Blood Bowl Match Report: The Shining Exemplars vs The Shin Kickers
The Shining Exemplars (High Elves) vs The Shin Kickers (Dwarves)
The Dwarf team’s sponsors had pulled out all the stops for their initial game, cramming their dugout full of Bloodweiser Babes. All the attending fans certainly seemed appreciative of the gesture, with their support spurring on both sides on several occasions during the match.
The High Elves opened the scoring, by choosing to receive the ball, and after a few turns, putting together a winning move with a hand off, pass and then run in for the first score of the match for Gethin Topazil. The precise kick off handed possession to the Dwarves right on the line of scrimmage, who slowly pushed their way forward with a tight, rolling cage. But with time running out, Shin Kickers Blitzer Reg was forced to leave the safety of the Dwarven cage, and along with just two team mates, make a run for it down the touchline, hoping for a last turn score. With the ball carrier finally exposed, the High Elves struck, and knocked him (and the ball) into the crowd, who then trampled the Dwarf to death. Thinking that they’d escaped conceding, the High Elves were all smiles and high fives, but they hadn’t counted on the fervent Kickers fans, who made a pinpoint pass to throw the ball into the Exemplar’s end zone. Having gone all out to take down poor Reg, all the High Elves could manage to do was to get a tackle zone on the ball. With time about to be called, the Dwarven coach shouted for his players to score; only Trax the runner had the legs to do it, and just as the ref put his whistle to his lips to end the half, he scooped the ball up, and scored an equaliser! One touchdown a piece at half time.
Downhearted, the Shining Exemplars were not looking forward to trying to stop yet another drive from the Dwarven team. It appeared that some sneaky Kickers fan may have slipped into the High Elves dugout at half time, because it seemed that their soles had been greased, and quickly there were two players badly hurt from having fallen over; Gethin Topazil being one of them. He was doubly unfortunate in that he had just picked up the ball from amongst a scrum of dwarves, and was that one dodge roll away from a break-away touchdown. Instead he’ll now miss the next game, and will be forever hampered by the effects of his broken neck. (In fact, it’s been rumoured that his coach might be thinking of releasing him from his contract). After Topazil spilled the ball, the Dwarves strung together a marvellous passing play; a pick up by a runner, handed off to Rich the remaining Blitzer, who then threw it to a Blocker who was waiting, unmarked, way out on the far touchline. Although it took him a while to get there, he eventually scored to put the Dwarves in front.
Attrition was playing its part on the High Elf team, with only seven players left on the field to receive the ball. A wayward kick from the Dwarves helped the attacking team by awarding a touch back; by the end of the turn Einion Rubyheart was deep into the dwarven back field with the ball, shadowed by Blitzer Aneirin Starsight. Dwarven Runner Miles raced back to blitz the Elf Lineman, and succeeded in knocking him down, dispossessing him. Unfortunately for Miles, that action was to be his last, as he died as a result of his heroics. Pausing briefly to pay his respects, Starsight then scooped up the ball, and ran in the equaliser. Two all.
There were two turns left for the Dwarves to try and regain the lead; they arranged two of their quickest players on the halfway line, but knew it would be a tall order to score. Their fans once again came to their aid; annoyed at loosing the lead, an enraged Dwarf threw a huge rock at Starsight, who had to be stretchered off the pitch before the restart. But then the Kickers’ luck deserted them; a double skull block used up the turn’s reroll, before another identical roll took Blocker Terri out of the rest of the game, and suddenly the ball was left alone and unguarded in the dwarven half as a result of the turnover.
Rubyheart and Lion Warrior Evrai Goldenlight both slipped through the Shin Kickers’ defence and raced towards the ball. However, Rich got there first, and picked up the ball. Feeling very exposed, his gaze desperately surveyed the field to look for a target to throw the ball to; Runner Trax had sprinted off downfield out of range, and the rest of the team were either also too far way, swamped in tackle zones or behind the very tall and agile looking Elves. Realising that he would not be able to pull off any passing play, he backed into the corner of the field, and adopted a defensive stance.
Although two Dwarf Blockers managed to sprint and blitz Goldenlight to the ground, Rubyheart was still free; he charged right into Rich, and sent him flying into the crowd. The crowd went mad in their scramble for the ball, the Exemplars’ fans trying to get revenge for the times that the crowd had gone against their team, and the opposing supporters trying to stop them. The ball flew from the sidelines back onto the pitch, bounced into touch again, and got thrown back into the corner of the field. Goldenlight saw this, jumped up, dodged out of the tackle zones of his two attackers, scooped up the ball, and threw a quick pass to Rubyheart. Still standing in the endzone, Rubyheart caught the ball, and won the match in the dying seconds!
Reactions after the game were very much polarised between the two sides; The Shining Exemplars’ coach rewarding Journeyman Gill Pyrite with a place on the team, as it was against him that the Dwarves had caused their unfortunate turnover. Meanwhile, the Dwarven coach was seen furiously scribbling in his brand new Playbook of Grudges; not only had two of his skilled players died, but he also discovered that once all the expenses for the extravagant Bloodweiser Babes had been taken from his winnings, he had only a measly 10K of gold pieces with which to start rebuilding his team.
Pitchside Reporter: Brychan