Finally, we’ve reached the last of the groups in the mixed category. There’s a couple of exciting match-ups in store here!
From Germany, the Wuzburg Wombats, White Terriers Saar and Duisburg Dockers take their place against some difficult foreign adversaries. The White Terriers boast probably one of the cutest names at the tournament, and also have experience under their belt – they hosted their own Saarbowl in March of this year. While they struggled splitting their team up on that day, they surely picked up valuable experience which should help at Big Bowl, especially as they took on sides such as the Allstars and Greifs, who are both seasoned tournament vets. The Duisburg Dockers finished basically middle of the pack last year at 28th, and will wanting to improve on that this year. The final German side, and most effective, are the Wurzburg Wombats. They’re no strangers to the London Smoke, as they finished top of Group D last season over the Smoke on their way to an 8th overall finish.
While London will be looking for revenge, they’ll feel assured that missing electric QB Charlie Williams last year was the reason for their downturn in performance. They recently came runners up at King Bowl, after an OT loss to the Wanderers, but they’ll be feeling they can do some damage this year with a somewhat simple group to negotiate.
Their biggest challenges will be the ever-impressive Novo Mesto Knights. The five time Slovenian national champs had a slight dip last year, having previously finished 6th, they were left 13th in 2018 when they entered a weakened side. They boast the SFFL MVP, Davorin Štravs, who does damage on both offence and defence.
Tauraux finished bottom of a difficult group B last year with no wins on the board. They did push the Wild Hogs close, but didn’t find any success until the Sunday, where a couple of wins gave them a 45th place finish.
The Smoke and Novo Mesto Knights are going through – but in which order?
Given that the BAFA Leagues are in full swing, and the SFFL is only in its infancy, we’ll argue that the Smoke are maybe a little more in football-shape – they’ve also done well at Cancun Bowl and King Bowl this season, which gives us confidence. They’ll top the group, barely, while Novo Mesto will be a comfortable second place side. Do not sleep on the Knights to do some damage in the top bracket though.
In third we’ll see the Wombats fall from grace ever-so-slightly, but that would be no insult to them. They should fare well in the middle bracket of the tournament. Fourth place goes to the Dockers, who will likely see a number of the same squads they squared off against in the same bracket last year.
We’re going to pick the Tauraux to get some group success this year, as they’ll take fifth ahead of the White Terriers.