of Whittle, S. and played a pivotal role as the game’s chief-play maker.

Big Noutz, C was cleverly used by the Fish coaching hierarchy in a secretive (even to fellow team members) impact role, bursting onto the court from the well-hidden bench shortly before half-time. The stunning move was vindicated not only by the victory itself, but in front of a global audience when Guus Hiddink ‘borrowed’ the masterstroke to defeat the Blue Samurai only days later. The Black Fish Administration are currently speaking to their lawyers. Noutz, C’s (and therefore Noutz, I’s) sacrifice in leaving his 2 year old daughter unattended for 2 hours at ‘day care’ was symbolic of the team’s commitment and spirit, and is to be highly commended.

But it was Nissen, M who put in the performance of the night, that was to defy his rapidly advancing years and Father Time himself. He complemented his flawless defensive game that the fans have come to expect, with the addition of a procession of two pointers from all parts of the key, to come away with an early birthday present in the form of the MVP. The only dampener was the apparent rib injury he sustained shortly before the final siren. One can only hope it was not as serious as that of his highly revered team-mate.

It was only moments before tip-off that Edwards, S bravely declared himself ‘fit’, having been under a massive injury cloud all week with a crippling rib injury so heinous as to be undetectable with traditional roentgenography,. However it seemed that he had used every ounce of his vast reserves of courage to physically make it onto the court, as he proceeded to set a record low for hard-ball-gets in Marden Men’s Basketball history. This statistic was rivaled only by his huge unforced skill-error count, causing multiple turnovers which led ultimately to a highly flattering scoreboard for the Bruddhas, which at the end of the 40 minutes read 57-27.

The result could see the Fish crash into the top four, and no doubt sent the Bruddhas straight back to the pie-shop. The Club now turn their attention to their Round 14 clash against the previously unseen traditional rival ‘Homebrand’. The classier and hopefully rejuvenated Black Fish outfit will no doubt be treating this as a mini-final, the result of which could go a long way in deciding the make up of the final four."

Thursday, June 1, 2006

Round 12

First, the positives: no new injuries.

Vasilunas, T exemplified the Black Fish spirit this round, hauling himself back out onto Court 1 for the twilight fixture against the East 'All-Stars' with his foot attached to the end of his leg by little more than a tenacious piece of skin in order to make up a total of five Fish on the pine.

Edwards, S was also doing it tough, sufficiently damaged (or psychologically fragile) from last week's game to require a makeshift thoracocentesis kit at the courtside. To the deep disappointment of all of his team-mates no heroic chest-puncturing was required. Had it not been for the lack of depth at the club at present I have no doubt that one of us would have wielded the Bic late in the second half just for the comedy value.

And so it was that an injury-ravaged quintet of pure masculine energy strode onto Court 1 against a motley collection of freaks that was intent on keeping the Monchhichi firmly on the Fish's back.

An entertaining (and unusually high-scoring) first half saw the Fish play to their strengths: an impenetrable zone and a free-wheeling approach to offense kept the Fish level with their enormous-singleted opponents at half-time.

The second half remained entertaining (but not for the Fish). As the complete phenotype:skill mismatch of their African cousin became apparent, the Monchhichis abandoned their initial game-plan and embarked on an ambitious (but ultimately fruitful) full court press. In the chaos that ensued, Whittle played above himself for a glittering 30 seconds before playing well below himself for the remaining 19 minutes and 30 seconds. Without the silky back-court stylings of Rodgers (A) and Weeks, the valiant Fish were harried into a number of uncharacteristic ball-handling errors. Unfortunately the 'All-Stars', having honed their skills lobbing coconuts in their native forest, took full advantage by nailing a succession of lucky outside shots.

Not even their scoreboard advantage, however, could excuse the ridiculous free-throw line boot-scooting of the Monchhichi's own 'Looks like Tarzan, plays like Jane' import. One doesn't need to be a man of faith to recognise that the hand of God himself prevented both free throws from dropping.

In the end, the Fish could be considered the moral victors. The braver side. Undoubtedly the prettier side. The team for all South Australians, if you will. The scoreboard, however, described a heart-breaking loss, 27-43.

Stay tuned next week for a mystery guest columnist to guide you through all the highs and lows of the return clash with traditional rivals, the variably chromosomed Aussie Bruddhas.

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Round 11

With the increasingly fragile Weeks, R having succumbed to a suspicious Achilles enthesopathy only one game into his comeback (urethral swab result pending), the injury-riddled Fish limped onto court 2 for their first ever game against traditional rivals, the ironically-named 'Air Supreme'.

