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EUCF 2016 – the British teams: Reading

EUCF, EUCF2016, Mixed, Previews, Reading Ultimate

The European Ultimate Championship Finals begin today! Ahead of the tournament starting, Sean Colfer takes a look at the Mixed division, often the hardest to predict given the lack of high-level Mixed tournaments around Europe. First up; the two-time national champions, Reading.

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Mixed Tour 2015: from Cardiff to Salford

#ukumt2, Black Eagles, Bristol, GB, Glasgow, mixed tour, news, Previews, Reading Ultimate, Shiny Happy Meeples, Thundering Herd, u23

Martyn Brown brings us the second piece in his coverage of the 2015 Mixed Tour

 It’s safe to say that Cardiff will be a tournament most people won’t forget. Whilst Saturday was challenging, it was no more difficult than the conditions we experienced in Nottingham or Cheltenham for Mixed Tours 2 & 3 respectively last year. However, Sunday delivered some of the most difficult weather that we have had to play in for a number of years with wind, rain and mud in plentiful supply.

Despite the conditions the games got under way in earnest. Pool-play threw up few surprises with both GB teams topping their respective groups. The GB U23 teams also impressed, improving on seeding and giving themselves a chance to move up the order next tour. Ireland Mixed comfortably topped Pool C after a convincing victory over Thundering Herd 1. Pool D provided the most interesting results with Shiny Happy Meeple comfortably topping the group ahead of both Black Eagles and Brighton Breezy, with returning players helping to show that they are one of the strongest contenders at Tour this season.

UKU Regionals Preview – South East

Brighton, DED, Previews, Reading Ultimate, Release, UKU Nationals, UKU Regionals

Brighton Echo player Miles Tincknell finishes of the regionals previews with a hotly contested South East, who have 3 bids and will compete on Sunday.

With only three places up for grabs the SE region will be experiencing a heated game to go while the top two battle for the prestige of taking the region.

DED (Dog Eat Disc) were last years years victors of the region after finishing a comfortable 4th at Tour in 2012, however a stronger and more fleshed out squad from Brighton brought it back hard at Nationals, beating them comfortably 15-5 while DED where were lacking some key players. This year they have slipped 6 places in the tour rankings down to 10th place, but will still be fighting for that vital qualification if they are again to establish themselves as the biggest contenders in the regionals tournament. With them placing in a mixed squad into the region, it is clear that DED’s focus is not just on the Open side of things. It will be interesting to see how they split their guys between the two teams, trying to find a balance can be difficult. DED will be looking to get comfortable with the mixed team but should be doing so without cutting too much depth from the DED open squad. If this team is to continue it’s growth, it’s important that it tries hard to find this balance and not sacrifice the few spots that are on offer, which will be highly contested from Reading and Brighton Echo.
DED at T2, but which men will go play mixed from this bunch? Photo courtesy of Andrew Moss.


Brighton City, long time standing club and rumors suggest; the biggest Ultimate club in the UK, are on a mission that transcends that of single tournaments and instead places itself on the timeline of decades. With discussions rife about sorting out who will play Breezy, Echo and City, it is clear that Brighton City are thinking of nothing else but a Nationals qualification, a given seeing that they finished 4th at Tour over all this year, rising two places from 6th last year. However who they face in the final could be a different story. Trying out a new approach to Ultimate, City will be looking to see how their offense fares compared to last year not just in the region but all the way to Nationals. With Brighton putting up their best ever performance against Clapham this year (15-11), it will be interesting to see how they contend for the Euros spot as their team grows in strength and depth. 


Brighton Echo, a team that is seen as more of an extension of the first team within the club than a second team will be looking to prove a point in the SE. Meeting defeat upon defeat against Reading, they will be looking for revenge, but with Reading being comfortable in their victories, surely that 3rd place is destined for them and them only. Echo, however, will be sporting their strongest team yet, coupled with a few new tricks in their arsenal, their aim is to solely prove that Reading caught them on a bad few days. 

Reading as previously mentioned had comfortable victories against Echo this year and broke into A-tour after Tour 2, only to drop back out of it in tour 3. Proving that they are on the cusp of promotion, they finished top of B-tour, taking 17th, 4 places up on Echo who stole 21st from EMO 2 (a team that had previously given them trouble).  Going from strength to strength this year, they are in a prime position to take their game up to the next level. Lacking Mark Bignal (who is going to be playing for DED Mixed), their Captain and so goes without saying, a key player, the rest of the players will be looking to step up to the mark and prove that their depth is withstanding. 

Release have seen key players lost to Wessex last year and a few to Brighton over the years, they will be looking to rebuild their team back to full capacity; with regionals providing a perfect opportunity to do that. Sporting lots of fresh talent from Skunks, it will be important to see if these players build the club loyalty to stay or will their talent be head hunted by some of the bigger clubs as the younger players look to make plays to get noticed. Possible exciting moments from this team.

Pier Pressure being another part of the Brighton contingent will be looking to bring a hard game, with a lot of experience and ability, they have the potential to cause some upsets to the rankings. Wanting to further themselves in the regionals scene, Pier Pressure will be looking to bring a hard game to whomever they play. Expect tough defence and a hectic offence from these guys, who proved last year that given the right moment and their years of playing together, they can upset teams!

Team Shark and Guildford will also be appearing, hoping to utilise this as an opportunity to match up against the big players and teams, taking from it what they can in a hope to continue the growth they have been experiencing so far. 


Predictions for this region?

