Match Report – Friday 23rd October 2015 – By Joe Healey

Doha Kangaroos vs Abu Dhabi Falcons

The Abu Dhabi Falcons flew successfully and majestically into the new season with a hard-fought, but deserved victory, versus the Doha Kangaroos last weekend. After a sizzling summer schedule of sweat and tears, the boys did John proud despite a few lungs nearly bursting in the final quarter.

The paparazzi were out in force on Thursday night, looking for the usual Falcon skull-duggery on the streets of Abu Dhabi, but no such controversy was to be found, with each Falcon tucked up in bed with biscuits and warm milk by 10.30pm. So the 7am airport rendez-vous was like a walk in the park, with only Benjamin Coleman attempting to go back to bed by accidentally misplacing his passport and boarding pass twice. Coffee, toast and eggs left the Falcons perfectly prepped for the in-flight video-Millionaire quiz frenzy, and a good luck message from the Etihad pilot.

Upon arrival, Josh managed to remember his luggage this time, Smurf quickly assessed the local Tinder spread, so all systems go to Doha Rugby Club. Scorching sunshine at the venue, the grandstand was filling up as the Falcons jogged out for a thorough 15mins warm up.

Quarter 1 – Instant ball-in-hand for sun-tan specialist Nick Tassell who looked for Tex in the left pocket. I glanced away for a few seconds introducing myself to my opposite number, and suddenly possession had switched. A couple of dodgy bounces and the Kanga’s had taken the lead. But the Falcons instantly knocked over a couple of their own, Zacharius Moon getting off the mark for the first of many. Super Steve enjoyed plenty of ball-touching early on, benefitting from good leads in the front line. A few Tommy-Guns runs over halfway had me feeling comfortable at the rear. An entertaining 26 points each at quarter time.

Quarter 2 – A couple too many lemonades later that evening must have confuzzled my memory of Q2, but the papers show 3 more Falcon goals taking us into the lead, Crazy starting to feed those around him, and a conceded penalty from a wound-up Joey who was replaced by steel ribs JT to shore up the backline with his experience.

Quarter 3 – A flip-reverse-it in the centre gave Britain’s finest Joey a little tap in the ruck so Crazy could wander the wilderness of the frontline. Possession was good for the Falcons with haircut-expert Danny, and most-complicated-name-contender Steve Smith, showing superb attitude in snaffling possession from the deck, priceless work in such stifling conditions. Tass remained dominant around the action areas despite a chip to the skull, and I distinctly remember Simi and Ed putting a couple of ferocious tackles to further hamper the Kangas. This was a fantastic team effort. After a touch of rough stuff in the middle with the Kanga’s ruckman, it was rumoured the young chap questioned the style of Joey’s beard, to which our Brit retorted his dislike of the Doha clubhouse architecture, so they duly had a spot of pushy – shuvvy to settle things. All round Falcon tenacity had jumped by a fair few percent, commentators suggesting this was the key quarter.

Quarter 4 – Tired bodies in the final session, an Aussie leg-corker for Joey, Crazy and Smurf. But that summer effort was about to pay off. A couple more goals for Tex and Zac, even Danny F zooming through for a boot. The scorecard says Else: 1 goal, good grief can it be true!? Tru-dat as they say on the street, Crazy took his time and drilled it between the sticks as the Falcons smelt a victory. The aforementioned Kanga’s ruckman tried to hump Steve late on, with Ali and Danny in close attention, but the resulting free kick allowed our B.O.G to take breath, have a look, think of England and hammer it confidently home to seal the win. Brothers in arms at the final whistle as the Falcons ran out 87 – 74 winners.

Goals: Z.Moon 6 / S.Spencer 3 / N.Tassell 1 / D.Else 1 / D.Ferrari 1 / T.Roberts 1 (surely J.Walker had 2, but Pres says they have been lost and forgotten…)

A good ol’ sing-song in the bathtubbs after the game with dubious knowledge of our Club Lyrics. The Falcons Boat-Race victory has currently received 42 million ‘likes’ on Snapgrind, but we can have another practice sesh at halftime in the Aus vs NZ World Cup Final. Excellent beer buying skills from all concerned, Mark’s wife Dionne and M.I.A silver-Lionel particularly impressive. The Falcons B.O.G Steve, with his manager Aiden, departed to glorious applause and were swiftly if not illegally followed early, by Ed, BC, Simi, Tommy and Ali. A few minutes of two-step on the dancefloor from Man of the Night Mark Potter. Luckily the sun set to conceal our ruckman’s evening entertainment, but whilst refusing dinner and drinking with an alcohol-intolerance ailment, luckily for him what goes on tour….

Post-game CORRECTIONS!

J.Walker 2 / D.Ferrari 1 / Z.Moon 4 / D.Else 1 / S.Spanner 3 / T.Roberts 1 / N.Tassell 1

(after Presidente had a stewards enquiry with the video evidence, he also mentioned fines for Z Moon for claiming 6 goals)

All the pics are on Falcons Facebook

For the World Footy News article, about the win, click here.

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