The courage of the Black Fish in even putting together 5 players brought a lump to the throat, and certainly drew a large crowd. While Goodwife Whittle resumed scoring duties, it was the courtside debut of future cheerleader Immi Noutz that had tongues wagging. Her magnificent work with cries of 'Mighty Black Fish' inspired all of the on-court contingent (and undoubtedly threatened the incredibly physically unimposing 'Air Supreme'), while her use of the clappers reminded us all of Richard's 'injury'.

The game started with a high level of intensity, no better characterised than by 'Wrecking Ball' Noutz's 4 fouls within the first 16 seconds of the first half. Despite dominating play across the court, the Fish found it difficult to impose themselves on the scoreboard in the first half. The brave decision by Supreme's chief playmaker to take every shot despite his slightly worrisome zero percent from the floor may have contributed slightly to the Fish's narrow half-time lead.

The second half was highlighted by several atypical events, and one very typical event.

Typically, the Fish regrouped at the long break and came out firing. The game was effectively over within minutes of the second half as the mighty mighty Black Fish dominated play and drew away to a clear lead.

Less typically, 'Runaway Train' Noutz managed to survive the whole game without accruing another foul (but still steamrolled a few of the little 'Supremes' who sorely deserved it).

Even more bizarrely, the Supremes, having established an unassailable deficit, and giving away several hundred kilograms to the Fish at the pre-bout weigh-in, decided to impose themselves physically on the encounter. What followed was a series of dissatisfying minor stoushes, mostly featuring weak pushing and a bit of scratching by the Supremes. The Fish took the moral high ground and simply ground out an impressive 28-8 victory.

All five Fish players contributed magnificently to the percentage-boosting victory: Nissen's defensive game continues to impress, Noutz was a massive physical presence (and has a sweet touch from the charity stripe), Rodgers, N continued his role as Chairman of the Boards, Whittle salvaged an unimpressive game with a huge three-pointer (and excessive celebration) at the buzzer, while Edwards played possibly his finest game in a stellar Black Fish career, his solid defence and smooth moves in the offensive keyway setting up the team's massive victory. A fine effort by all.

Don't miss this week's huge clash as the Fish resume hostilities with the Monchhichis.

Round 10

Ah yes....Round 10 - it seems like only yesterday.

The injury-depleted Fish took to court 2 for the late game against traditional rivals The Fakers. Even the entire cheer squad was apparently severely injured, as not one of them turned out for this crunch game.

An otherwise unremarkable match was highlighted by the excellent bout of fisticuffs on court 3 moments prior to the opening ball-up, and by the first ever Black Fish match report to feature the word 'fisticuffs'.

Perhaps an even more significant occurrence was the long-overdue return to the court of former better-than-adequate player and serial knee injury victim Richard 'Python' Weeks. Weeks signalled his intentions early with an audacious drive and low-arm finger-lob that caught nothing but net, and his sublime work at the point added much to an already skill-replete team.

Unfortunately for the Fish, who bravely fought out a physical and highlight-packed match, their Faker hoodoo was destined to continue as they succumbed 28-36.

As this fine side enters the depths of the mid-season they will be forced to dig deep in order to remain in the top four. Fish fans, there can be no surer bet than that your boys will call on all their reserves of skill and commitment and surge back towards the top of the ladder.

We might even have a training session.....

Thursday, May 18, 2006


Our thoughts are with you as you recover from injury.

From the entire Black Fish family.

Injury #3

Doesn't look so impressive here does it? Rest assured, Fish Fans, this is one of the worst injuries in Black Fish history.

Injury #2

More impressive than Injury #1

Round 9

The Horror....

A nightmare round for the mighty Black Fish has rocked the club and required your humble correspondent to take a full week to digest the events before posting this match report.

A confident Black Fish unit took to Court Three for the late fixture against traditional rival, the monkey-backed Spectrum, featuring first-gamer Big Carl Noutz in place of 'ill' nancy-boy Rodgers, N, and a debut appearance courtside by the Goodwife Edwards.

A tense first half was characterised by steely defence from both sides - it appeared that the capacity crowd was in for a tight encounter. But then three major events were to define the remainder of the game.

First, in a sickening collision, the nimble-footed Rodgers, A, returning fresh from a brief period in the reserves, drove hard into the offensive keyway, only to be met by the fearsome bulk of a couple of Fat Spectrum Bastards (FSBs). It was only after the laughter from his Black Fish teammates had finally diminished did the crowd notice that the brave number 6 had failed to get up. Fortunately two Rheumatologists were on the court to provide a definitive blank stare and shrug of the shoulders before Rodgers, A was unceremoniously dumped on a courtside bench, allowing the main game to resume.

