vir non camelus est.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Round 19: BF v Deja Vu

Some teams one simply dislikes (see The Disgraced). And other teams are such a deplorable melange of Monchhichi outcasts that one can barely muster the psychic energy to register an emotion other than the vaguely disinterested, lip-curling kind of subconscious revulsion that wells up upon stepping in a fetid pile of dog excrement.

Or so it is for me anyway.

And with this thought fresh in their minds, the mighty Black Fish took to court three for the pivotal encounter with the little chimps. A fine Fish unit it was too, bolstered by the timely return of Weeks (R) and Foreman (D), the eagerly-anticipated re-warming of the scorer's chair by the slender buttocks of Rajapaksa (S), the incomparable courtside stylings of Foreman (L) and Rodgers (S) - who, it must be added, is putting in a strong effort for Supporter-of-the-Year honours in 2007 - and the spectacular Black Fish debut of promising rookie Whittle (N).

Few would argue that this represented one of the most highly-skilled, and undoubtedly the tallest, Black Fish teams ever to take to the pine, and hopes were high for a favourable outcome in this pivotal clash with the second-ranked team.

Unfortunately for the Fish, 'the Vu' decided to institute a game plan of annoying zippy mosquito-like mincy-hand-slappy interception basketball, interspersed with a three-point shooting accuracy in excess of 80 percent. And for the SuperFish, this game plan was basketballing kryptonite.

By half time, the Fish were in trouble, the referees were angry, Noutz (C) had committed his inaugural unsportsmanlike foul (unwarranted), and the Vu were apparently breeding asexually like mogwai in a swimming pool. They were simply everywhere. It was creepy.

By the middle of the second half, the Fish were in deep trouble. Trailing by as much as 15 points, things looked grim for the crowd favourites. As expected, it was at this point that the Black Fish spirit prevailed and an inspirational fightback began. Whittle (N), who had begun to make telling inroads on the boards, suddenly lit up with some classy inside manoevres and a glorious long bomb. Meanwhile, Rodgers (N), Foreman (D), and Weeks (R) were beginning to exert their dominance, Noutz (C) launched a campaign of terror, and Edwards (S) and Whittle (S) provided metronomic end-to-end consistency.

With only minutes remaining, an unlikely victory suddenly looked possible. But alas, making up the last few points was proving a sisyphean task for the Fish. At which point God himself again proved which Marden Thursday night E-grade basketball team he supports - with the Black Fish down 56-59 and only a handful of seconds left on the clock a minor melee erupted courtesy of one of the countless little pricks that constitute the Deja Vu "mens'" team. A mostly disconsolate and disinterested Black Fish side was then surprised to see the little guys clear their bench of a host of diminutive, unusual-looking, ridiculous-puffy-jacket-wearing aspiring international reptile-smugglers. And that, dear reader, is a contravention of the rules. Enter the big, angry, antalgic-gaited MARS boss, who promptly, and correctly, disqualified the little macaques and awarded a deserving victory to the mighty mighty Black Fish.

What a night.

Next week is a bye and will see the Fish hit the gym for a week of intensive training in preparation for the final game of the minor round. Should the Fish win their final game they will be assured of a place in the finals series. Don't miss it.

Round 18: BF v Homebrand

Dedicated Black Fish fans have come to expect the very highest level of excitement from every BF v Homebrand encounter. Already this season the mighty Fish have recorded a one-point victory and a buzzer-beating 2-point victory against the likely minor premiers. And this match was no different.
Five Black Fish stalwarts, Noutz (C), Rodgers (N), Edwards (S), Whittle (S), and, fresh from his European 'training', 'Lucky Charm' Downing (K), took on a full-strength Homebrand side in a clash that kept the crowd in a perpetual state of excitement (nb: for 'crowd', read: 'Sam Rodgers' and for 'perpetual state of excitement', read: 'intermittent state of non-boredom').
After giving away an early lead, the Fish characteristically clawed their way back into the contest late in the first half, thanks mainly to the inside potency of Rodgers (N) and the flawless five-man 'Black Wall o' Death' defensive zone. Typically, the opposition displayed ironic gutlessness in exacting a 10-point penalty for an unfortunate case of 'recurrent hypolankanscoreria', but equally typically the Fish rose to the challenge. In a magnificently tenacious display from all five Black Fish, the boys seized a slender lead and were able to protect it in a frenetic final few seconds, thus recording a breathtaking 34-33 victory.
And so the dwindling stocks of active Fish keep their finals dreams alive, but will need to draw on all their reserves of skill, guts, turning-upness and courtside rajapaksiness in the final 2 matches of the minor round in order to ensure some September action.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Round 17: BF v The Disgraced

The mighty Black Fish were tragically defeated 30-36.

The details of the match may have to be left to your imagination....

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Round 16: BF v Red Dwarfs ('Disaster Strikes')

A match that had shaped up as an exciting Court 1 shoot-out with the little red pricks turned into a nightmare for the entire Black Fish extended family.

After an otherwise innocuous first half, the highly-competitive Fish entered the second half with a reminder of their opponents' lack of nomimal irony fresh in their minds, the Red Nubbins having exacted a 10-point penalty for a rare BF scorer deficiency. Spurred on by this sad and pathetic behaviour, the Fish tried valiantly to eke out an unlikely victory.

But then disaster struck.

Without warning, the anterior cruciate ligament of Rodgers (A), its few remaining collagen fibres clinging on for dear life, finally rendered its impersonation of a Minneapolis bridge. This was one of the saddest chapters in Black Fish history, Rodgers limping to the bench with what appears to be a career-ending injury. No doubt tributes will flow in from members of the BF family all around the world as we all attempt to deal with the possibility of a foundation member of the club, and former premiership hero, finally joining the Black Fish immortals in retirement (actually, he will be our first retirement, so I suppose he is the inaugural immortal).

Anyway, a terrible tragedy.

As for the small red men? Well, they sportingly used the injury to enforce a full-court press on the remaining four Fish, thus streaking away with a shallow victory. All class.

And as for the Black Fish? Despite the 37-54 defeat, and the loss of one of their greats, they will push on towards finals glory.

Round 15: BF v Metal Slug

Your correspondent apologises for the long delay between match reports. But sans sincerity.

A grand total of four Fish managed to haul their sorry arses out onto court for the big match against the Slug, intent on extending their record-breaking winning streak. Unfortunately for the Black Fish, the Slug were equally intent on interrupting said streak, and managed to bring a full complement of players with them to boot.

Against all odds, the Fish competed magnificently, but could not prevent a streak-ending 28-34 defeat. But fear not, gentle fan, for the Black Fish finals juggernaut rolls on....