Eight teams...one full-size indoor field with artificial grass...two days of competitive open ultimate ...a location you've never heard of.
This is what you'll find when you get to play 7even, an Open tournament organized by the Hungarian team LOL Ultimate. This year's edition of the tournament took place from 13th to 14th February 2016 in a beautiful town called Gödöllö. It is located some 30km away from Hungary's capital Budapest. Like in the year before, our second open team Play> was lucky enough to get a spot and all of us were really excited about the weekend. Our talented handler/singer/songwriter Dom Reutterer even produced a “7even” cover version of David Bowies original song “Seven” to share his excitement with the world. You can find it here below.
The competitive squad of 11 Play>ers arrived on Friday evening, ready for an intense weekend.
Dominik Reutterer - Seven (David Bowie Cover)
Saturday, 13th February
The first day of the tournament was split into two separate halfs, one “morning pool” and one “afternoon pool”. Not only did we play in the morning pool, we even had the first game of the tournament at 8:00 a.m.! Fresh!
Still, we managed to play a solid offense and defense, resulting in our first victory of the day against Prague Devils. Good start!
Our second game (against CUSB Zero51) was characterized by some amazingly accurate hucks from our handlers and we won that one, too.
The third game of the day should be our first loss of the day. We lost to GSM from Poland. What had happened? The experienced observer immediately recognized that we had not warmed very long before the game. This improper warm up resulted in a devastating lack of focus... This should probably teach us a lesson!
And yet, another setback overshadowed the day: Our rising star Adrian Ernst, FWD>> newcomer for season '16, injured his hand in a spectacular layout attempt. We wish him all the best on his road to recovery! Henceforth, there were only ten play>ers left to compete for the tournament win.
Since we were in the morning pool, our game day ended already at 3 p.m. With Budapest nearby, the whole team was looking forward to spending the evening in the country's capital!
The train brought us right into the center of Budapest, from where we headed towards our first and most rewarding destination of the day: Trofea Grill Restaurant – an 'all you can eat' premium restaurant in the heart of Budapest. What can I say... we had the time of our lives! The selection for the grill was astounding, preceded by a vast variety of starters and followed by tarts, pies, mousses and whatever may come to your mind, it was there. Some of us may still dream about that beef tartar, today...
Anyways! After three hours of delight, we moved on. Strolling along the streets of that beautiful city, we looked for a certain Mojito bar which was said to be worthwhile, guided by Delay. He'll hopefully never decide to navigate a ship, because the crew would hopelessly get lost and eventually die in the middle of the ocean. After more than one and a half hours of search and telephone calls we found the bar, which turned out to be 50m away from our restaurant... and we didn't even order mojitos. Yet, no 500 miles of walk could have ever dampened the mood that night! We were able to catch a glimpse of Budapest's nightlife, before we already had to leave to catch our train home.
Sunday, 14th February
Despite one loss, we had won the morning pool. Therefore, our first game on Sunday was already the semi-final game. Our opponents, the hosts “LOL Ultimate”, were eager for the title on their home court and willing to give us a hard time. The game was close until the end, when we finally managed to score one more break. Play> had made it to the finals!
We were ready to play our final game, which turned out to be against our local rivals from Vienna, TheBigEZ! Four international games for a derby final... we kind of felt like Ash Ketchum, battling all the way through Top Four, just to find his final opponent be his neighbour Gary, who he could have battled all the way back in Alabastia. If you know what I mean... well, it's okay if you don't.
Anyway - we knew that TheBigEZ would represent a real challenge. Their almost 20 men squad comprised many skilled and experienced players, while on our side there were only 9 people left, since we had lost Phil to an ancle injury. We gave everything we had, but at some point our bodies should reach their limits. TheBigEZ played a very solid offense and defense and took advantage of every error on our side. In the second half, we could win back one break, but even though we were close, we finally lost the game 10-12.
But hey, we could still be very satisfied with what we had accomplished that weekend. Starting with 11 players, finishing with 9 players and the 2nd place of a quite competitive 7even Tournament, that's quite something! But what counted even more: We had had an amazing time as a team, on and off the field, in Gödöllö as well as in Budapest in the evening. We had enjoyed great food and drinks as well as inxepensive train rides. We had become witness of the exemplary Hungarian hospitality.
You may have never heard of Gödöllö before, but I promise you, it you ever get to be there, you will never forget it ever again.