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.