Pulling The Flag

GB men get Euro 7th; women 8th

GB’s men claimed 7th place after a rough start to their final day of European Championship action, while the women added another victory to their tally to grab 8th spot.

The men’s team had already improved on their 9th-place World Cup showing, but their dreams of a podium finish died early. They qualified for the last eight of the competition with a win over Slovenia yesterday (Saturday), but a loss to Germany later that day meant they’d be facing the highest seed in Group B. And the Danes put on a flag football masterclass in their early clash, dominating GB in a 46-0 win.

A confident Denmark side calmly picked out receivers all over the field, while their defenders popped up with picks at crucial times to disrupt GB’s response. After a devastating first half, Denmark eased away in the second to tie up a semi-final clash against Israel.

After that setback, they regrouped for a battle for 5th with Italy. In what was described as a “fractious” encounter, the physical Italians built on a 13-6 halftime lead to win it 25-12. Tim Thomas and Michael Bradley-Banszki hauled in TDs. Rich Cooling picked up an interception and Kevin Woods got a sack.

The Lions wrapped up their tournament with a win, however. Facing the French in the 7th place playoff, they claimed a close-fought tie 35-13. While the scores were level at 13 at the half, GB got the win thanks to touchdowns by Tim Thomas (2), Kenny Bello, Michael Bradley-Banszki and Fraser Thomson, plus XPs by Bello (3) and Kinder Mann, and a Kevin Woods safety. Jamie Doak claimed two sacks, while Matt Wilkinson collected an interception and a sack.

Pic by Jimmy Thomson

Pic by Jimmy Thomson

GB’s women found themselves in the 7th-9th playoff after their three days of league competition. That put them in the mix with Spain and the Swiss, who they’d beaten for their first ever tournament win the day before.

The first game was a rematch of their first game against the hosts. The first encounter saw nerves get the better of GB, as they fell to a crushing 47-0 defeat. It was a different story this time around, as GB held Spain to two touchdowns in the first half and scored two of their own in the second. While the final score was 26-13 to Spain, GB demonstrated they’d grown in confidence and were a better team going out than the one that walked in.

Pic by Jimmy Thomson

Pic by Jimmy Thomson

Switzerland lost 44-0 to Spain in the other match of the round robin, which meant that 8th place was up for grabs in their final match of the tournament against Switzerland. The Brits had opened their tournament account with a 35-12 win on the Saturday, and went one better this time around. Four unanswered touchdowns enabled them to claim their first shutout in tournament football, wrapping up a 26-0 win.

This year’s tournament featured solid growth for the men’s team, who took some good teams to the wire in Group A. It also saw a baptism of fire for the women’s side in their first outing, as a young team recovered from a gruelling start to tournament life, re-grouping and ending on a high.

Denmark proved the class of the men’s tournament, demolishing Austria 52-8 in the final. It wasn’t all bad for the Austrians though. They handed out a beating of their own in the women’s event, winning 45-15 against France.

Only one of GB’s games was livestreamed today. You can watch the men’s 46-0 loss to Denmark, and many of GB’s other tournament matches using the playlist below.

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply