The Dreadball gods have been calling the faithful to return to the pitch. And so, last night, the teams started warming up in anticipation of the possible upcoming league.
On the pitch were the orx and goblin team, The Smiling Pretty Boys, up against the new kids on the block, a team of zees that at this time are un-named. The crowd were glad to be back in the stadium again, but unsure as to what this match up might offer. To many seasoned fans, the power of the orx guards seemed to be a force that would prove too much for the zees to handle. However this was a zees home game and their fans waited with eager expectation, knowing their side had a few tricks up their sleeve.
At the kick off it was the zees who all lined up close to the launch line ready to pounce on the ball. The Pretty Boys left their star guard, Aladdin Ribsnapper on the bench, along with their goblin jack, Slithey Finebreak. They set a jack deep in sweeping defensive role, while the guards dominated the centre of the pitch. The first rush for the zees saw them move in to try to obstruct the Pretty Boys jacks but an early fumble gave the Pretty Boys the chance to pounce.
Ignoring the ball, the Pretty Boys set to work to find a zee and dismantle him. Orx guard, Brok Bilge, was the main weapon, pushing one zee towards the wall and knocking him down with the assistance of his goblin team mate. With the zee on the ground, Bilge couldn’t resist the urge to stick the boot in, and the zees appealed for a foul to be called for the stomp. The referee agreed and Bilge was off for a few rushes. The target of his iron clad left boot was left uninjured (much to Bilge’s despair).
It seemed to the crowd there that that moment triggered something for the zees. Something snapped and they went into a frenzy. Over the next few rushes, the zees swarmed all over the Pretty Boys - biting, kicking, spitting it was all there, and the crowd loved it.
Bilge’s departure lead to the introduction of Ribsnapper, and while that saw one zee laid out, soon it was Ribsnapper who was mobbed by the zees and knocked to the ground.
With the game descending into a mid pitch brawl, The Collector (a goblin jack for the Pretty Boys) picked up the ball. The ball, however, shattered and the resulting relaunch of the ball smashed into one of the zees, who was in the launch zone. He was uninjured but found himself on the ground at the feet of an orx guard and the ball scattered clear of the melee that was ensuing. The Collector, seeing the opportunity, scooped up the ball and set sail for the undefended backfield corner of the pitch, near the zees bench. Pursuit came from the zees and support for The Collector loomed in the form of Switchblade, a fellow jack. The Collector pushed his effort too hard though and stumbled, spilling the ball near the zees bench.
The temptation was clearly too much for the zees to resist and the coach pushed one of the subs onto the pitch. He picked up the loose ball and pegged it into the on coming Switchblade. Switchblade went down, but the his calls for a foul to be called on the zees for the Sneak were heeded and one of the zees was sent from the pitch (after some arguing mind you).
With the ball again loose and midfield brawl going the way of the zees (all Pretty Boys were down on the ground excluding The Collector and the defensive jack), The Collector saw it was up to him to save the situation for his side. He snatched up the ball and darted into the 3 point strike zone, slamming home a solid strike and putting his side ahead in the 10th rush.
The relaunch again caused plenty of cheers from the crowd, as the zee who had previously been knocked silly from the relaunch had just stood up again, only to receive another ball to the side of the head, this time sending him to the infirmary. That was the final highlight of the match as brawl continued in the centre of the pitch, with the zees keeping the Pretty Boys down.
A 3 point win to The Smiling Pretty Boys had their coach extremely happy, but it was the zees coach who was most happy. Seemingly he had forgotten about the match and was delighted to have won the fight and had some fun! “We were awesome out there!” he exclaimed. “Did you see the way we went crazy??”
The player of the match was judged by the fans to be Switchblade who had lent some early support to the initial slamming from his guards and then supported The Collector on the sole attacking raid.
Dreadball it seems was the winner on the night, although The Pretty Boys would have something to say about that.