The sting has not long returned to the encounter when club stalwart Vasilunas suffered a gut-churning ankle inversion injury. Sadly for him, a normally impressive injury was diminished by the Fish's empty reserves of ligament-sympathy and he was forced to continue playing in order to support a shell-shocked Fish side who were increasingly more intent on checking the integrity of their own suspensory ligaments than maintaining a solid zone defence.

Just when it appeared the game was slipping away, the mighty Fish rallied to come within a few points of their opposition. It was then that first-gamer Noutz showed his true BF spirit by launching himself over an opponent in a gravity-defying leap involving at least two twists and a somersault (in the pike position). It was a moment which will live on in the memories of those at the game for eternity.

Unfortunately, neither that effort nor some bombs from downtown by LeBron Whittle were able to prevent an unfortunate 16-24 defeat. The Black Fish were, of course, the moral victors, leaving them in first place on the Moral Premiership ladder, however in a controversial move the management of the MARS League have decided to arrange finals based only on the real premiership ladder.

This adds to the pressure and excitement as the Fish look forward to their Round 10 clash with traditional rivals The Fakers, featuring the first game in 2006 for former fringe player Weeks, R. Don't miss it.

Round 8

A bye allowed the Fish to enjoy a top-notch episode of Lost.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Round 7

A brave Black Fish outfit took to Court Three for the crucial Round 7 clash with traditional rivals East All-Stars - several team members were suffering from a cruel virus, and the squad was depleted by the absence of Rodgers, A (omitted). Crowd numbers, as always, were impressive, including the first appearance in season 2006 for the goodwives Nissen and Vasilunas.

There was a tinge of sadness in the night's events as it became apparent that this would be the last appearance in Winter '06 for Foundation player Suresh Rajapaksa. Our excitement at his acceptance of a playing contract in the NBA was tempered slightly when it was revealed that he will in fact be playing out the season in the WNBA. Nevertheless, we wish him the best in this exciting new chapter in his career.

As expected, the first half was a tense and skilful encounter. 'Chairman of the Boards' Rodgers (N) again led the way, but a tight full-court performance throughout the playing list ensured that the Fish took the honours in a tight first half. Some credit is due to the 'All-Stars' - it was revealed after the game that the All-Stars' playing singlets had accidently left their players in the wash too long and returned to find them shrunk to half their previous size.

The free-wheeling second half was both spectacular and frustrating. As the game opened up the scoring rate increased for both sides. The Fish, of course, were flawless, or would have been, if not for the pointless and infuriating monkey screeching of their pathetic opponents. It was eveident that despite the striking resemblance, the All-Stars side was not comprised of Monchhichis, since as we all recall 'Monchhichi mean happiness'.

Sadly, a desperate final few minutes by the Fish was not enough to see them avoid defeat 37-47.
The capacity crowd were unanimous, however, in awarding the Black Fish the moral victory. It was a cruel reality check for the Fish, whose recent rich vein of form had seen them clinb to second place on the ladder, however their strong percentage will see them retain a position in the top four.

On a lighter note, who could fail to be delighted by the apparently serious ankle injury suffered late in the game by one of the All-Stars (pictured here on his way to hospital). Had his writhing and grimacing not been so profoundly hilarious, the final scores may have been a little closer. Undoubtedly his loose-limbed sprawl at the end of the court will remain a fond memory for Fish players and fans for many years to come.

A bye next week means the Fish will have two weeks of intensive training (as is usual for them) before their return encounter with traditional rivals Spectrum (or at least those members of Spectrum who have not succumbed to vascular disease since Round 4). A massive crowd is again expected, so get your tickets early.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Round 6

The Black Fish returned to the court for their round 6 clash after a brief hiatus which saw thousands more women worldwide disappointed following yet another Black Fish wedding. The goodwife Chan made her courtside debut as the Black Fish faced up to traditional rivals the Aussie Bruddhas.

Regular readers of this column have come to expect an incisive description of the physical attributes of the opposing team. No such description is needed tonight. We know what we saw. Indeed, there are no words which can truly capture the spectacle which took place on Court 1 tonight.

Yet again the Fish started out with frightening defensive intensity which completely shut down their opponents, but were unable to capitalise on multiple scoring opportunities early in the first half. The cloud of frustration which began to descend on the heads of the Fish players was punctuated only by the shrill laughter coming from the courtside wife.

Despite their disappointments in offence the Fish were able to retard the attack of the Bruddhas who tried valiantly to put on a special performance. Half-time saw the Bruddhas scoreless but more importantly saw the Black Fish questioning themselves as to whether they had made the best use of their even number of chromosomes.

