Monday, February 18, 2013

Derbyversaiiire: Paris Vs. Windsor

Paris RollerGirls All-Stars (152-170) Royal Windsor Rollergirls
Panam Squad (193-167) Kamiquadz
February 16th, 2013 / Paris.
Our DERBYVERSAIIIRE was celebrated this weekend with a big double-header as the new season kickoff, featuring the Paris RollerGirls All Star Vs. The Who Dares Windsor (the Royal Windsor A Team), preceded by a men's derby game opposing the Panam Squad to the Kamiquadz.

Sold out!

The event was taking place at the usual Bercy Gym. We were victims of our own success: All the tickets were sold in hardly three hours with no advertizing and only a short facebook announcement... We stopped the outflow after a couple of hours, saying that we would put the last 100 tickets on sale the next day at 12. We were sold out at 12:03. Scary... but promissing.
All the organization teams were more than prepared and the event ran pretty smoothly. All the spectators managed to squeeze in whether on the tiers, at the balustrade behind, or in the suicide zone under.

The crazy demand can be explained by several factors:
• It was the first Paris RollerGirls bout at home since the game against the Berlin Bomshells last July. People are badly in need.
• It was the first 100% Merby game, the first Men's derby game in Paris, and the first game of the Panam Squad!
• It was a WFTDA game against a full-member league... which should open us the door to the full membership too (fingers crossed!)

Panam Squad (Paris) Vs. Kamiquadz (Montpellier)

Unfortunately I could not attend the men's game as I had to get ready for mine, which is a shame as I had friends I wanted to see skating in both teams. The game was close, not very clean, and the lead changed hands a few times. The Panam Squad finally won with a short head, 193 to 167. A successful first takeoff for our pigeons!

The Men's MVPs were blockers Sgt. Hurtman (#9999, Kamiquadz) and PassPa'ss (#19KC, Panam), and jammers Candel Heros (#0, Kamiquadz) and Mirage (#00, Panam).

Report on the Death Pouffes' Website (Montpellier)

It was Windsor's first international bout. Paris was a bit ahead in the ranking but nothing was set in advance -- proof here! Paris led from B to Y. Yep, because at A and (unfortunately for us) Z, Windsor was ahead!

Credit: Craig Richmond
The game was divided into two parts, corresponding to the two periods. Let's note that we managed to get into the game as soon as the first jam (although we did not lead right away), which is a great progress because we are usually more of the diesel kind, but that was BEFORE. We were leading the whole first period and our jammers took the lead the three quarters of the time, despite decimated packs and a massive Parisian turnover at the box, which was always crowded. The heavy losses were mainly due to our (slow) adjustment to the new rules. The game was quite hectic and the referees even asked both teams to calm down because they had the feeling that we were becoming purposely violent. The first period ended with a score of 109 to 77 for Paris.

At the second period, Windsor changed tactics. Their walls were more substancial and they took longer to go through, the blockers were better organized than for their first period and were far cleaner than us, so that they outnumbered us on the track. Yet, we held on, keeping a close lead but not managing to put ourselves out of reach: we would have needed a couple players more on the track to hold the opposing jammers back longer and enable our jammers to score more passes. We were on the edge with no alternative in case of mishap. We had still the overall advantage but Windsor was hotter and hotter on our heels, ready to seize the occasion that would cost us dearly.
Our jammer is sent to the box three jams before the end, for a cutting, a misfortune which enables Windsor to take the lead back and get enough ahead not to be caught up in the two remaining jams. 170 to 152. Game Over.

Our blockers did some great actions, our jammers were particularly clean, but the sum of our mistakes got the better of us. A bit frustrating so close to the end. However the final score does not take away the good job we have done, which reflects a united (young) team, still learning to know each other, eager to work and fight together. Let's be cleaner next time for each one of us to play more!

The best players of the day were blockers Calamity Lane (#84, Windsor) and Meryl Strip-Her (#00, Paris) and jammers CruciVix (#31, Windsor) and Kozmic Bruise (#B612, Paris -- pretty excited about that). We were treated to the cutest trophies made of a wheel painted in blue, topped with glitter dusted bearings holding three candles!

Credit: Craig Richmond

I only went to the "first" afterparty, talked with a few people, did not even have the time to talk with the Men's teams who flew solo to another bar because the first one was crowded, nor with the Windsor girls... Still, I took the time to chat a bit with a couple of them during the bout on the jammer line before the jams. I liked the atmosphere about the game, by the way: no malicious competition, it was very respectful and fair play -- just like the men's I heard.

At two, tiredness and headache ate away my motivation to follow most of the people to the after-afterparty and we took the last metros home.

Credit: Craig Richmond


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