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FALCONS took on Tigers in the final of the inaugural FNB Indoor Touch Tournament. Following the success of the FNB Summer and Autumn Touch Leagues, demand from players led to Guernsey Touch organising a one day indoor touch tournament. ‘Touch is very much an outdoor sport but the enthusiasm from the players for a competition over the winter months meant we decided to experiment a little and organise touch indoors,’ said chair Katrina Bray. Players were asked to register individually and then organisers divided them into six teams. Falcons topped group one after winning both their games, Rockets came second and Spurs were third. In group two, Tigers won both their games to finish top, Kings came second and Wizards third. Falcons and Kings met in semi-final one but it was a one-sided game with Falcons winning 5 – 0 to secure a place in the final. Semi-final two was a closer game with Tigers beating Rockets 3 – 1.

A 12-touchdown spectacular saw Lancaster Dam Busters take the mixed title in the FNB Autumn Touch League. Going into Sunday’s final games, Electric Shocks, who had been strengthened by experienced island players Alec Bailey and Laura Cravo, were ahead of Lancaster Dam Busters on touchdown difference. After winning their last game of the season 8 – 3, Electric Shocks had a comfortable lead with Lancaster Dam Busters needing to finish their game with a lead of at least 10 to take the title. But in the last game of the afternoon, they beat The Pink Panthers 12 – 0 to clinch the title with an overall touchdown difference of just three.

THE three titles in the FNB Autumn Touch League will be decided on Sunday. The eight week league culminates on Sunday with the mixed title almost certainly won by Electric Shocks Mixed but the mens and ladies leagues still up for the taking. In the mixed league, Electric Shocks Mixed have won six of their seven games and with 19 points lead on touchdown difference ahead of Lancaster Dam Burgers who have also won six of their seven games. Martel-Dunn Recruits are in third with 17 points, having won five games and are just ahead of the Guernsey island ladies team on touchdown difference.

GUERNSEY has finished ninth in the mixed league of the European Touch Championship. The island went into the tournament hoping to better on its 2010 rankings when the mixed team took seventh but Guernsey as a whole finished sixth. ‘In 2010, we took four teams to the Euros but this year for a number of reasons including timing and costs, we were only able to take a mixed team. We knew this would have an impact on our overall ranking but we still hoped to improve our mixed position,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray. ‘Obviously it’s disappointing not to achieve our objective but the team has played to the very best of its abilities and is proud to have represented the island. They will come back with renewed focus to look at what we need to do ahead of 2014.

GUERNSEY needs two wins out of two at the European Touch Championship today after torrential rain forced the organisers to restructure the tournament. Games were stopped on Wednesday afternoon due to the weather and there was no action at the event in Treviso, northern Italy, until midday yesterday in order to give the ground time to dry. Having played two games on Wednesday, Guernsey was due to play two yesterday but only the game against Switzerland took place. Guernsey plays France and Italy today and need to win both games to be in with a chance of getting a quarter final place. ‘The weather means the organisers have had to change the tournament format and so now instead of having a second round of pool games before semi-finals and finals, the mixed open teams will play the remaining pool games with the top four from each pool going through to the quarter finals,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray.

TORRENTIAL rain in Italy means organisers of the European Touch Championship have said no games will be played until at least midday today. Yesterday saw the first day of the five-day tournament with Guernsey aiming to retain its sixth place ranking. The mixed team’s first game against current European champions Ireland saw 14 touchdowns being scored in the 40 minute game. The greens scored straight from the tap off with Owain Norman scoring on his international debut for the island. Ireland replied with two touchdowns before Sam Stables intercepted an Irish pass and headed for the touchdown zone to even the score. Ireland took the lead once more before Carly Parrott broke away at the halfway line to finish the first half 3 – 3.

GUERNSEY will be heading to the European Touch Championship next week aiming to maintain its sixth place ranking. After the 2010 Euros in Bristol, Guernsey as a nation was ranked sixth but gained points because it had four teams at the tournament. This time, just a mixed team will represent the island at the five day tournament in Italy. ‘This is the first time since 2004 that we have not sent more than one team but the tournament is longer than ever and unusually is during the school term to avoid the peak summer temperatures,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray. ‘The organisers have also stipulated that teams are there the day before and so we are away for a week, which is a huge commitment in terms of time for every player and it also adds to the expense. We’re lucky to have sponsorship from FNB but players still need to pay hundreds of pounds to attend.

GUERNSEY’S name will finally be engraved on the touch inter-insular trophy after an exciting afternoon of games. For the first time since the competition began in 2005, Guernsey won two of the three games to take the overall title. ‘What an amazing afternoon of touch and an historic day for Guernsey Touch. Every year, we have hoped it would be our year and have been disappointed but we knew our teams were strong this year as there was a good mix of experienced players and newer players who were keen to make their mark,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray. ‘It could literally have gone either way. The tension in the crowd was pretty intense as the minutes ticked away in the deciding game but Guernsey held on and there was a pretty loud cheer when the final whistle blew.’

