A new fundraising initiative for the West Coast Enforcers Wheelchair Rugby program saw nine able bodied teams register to face off in a full day of high octane, full contact Wheelchair Rugby action!
For many able bodied players this was their first time in any kind of wheelchair and what an introduction it was! The players were grinning from ear to ear as they flew up and down the court, smashing into each other, and attempting to learn the skills and tactics of Wheelchair Rugby on the fly.
Over the course of the day each of the teams drastically improved their skills and tactical displays which saw the Wheels of Fortunes’ awesome defence land them first place, while the Wheelie Bin Rollers offensive displays throughout the pool stages had them enter the finals in second place.
It was only fitting that these two teams ended up facing off in the Grand Final, however the game was not without a twist, and perhaps a bit of controversy…
Having lost a player to other commitments during the finals the Wheelie Bin Rollers were forced to call up a ringer to put enough players on court… enter 2014 GIO National Wheelchair Rugby Championship “Best New Talent”, West Coast Enforcer Robyn Lambird.
The introduction of a highly talented and experienced player may have shifted the favourites tag to the Wheelie Bin Rollers leading into the finale in many people’s eyes however the Wheels of Fortune were not prepared to give up their fight to be crowned Champions so easily.
The final began as a tightly contested point-for-point, end to end battle with Robyn at times outpacing and outmanoeuvring her less experienced opposition all on her own, however she was just one player and the Wheels of Fortune could often find an open player elsewhere on the court to ensure the score did not get away from them.
In the second half of the final Wheels of Fortune’s attempts to double-(and at times triple-) mark key opposition threat Robyn saw great results, as they were able to reduce their opponents scoring rate, whilst maintaining their own, eventually coming away the victors of the inaugural Murderball Fundraiser.
As well as being a successful event the day was also a successful fundraiser, raising in excess of $4000!
A huge thank you to all the volunteers who made the day such a big success, UWA Rugby, Mach1, Super IGA Darch and Greenfields Malaga, as well as friends and family of the Enforcers who ran the score bench and the kitchen… and of course ‘Yogi’ Houlis and Nigel Brown who refereed Wheelchair Rugby for about 8 hours straight to ensure the day was possible! Everyone’s contribution to the event made for a fantastic day for all involved.
Congratulations to the Wheels of Fortune; Tom, Angus, Oliver and Chris.
Their strong play throughout the day and brilliant teamwork saw them crowned fitting winners of the tournament.
Congratulations also to UWA Rugby representative “Monkey” (aka “Chook”), whose high work rate and quick adaptation to the skills of the game saw him crowned tournament MVP.