Tag Archives: football

World Cup Fever Sweeps Blacktip Island

Blacktip officials hope to avoid rioting during the Caribbean island’s World Cup-inspired football tournament.

Blacktip officials hope to avoid rioting during the Caribbean island’s World Cup-inspired football tournament.

Teams of locals and expatriates representing their native countries will square off this weekend in the opening round of Blacktip Island’s Island Cup football tournament.

“It’s the World Cup in miniature,” Island Cup organizer Frank Maples said. “We’ve teams representing every nationality on the island at present.”

As ever, the Tiperon Islands squad is the prohibitive favorite, followed closely by England and Côte d’Ivoire. In the most intriguing first-round matchup, the Tiperons will face Montenegro in a repeat of last tourney’s semi-final match.

“Montenegrins play dirty, now” Tiperon captain Antonio Fletcher said. “Always have. There’ll be blood on the pitch after that one. But we’re ready for them.”

England, too, has drawn a tough first-round match against dark-horse Tonga.

“On paper, we should have an easy enough match,” England captain Lee Helm said. “We have 20 or so divemasters and barmen to draw from, and there’s only one Tongan on island.

“He’s a feisty git, though. And fast. He made it to the quarterfinals last year. And he doesn’t drink, so that gives him an edge. Sobriety’s a performance-enhancing drug on this island.”

As ever, the United States team is expected to make an early exit.

“They forfeited their first-round match last tournament when they failed to show,” Frank Maples said.

This year, the American side is still nonplussed.

“World Cup? Whatever.” Team USA midfielder Joey Pompano said. “What kind of game lets you end in a tie? Call us when the World Series starts. Or when you’re ready to play real football.”

All matches will be at Tiperon Airways Memorial Stadium.

“‘Stadium’ is strong,” Maples said. “It’s one end of the grass landing strip, really. We schedule matches between the airline’s landings and take offs.”

Organizers hope to avoid the violence of last tourney’s final between Tiperon and Honduras, when fans raged down the island’s street trampling shrubbery, scuffing storm shutters and burning three bicycles.

“Problem was the officiating,” Antonio Fletcher said. “Not to point fingers, you know, but a lot of conch changed hands before that match.”

“We’ve asked the island constabulary to officiate the matches this year,” Maples said. “We’ll also be serving complimentary beer at Diddley’s Landing, making sure the crowd’s there. There’s nothing for them to destroy on a cement pier. And if matters get out of hand, we can simply push the rowdies into the sea.”

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Divemasters Prohibitive Underdogs in Fish Bowl

The Divemasters will battle the Anglers in Sunday’s Fish Bowl grudge match, coinciding with the American Super Bowl.

The Divemasters will battle the Anglers in Sunday’s Fish Bowl grudge match, coinciding with the Super Bowl.

Blacktip Island sports fans are primed for Sunday’s Fish Bowl, pitting island dive staff against local fishermen in a game of American football.

“It’s a long-standing feud,” Anglers captain Jack Cobia said. “Divers think fish are just something to look at. We fishermen actually do something useful with them. The fish, not the divemasters. There’s nothing useful you can do with a divemaster.”

As ever, the Divemasters are prohibitive underdogs, with the Anglers winning all 17 past meetings.

“We’d love to beat the fish killers, but we’ll consider it a moral victory if we can finish the game,” Divemasters’ coach Ger Latner said.

“It’s hard to find enough dive staff sober enough to stand, much less catch a football. Three of them broke their noses in practice just trying.”

The Divemasters outscored the Anglers in last year’s match, but were disqualified for using performance-enhancing substances when large amounts of Red Bull and Midol were found in their water cooler.

As ever, smoking will be permitted on both sidelines.

“The NFL has oxygen tents. We have smoking benches,” Cobia said. “Coolers of beer, too. It makes timeouts more productive. Plus, it’s the only way we can get enough players to turn out.”

The Anglers are expected to run their usual I-Formation offense, with a brutal running game setting up play-action passes.

The Divemasters will experiment with a 1930s-era single-wing attack.

“We call it the ‘Wing-And-A-Prayer,’” Latner said. “We can’t throw. We can’t catch. We can’t block. But we can run like hell. In short bursts, anyway. Especially when someone’s chasing us.”

“The game’s great fun,” Divemaster fan Alison Diesel said. “It’s like one of those old electric football games where you’d flip the switch and the field would vibrate and the players would bash into each other until you switched it off again.”

Mascots will be banned from the sidelines after last year’s towel fight between Fisherman Freddy and Ben the Grouper that spread into the stands.

“That was unfortunate,” Cobia said. “It detracted from the game. The attention should be on the on-field fistfights, not on a couple of costumed yahoos.”

“Ben won fair and square,” Latner said. “And our fans beat the hell out of theirs. This mascot banning nonsense is just a red herring.”

The unofficial over/under line on how many minutes of game time elapse before the first player passes out is 7 ½ minutes.

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