WITH one week of the FNB Summer Touch League left, two of the winners have already been decided. Lancaster Dam Busters will take the Mixed B trophy and Electric Shocks the Mixed C honours but the winners of Mixed A, the Men’s and the Ladies’ divisions will be decided on the last night. ‘It’s been another great season and it’s good to see that we have three divisions without a clear winner which gives teams everything to play for as we reach the final week,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray. ‘This was the first year that the mixed teams stayed in the same division for the whole season and it’s been a huge success as the teams have had far more competitive games each week. We have seen an increase yet again in the standard of play across all the divisions and we’re thrilled with the way the season has gone as we have had even more players taking part than in previous years.’

GUERNSEY will be hoping that the home advantage will give them the touch inter-insular title for the first time in the tournament’s eight year history. The annual event, which sees the men’s, ladies and mixed teams from each island compete, has been won by Jersey since it first began in 2005 but last year’s games were the closest yet with Guernsey winning the ladies 3-2, losing the men’s 3 -1 and the mixed 9 - 6. ‘Touch has been played in Jersey for far longer than it has in Guernsey but despite that the gap between the two islands has been closing year on year. Last year’s games were incredibly close and it was hard to see which team was going to win until the final whistle. The results could so easily have been the other way,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray. ‘We’re hoping that this year will be Guernsey’s year as all three teams have been training hard and are determined to keep the trophies.’

THE five divisions in the FNB Summer Touch League are wide open at the halfway point. For the first time, 20 mixed teams were divided into three divisions based on their performance in the 2011 league and will play each other twice over the course of the 12 week 2012 season. ‘Historically the mixed teams have been divided into three leagues at the start of the season and then halfway through are regrouped depending on their success. Now that the sport is firmly established, we felt we could change the format to increase the level of competition as teams are now in divisions which are more evenly matched,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray.

Monkey Mayhem won the Men’s Cup in the recent Channel Islands Stock Exchange Club Championship. The team played Galaxy and at full-time, the score was 3 – 3 forcing the game to a dropoff. Neither team scored from their first possession of the ball but Monkey Mayhem eventually crossed into the touchdown zone to take the trophy with a 4 – 3 win. Left to right..... Mark ‘ Sharky’ Bristowe Prefers playing at night to avoid the sun, Sharky struggles with injury but is a dedicated player and puts in the effort and the pace despite the pain. Chris Goddard Been playing for a number of years but quietly been climbing the ladder and is now an important part of the Guernsey Touch committee as well as captain of the Guernsey Mixed team heading to the European Championship. A dedicated player who makes a big impact on the field without drawing attention to himself.

THE five divisions in the FNB Summer Touch League are wide open at the halfway point. For the first time, 20 mixed teams were divided into three divisions based on their performance in the 2011 league and will play each other twice over the course of the 12 week 2012 season. ‘Historically the mixed teams have been divided into three leagues at the start of the season and then halfway through are regrouped depending on their success. Now that the sport is firmly established, we felt we could change the format to increase the level of competition as teams are now in divisions which are more evenly matched,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray.

GUERNSEY teams scooped two out of three trophies at this year’s CISX Channel Islands’ Championship. The two-day tournament saw teams from Guernsey, Jersey and the UK taking part with more than 150 players competing. ‘It was another successful tournament with a very high standard of touch. The visiting teams increases the competitiveness of the tournament as it allows local teams to play against teams that they are unfamiliar with. The reputation of the CISX Channel Islands’ Championship is growing all the time and our aim is to continue growing it and attracting more teams from across Europe to the island,’ said Guernsey Touch chair,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray.

CRUSADERS cruised into the final of FNB Super League and will take on Hawks in what is the culmination of the first league of Guernsey Touch’s 2013 season. A 10 – 4 win over Reptiles in the semi-finals secured a place in the final for Crusaders where they will meet Hawks who beat Warriors 4 – 3 in a closely fought game. ‘The FNB Super League is the perfect way of starting the season as it gives players the opportunity to play alongside people they wouldn’t normally and learn new skills which they can share with their regular sides,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray. Unlike the FNB Summer and Autumn Touch Leagues, which run in a traditional league format with teams entering as a whole, the FNB Super League sees players registering as individuals and then being divided into four teams.

THE first league of Guernsey Touch’s 2013 season reaches the semi-finals stage on Sunday. The FNB Super League was introduced last year as a way of launching the season and offering an opportunity for players to compete at a more competitively even standard. ‘The FNB Summer and Autumn Touch Leagues are run in a traditional format with teams entering as a whole and so the standard is very different when you compare the experienced teams to those who are relatively new to the sport. The FNB Super League is different in that players enter individually and then are divided into four teams of relatively equal standard,’ said chair of Guernsey Touch Katrina Bray. ‘Our ultimate aim is to encourage players to work closely with people they wouldn’t normally be in a team with and learn from one another. They will then take the skills they have learnt from the FNB Super League and share them with their usual league teams.’

GUERNSEY Touch starts its 2012 season next week with a new league. The FNB Super League will see more than 60 players divided into four teams to compete in an eight week competition. ‘The FNB Summer and Autumn Touch Leagues are run in a traditional format with teams entering as a whole. The FNB Super League will be different in that players have entered and then been divided into four teams of equal standard,’ said chair of Guernsey Touch Katrina Bray. ‘The aim of the league is to provide players with the opportunity of playing with players they wouldn’t normally, share skills and then hopefully take those skills back to their usual league teams and improve the standard of touch being played.’ The four teams called Eagles, Flames, Sabres and Sharks will each play each other twice before the semi-finals and finals.