Oxford University visited Amsterdam for their end of season tour, bringing with them 15 men and 6 ladies ready for some footy and lots of Amsterdam madness!
The main fixture saw a 10-a-side game of 20 minute quarters take place on the Grandstand pitch at SportPark De Eendracht. With a mixed bag of weather, from bitterly cold and windy to crack open the sunscreen. It was clear that the team who made best use of the conditions would be in pole position for the win. The first quarter was an even affair, with neither team really stamping their authority on the game and the Devils, kicking against the wind, taking a slender lead into the first break. In the second quarter things really started to open up for the Devils and they made sure they took advantage of the wind, kicking 7 goals in the quarter and taking a commanding 43 points lead into the main break. From there the game was the Devils to lose. Oxford fought hard in the third term and applied some good pressure in the middle but weren’t able to reduce the deficit on the scoreboard and the Devils lead by 51 points at the three quarter time. During the fourth quarter the Devils kicked with another 7 goals, however Oxford didn’t let them have it completely their own way with some big hits still being laid in the last term. The Devils came out victorious 20.19 (139) to 7.6 (48).
Next up was the Mixed Game, with three of the Oxford Ladies donning Devils jerseys for the chance to face off against their team mates. The format was 9-a-side non-contact footy, with each team being joined by six men from the main fixture. This was truly a game of two halves with Oxford racing to a half time lead of 15 points with some great footy on show by the ladies and accurate goal kicking. The Devils turned things around in the second half, showing off their silky skills and took the lead with less than two minutes left on the clock. Oxford then turned on the magic to kick a great team goal and the scores were level with 42 seconds remaining. The clock seemed to slow down (well, at least to the Devils fans on the sidelines) and Oxford were applying some great pressure, the Devils defence doing everything they could to keep Oxford at bay. As the clock ticked, 3, 2, 1 – Oxford couldn’t find a clean enough possession to get a shot on goal and the final siren sounded. The first draw of the season, and what a game it was. Frantic play at the end to get a winner, but to no avail. The final score ended up Amsterdam Devils Mixed 6.6 (42) to Oxford University Mixed 6.6 (42).
After the game we hosted a BBQ with mouth watering burgers, hot dogs and potato salad on offer. This was devoured before a #nofilter photo could be taken unfortunately but the food was definitely enjoyed by one and all. Followed by a presentation for the Best On Ground and Hard Nut from each side in the Men’s fixture and the two Best On Grounds in the mixed fixture (see below for the winners). A mini boat race was the prize for the award winners, with Oxford showing their boat race experience winning by one person, in a three person race. Sensational viewing!
Both teams then headed to Drovers Dog (Dog 3) for a social event that consisted of more drinking games than anyone could keep track of. It was at Dog 3 where Oxford challenged the Devils to an eight person boat race. Chests were puffed out and there were death stares across the table, but none of that mattered as Oxford continued their strong form with another victory by one person. The Devils were clearly gutted but couldn’t take anything away from what was clearly an experienced boat race team!
A fantastic day of footy and socialising was had by all. Look out for the return fixture next season, and the Devils making improvements in their boat race form!
Devils BOG: Julian Poole
Devils Hard Nut: Reinier Jacco Maarten Vriend
Oxford BOG: Sean Morris
Oxford Hard Nut: Wande McCunn
Ladies BOGs: Liz Murray (Devils) & Emma Coulson (Oxford)
Written by Neil Cooke for AFL Europe