A fired up Fish outfit began the second half looking to put on a clinic, but from the outset it was clear that this would be far more than just a clinic. Indeed, it was more like a sheltered workshop. A withering full-court press, numerous stunning defensive intercepts, an impressive conversion rate from under the bucket, and some elegant shot-making from Nissen all combined to pressure a fragile brothers side. The Black Fish X-factor saw their opponents crumble.

Some flukey prayer shots by the Bruddmeisters added a modicum of respectability to the scoreline at the final buzzer but it was the Black Fish who took out the match 49 -10, extending their winning streak to 3 games. It was a satisfying percentage booster for the side as they attempt to consolidate a spot in the top four.

Next week sees another early clash against league newcomers (and traditional rivals) the East All-stars. Don't miss it.

Fixtures Winter 2006

April 27 : Black Fish v East All-Stars 6:45 pm

May 4 : BYE

May 11 : Black Fish v Spectrum 9:45 pm

May 18 : Black Fish v The Fakers 9:00 pm

May 25 : Black Fish v Air Supreme 7:30 pm

June 1 : Black Fish v East All-Stars 6:00 pm

June 8 : Black Fish v Aussie Bruddhas 6:00 pm

June 15 : Black Fish v Homebrand 8:15 pm

June 22 : Black Fish v DA Boyzzz 8:15 pm

June 29 : Black Fish v Spectrum 10:30 pm

July 6 : Black Fish v The Fakers 9:00 pm

July 13 : Black Fish v Air Supreme 7:30 pm

July 20 : Black Fish v East All-Stars 8:15 pm

July 27 : Black Fish v Aussie Bruddhas 6:00 pm

August 3 : Black Fish v Homebrand 10:30 pm

August 10 : BYE

August 17 : Black Fish v Spectrum 7:30 pm

August 24 : Black Fish v The Fakers 9:45 pm

August 31 : Black Fish v East All-Stars 6:00 pm

September 7 : Semi-Final

September 14 : Grand Final

Friday, April 7, 2006


Thanks to the slick photographic stylings of the incomparable Hoang Ly, we now have a site dedicated to a pictorial record of this great club. It can be found here.

Please spread the word (and if you have any photos you would like added to the site, please email me).

As a female spectator was heard to say at last night's game: "These Black Fish are not Men, but Gods!"

Round 5

The Black Fish juggernaut headed to the unfamiliar territory of court 2 for the late night round 5 clash with traditional rivals Lobetrotters. The history of simmering mutual dislike in every Black Fish v Lobetrotters match was again expected to draw a strong crowd, and for once expectations were met. The Goodwives Rajapaksa and Whittle created a raucous courtside din that clearly rattled the unfortunate-looking 'Trotters.

A tense opening period saw the Fish slip to a 4-8 deficit as they failed to capitalise on a number of strong scoring opportunities. In true Black Fish fashion, however, the men lifted in response to the plaintive wailing of the ravishing courtside beauties, and began to exert their dominance over the 'Trotters. The ironically-named carrot-topped 'Trotter "Carrot" managed to keep his side in the game until half-time with some aggressive drives to the bucket. It was clear from his condition, however, that his diet has consisted of considerably more than just his namesakes, and this told dearly in the second half as he all but faded completely from the game.

The inside strength of N. Rodgers, the dash of A. Rodgers, the defensive intensity of Nissen, the unflagging committment of Rajapaksa, the consistency of Vasilunas, the flawless outside shooting of Edwards and the unmistakeable class of Whittle all came to the fore in a second half best described as a procession. Only two late fluke shots by the 'Trotter dwarf-brigade kept the scorecard looking respectable.

At the final siren the Black Fish had extended their winning streak with a stunning 27-19 victory.

Next week sees the Easter hiatus, followed by the eagerly-awaited clash with traditional rivals the Aussie Bruddhas.


As expected, the popularity of this website is growing exponentially. Your experience of this site will be greatly enhanced if you view it using Firefox as your web browser (rather than Internet Explorer). The page looks better and the links will work better (particularly the club song).

It's a free download and will not do anything strange to your computer. It is truly a liberating experience.

And don't turn to the person next to you and whisper 'I think he's talking to you...'

Thursday, March 30, 2006


Sweet Victory

Round 4

An apprehensive hush fell over the capacity crowd at MARS Stadium tonight as the proud Black Fish took to the court for a crucial Round 4 clash with traditional rivals Spectrum. After a forfeit and two heartbreaking losses, the season was on the line for the sentimental favourites.