1. Brighton City
2. DED
3. Brighton Echo
4. Reading
5. Pier Pressure
6. DED Mixed
7. Release
8. Guildford
9. Team Shark

So that’s it, all the regional competitions will take place over the weekend. Follow the action on twitter! DP @ tSG. 

Tour 2 Review – B Tour

B Tour, Flump, nottingham, Open Tour, Reading Ultimate, The Brown, Tournament Reports, u23, UKUT2
Matthew Parker from the ever rising Flump gives us his review of B tour at UKU OWT2.

After the fantastic weather of London’s Calling, it was more than any self-respecting UK Ultimate player could ask for two tour weekends of good weather, and we were not disappointed. Winds hitting up to 20mph on Saturday, and even more on the Sunday, changed the dynamic of the ultimate, but still producing fantastic games all across B-tour.
Owing to the events of the previous tour, teams were now seeded in closer groups, limiting each teams’ ability to rise and fall. The introduction of newly promoted C-tour team, Flump, into the top 8 and an opportunity to qualify into A-tour, sent rustlings of frustration through many seasoned B-tour teams. Furthermore, as a result of teams dropping out of A-tour and B-tour, ABH, Vision, and Bristol Open, who finished in the bottom 3 at London’s Calling, had another opportunity to hold their place in B-tour. Norwich’s Mustard, although being pipped to the final promotion place last tour, were given an opportunity to join Birmingham and Devon 2 in B-tour. 
Murray from Ireland U23 takes is forced by Reynolds from Brighton Echo. Photo courtesy of Andrew Moss.

So the stage was set in a blustery Nottingham, with newly promoted teams attempting to cement themselves in B-tour, with many teams fighting to do the same and hopefully aim for the coveted A-tour spots being battled out by pools E and F. Saturday morning saw pools E and F play their first two games. Newly promoted Flump and Reading enjoyed their first games of the day with teams trading down-wind for the first few points of the game while they attempted to find their feet. Even though Flump saw the early break, Reading fought back and took the game 11-9. Simultaneously The Brown played the newly demoted Tooting Tigers on the crosswind pitches -The Brown put in a fantastic performance to dispatch the top seed 11-6. The subsequent games saw Tooting Tigers lose in a tight game with Reading 9-11, and Flump pip The Brown in an excellent game which saw fantastic plays by each side, including layouts, hammers, huge grabs, and ending with a single upwind break collected by Flump. 

The final games of Pool E saw an incredible game between Reading and The Brown, which traded upwind almost the entire game, with Reading drawing a small advantage midway, but The Brown pulling back in fantastic style in sudden death to take the game. The game between Tooting Tigers and Flump, saw the London rivals battle out a gritty match with more stoppages than an American Football game. Calls lasting a couple of minutes a piece as players discussed the events of the pitch – sometimes in raised tones – put a damper on the eventual Flump win. With so much at stake in each game at this stage in a tour, it is a testament to both teams’ spirit that in the huddle afterwards, a calm discussion took place between the captains to address some of the issues that had occurred. Each team looked to consider what had been said, and take those considerations into their coming games. Overall, this left Pool E in a confusing state, with The Brown, for the second tour in a row, losing out in a three way tie for the top two positions to Reading followed by Flump, who had proved their worth at the top of B-tour. 


Meanwhile, in Pool F, Ireland U23 were showing their colours, beating each team by at least 5 points. Jest Ridisculous 1 came second in the group, after losing to Ireland U23, but beating Emo 2 by a break, and only beating Brighton Echo in sudden death. The afternoon pools G and H saw newly promoted Devon 2 put out great performances against Mustard – winning by two points – as well as a massive win over ABH.  However, Burro Electro, bemused at not being given the opportunity to fight for promotion, put in a great first day with a series of wins in their group. Newly promoted Birmingham saw an enjoyable first day in B tour, with wins over Bristol and Vision, however losing to GB U20s who confidently dispatched Bristol but lost to Vision (whom they beat by one in the final placement game). 

Sunday saw an increase in the wind and rain as only Nottingham can provide. The first games of the day entertained crossovers in the middle eight, with EMO 2, Burro Electrico, Brighton Echo, and The Brown all cementing their place in the top half of B tour. The semi-finals saw Ireland U23 and Jest Ridisculous 1 play Flump and Reading respectively. In a hard-fought game, Ireland emerged as the deserved winners over Flump, managing to resist a heroic comeback in the cap. Despite being down at the half, Jest Ridisculous also pushed through in an exciting win against Reading, securing themselves a place in the final and a shot at A-tour, leaving old flames Reading and Flump to battle it out for the final qualification slot. 
B tour movers. Courtesy of Wayne Retter.

The captain of Portland Rhino said in a recent Nationals campaign “The hardest thing to do in a tournament is beat the same team twice” [ED: see Chasing Sarasota], and Flump put a claim to that, as they immediately took a break and made Reading work for every downwind point. However, after working exceptionally hard into the wind, Reading managed to take down a dubious looking end-zone hammer and felt the turn of the tide. From there they pushed on to take the half, and finally the game in an A-tour worthy performance over Flump, who were prevented at being the first ever team to be promoted in consecutive tours. 

Ireland U23 finished off their fantastic tour with another win over Jest Ridisculous, and were crowned worthy winners of B-tour. we wish them all the best for their travels across the pond for World U23s next month. Elsewhere, Tooting Tigers were able to pick up their first win of the season against Vision, only to subsequently lose to Devon 2 who have really enjoyed securing their place as a B-tour team this tour. The Brown and Burro Electro, in a fantastic match now look set to attempt a bid at A-tour for next season, while Birmingham have hopefully sealed a place at next tour. 
More to come! Remember to like, share and comment. DP @ tSG.