Day 2 of the Korfball Australia National Club Championships, and as such the championships themselves, has been run and won. The tournament winners, match results, and all the other information regarding the championships can be found on the National Championships hub.
The B grade competition managed to throw up some surprises on the second day of the tournament. Flinders, undefeated on Saturday, dropped their opening match to Newcastle on Sunday, blowing the competition wide open. However, they were able to regain their composure and took out their second match of the day, in doing so ensured they qualified for the final. The day started with Boomers, Newcastle and Sydney all in prime position for the second finals spot, each with a 2 – 1 record from Saturday. Sydney and Newcastle each got a win and a loss on Sunday, but Boomers were good enough to win both their matches, which was enough to elevate them into second position (and only missing out on top on goal difference), and into the final. The final was a tense affair, as is to be expected. While Flinders comfortably won the round-robin match up between these two teams, the tournament experience of Boomers, as well as the experience of the senior Boomers players, started to show, keeping the match close. Ultimately, Boomers were able to be ahead when it mattered most, taking out the B grade championship with a 9-8 victory. Pete Corcoran was awarded the MVP of the final, and deservedly so.
The A grade competition almost started over, after the evenness of the results on Saturday. However, Arista managed to win both of their preliminary matches, ensuring their record would be good enough to see them through to the final. Boomers and Glenelg were scheduled to play the last round robin match of the day, and suddenly, this match became a virtual knockout semi-final. The winner would go through to play Arista, while the defeated team would go home empty handed. This match started extremely tight, but their higher intensity, and some wonderful shooting from the back of the court, saw Boomers emerge victorious. Once again, it was to be old foes Arista and Boomers facing off in the final of a competition. The final started with all the intensity you would expect from two passionate, competitive teams. Arista managed to eke out a small lead, but Boomers were always able to stem the flow of goals, and peg the lead back. Ultimately, at full time, the score was 10 – 10, which meant that once again, a Nationals A grade final between Arista and Boomers was headed to golden goal. Neither team was able to score on their first attack, with the pressure of golden goal amping the crowd noise up to levels rarely seen in Australian korfball circles. Ultimately, Boomers were able to capitalise on their second attack, through captain Brad Marks, sealing the A grade National title. Bethan Channing was the deserved winner of the MVP award for the final.
Once again, the A – B crossover matched were played in wonderful spirits, with the crowd support generally getting behind the B grade sides. While the A grades all emerged victorious again, there is no doubt that the B grade sides involved learnt a lot from the experience, which will hopefully be able to be shown in their respective league matches for the rest of the season. Thanks again to all teams, these matches really were a highlight of the weekend, and a nice change of pace from the cut-throat round robin matches.
We would like to extend our thanks to all the players, coaches, referees and other officials for your conduct throughout the weekend. A tournament is only as good as its participants, and its to your credit the National Club Championships was a fantastic tournament. Thanks also go to the Korfball Australia board, in particular Megan Marks, for the organisation of the tournament, and its successful running. Finally, congratulations go to Boomers, who were able to do the double, its a huge achievement. We look forward to seeing everyone next year, as we do it all again.