European Ultimate Championships Days Four & Five

Friday

In their first game of the day Ireland went up against a strong Belgium team in an attempt to secure themselves a place in the quarter finals.

The girls had recently played this team at the international tournament ‘Windmill Windup’ and as such, both teams knew what to expect from one another. It was Belgium who took an early lead in the game going 3-1 up in the first ten minutes. At this point a strong crosswind began to pick up and as the game progressed, this proved very difficult for both teams to overcome. This fast-paced game remained tight the whole way through but despite Ireland’s best efforts they were unable to bridge the gap that had been created early on. The game finished with a score line of 12-9 to Belgium and this, unfortunately, meant that Ireland were out of the running for a spot in the top eight.

Following this game the girls were placed in a four team pool with Sweden, The Netherlands and Denmark in a bid for 9th to 12th place. They were then scheduled to play Sweden at 5pm that evening. Determined not to let their pervious loss dampen their spirits the girls went out and played what was arguably one of the most exciting games they had played all tournament. The Swedish girls started well and after just 20 minutes they were up by four points. However, the Ireland girls kept up their intensity and by half time they were trailing by just two points. After half time Ireland really came back fighting and with some beautiful zone defence they managed to level the score at 10 all. With just half an hour left to play for both teams battled it out to the very end but unfortunately it was the Swedes that eventually emerged triumphant with a score line of 17 points to 15. Highlights from this game can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ezVI9R9UJbw&feature=youtu.be

Saturday

This final day of the tournament proved to be a heart breaking one for the Irish ladies who suffered two sudden death losses

In the first game of today the girls, once again, faced the Netherlands who had just lost to Denmark the previous afternoon. The girls were hungry for another chance to beat this experienced and well-oiled team but unfortunately they got off to a shaky start. The Netherlands took an early lead and Ireland found themselves trailing four point to nine. However, the game was far from over and after some fantastic play by the Irish girls they found themselves up by 13 points to 12 with just ten minutes left to play for. The match went to universe point at 14 all but after a long and hard fought point The Netherlands were crowned eventual winners, the final score standing at 15 points to 14. Despite the unfortunate loss, the girls must be commended for their sheer determination as they kept fighting throughout the entire game and managed to pull out a spectacular comeback in the end.

In their final game of the tournament the Irish ladies took on hosts, Denmark, who were already at an advantage due to the fact that they were playing on home ground. Undaunted by this, Ireland went in to the game determined to finish off the tournament on a high and they most certainly did not disappoint. As if the excitement from the previous game was not enough after a hard fought 100 minutes this game also went to universe point at 14 all. It really was anybody’s game but unfortunately it was Denmark who took the final point after a long and gruelling battle. The game finished at 15 points to 14.

Emma Healy