There can be no greater demonstration of the tense atmosphere during the opening stages of this clash than the scoreline towards the end of the first half: 2-2. This was a watershed moment. And the Fish knew it. It is the mark of a champion team to respond at such a moment - and respond this grand team did. At once the crushing 'mystery' zone defence shut down the Spectrum offence more effectively than their waist-hip ratios were narrowing their coronary vessels, resulting in a spectacular display of insanity by every member of their team who had not yet reached VO2max. To quote the referee: "That number 22 is a fucking nutcase. The crazy fucker."

A panicked time-out by Spectrum was not enough to halt the offensive march by a rejuvenated Fish outfit. Fast breaks, offensive boards, flawless free-throw shooting (OK, by Nick Rodgers only), and high-quality niggling were all on display as the Fish drew away from their malodorous foes.

The second half was simply a procession as the mighty mighty Black Fish stormed to their first win of the season, 26-14.

Not even the late start next week will keep the diehard fans from flocking to MARS to watch the Fish tackle traditional rivals Lobetrotters.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Round 3

After the euphoria and heartbreak of Round 2, there was an expectant air at MARS stadium for the Round 3 encounter between the mighty Black Fish and traditional rival The Fakers. The Fish were buoyed by the return of the Rodgers brothers from their overseas pre-season, and the official debut of talented youngster Nissen as a full-time Fish.

After a cautious start by both sides the Fakers established a slender half-time lead. Relentless defensive pressure by the Black Fish in the premiership quarter brought the scores to within a few points and forced a panicky time-out by a rattled (and unattractive) Fakers outfit.

Sadly for the large contingent of Fish fans sitting courtside, the Fakers drew away in a dramatic final few moments. Despite claiming a moral victory, the scorecard records another heartbreaking loss for the Black Fish, 22-29.

On a positive note, no major injuries were recorded. On an even more positive note, no Fishettes were present to witness the mincy free-throw efforts from their otherwise testosterone-laden men.

The Black Fish look forward to a capacity crowd for their Round 4 encounter with traditional rivals Spectrum.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Round 2

Round 2 saw the Black Fish back in action for the first time in some 9 years in an epic clash with The Flaming Wedgies.

Alkis Psaltis bravely stepped up at the last minute to join a depleted Fish line-up of only 5 players (and thus only 9 functioning lungs).

A vocal crowd watched a brave BF team go down 23 -38.

Although in touch with the Wedgies at half-time, the limited pre-season began to tell late in the game as a youthful Wedgie outfit pulled away from their vastly more attractive opponents.

No major injuries were recorded, allowing the Fish to focus their full attention on a critical Round 3 encounter.

Wednesday, March 8, 2006

Theme song

It's time for the fans to nominate their choice for the Black Fish theme song.

I vote for this song.

(with apologies to renowned blogger Blogjam for pinching his work)

Players Winter 2006

This season sees the biggest upheaval in playing stocks in the history of the club.

Expect to see the following athletes grace the pine:

00 - Sam Whittle
06 - Alex Rodgers
07 - Sam Edwards
10 - Michael Nissen
17 - Nick Rodgers
21 - Tristan Vasilunas
23 - Suresh Rajapaksa
0.5 terabyte - Carl Noutz

Tuesday, March 7, 2006

Early Disappointment for Fans

The diehard band of BF supporters was devastated to learn late today that the long-awaited return of the Fish is to be postponed by one week.

Due to unforeseen scheduling difficulties (and the weak effort of Phil Humphris not to fly back from Ethiopia), the mighty Fish have been forced to forfeit their round one match on March 9.

No doubt this early minor setback will only strengthen the resolve of the team to sweep to a stunning return Premiership 10 years after their triumph at Marion.

Monday, March 6, 2006

Fixtures Winter 2006

March 9 : Black Fish v Famous Potatoes 9:45pm

March 16 : Black Fish v Flaming Wedgies 8:15pm

March 23 : Black Fish v The Fakers 8:15pm

March 30 : Black Fish v Spectrum 9:00pm

April 6 : Black Fish v Lobetrotters 10:30pm

April 13 : Easter Break

April 20 : Black Fish v Aussie Bruddhas 6:45pm

Black Fish Are Back!

Welcome to the official web record of the world's premier amateur basketball club - the mighty mighty Black Fish.

This blog will be a forum for spreading the BF message to the world. Look forward to reading all the results as they happen, a club history, and profiles of your favourite players.

As a BF fan, you will have the opportunity to view upcoming fixtures, download photos of your club heroes, and take advantage of the club's magnificent merchandise.

Enjoy the ride as the mighty Fish re-enter the fray at Marden for season Winter 06.