0204 – Feb 16

OK, after a big bit of late inspiration, here we go

Mailbag

Chantal Crabeels, Brussels

“For the moment, Sébastien Trouillez is not going to play in 2012. But things can change”

Well, there goes one of my ‘players to watch’! He’ll definitely be missed if he’s out. In fact, if I had known that earlier…

Andy Brutyn, Ostend

“(Tribes v Angels) will be one hell of a game!! I’m looking forward how you’re going to let us know how we are going to lose”

… I would have had the Tribes at 2 and the Angels at 3. But, it is what it is. Perhaps I’ll just pick a draw! No, I won’t take the easy way out. I still have a few days to try and figure out what’s going to happen.

Benedict Vermaut, Ostend

“I got a question, will the level of football in belgium be good enough to be featured in front of a 1500 spectator crowd?”

It was good enough for 1250 people last year, so I figure it will be for 1500 too! I think it’s pretty well known that finals are (almost) never the prettiest games, sometimes the fear of losing is stronger than the drive to win and teams get a bit conservative. But I don’t doubt that the level of football here can justify such a crowd, I think the better question is “Are there 1500 people who can watch a football game here and understand what they’re looking at?”, because, sitting in the stands last year, as I was, it’s obvious that a lot of people can’t follow what’s going on on the field.

Dieter Eerens, Ostend/Puurs

“I have a question: Who is the best Dieter in the FFL?… Just because competition brings out the best (and worst) in me!”

I think it’d be safe to say that you’re definitely the number one Dieter as far as the pre-season rankings go, however, the season is long, so don’t ease up!

Belgian Bowl suggestion of the week

At half time of the Australian Football League Grand Final, they have a race with normally one player from each team to see who’s the fastest player in the league. Perhaps this can be an idea for the Belgian Bowl organisors. It’s quick, easy and shouldn’t cost anything. Nice idea, Benedict Vermaut.

Pre-season

Apparently the Brussels Bulls got clubbed by the Lelystad Commanders in a pre-season game, causing some people to think that perhaps their ranking is just a bit too high. In my experience, pre-season games don’t count for anything. One year we (the Tribes, back in the day) lost a pre-season game against the Liege Red Roosters 12-7. We were missing a few players, our coach wasn’t there, and we almost lost another teammate as Alain Debaillie had a heart attack on the sideline and was taken away to the hospital. Needless to say, we went undefeated that year and won the Belgian Bowl (I think it was the year of the 25-20 game against the Black Angels). A loss can be good for team, at times. And sometimes coaches have other plans for pre-season games other than just trying to win, so I’m not too concerned about the form of the Bulls leading into their first game which is not until March 11.

Also, questions have been raised about the teams’ ability to prepare for the season given the freezing weather of the past fortnight. I think there might be a bit of an effect, and we might see some sloppy football played on the first weekend of the season. Teams should be busy with working on the details at this stage of the pre-season, all of the basic stuff had better be in the players’ heads already! Given the defensive nature of some of the teams playing in 10 days time, we could just see an interception-fest.

Outro

So that’s just about all there is to say this week. Monday we’ll take a look ahead at the first games of the season!

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