Match Day 4 – Average Joes Vs. the Ungrateful Dead
Match day 4 dawned dull and wet, went on to be mediocre, and after the sun set turned rather dark. In the dark bit at the end racy skaven side Average Joes played out their final group match against a Necromatic Undead team; the Ungrateful Dead, coached by Dave Mc. With a substantial sum in the bank Lord Flasheart (Derek to his special friends) brought a big reserve in to replace the thrower killed in a freak on the ball incident during match day 3. His choice was controversial; a rat ogre named Benedict, and an apothecary rat was soon to follow – his medical qualifications being an ability to ring bells very loudly and hit players with a stick; Lord Flasheart actually considers him over qualified. Even with this re-enforcement the loss of gutter runner Pepper Brooks to injury meant ‘Joes started with only 12 players against a team fielding 14, including an unhealthy spattering of wights (2 of), werewolves (2 of) and a flesh golumn. The bulk of the undead team was made up of ghouls and zombies. For the first time the ratty fans were outnumbered, with 10,000 furry bodies packing the part of the stadium not taken up by 15,000 dead wotsits.
The undead won the toss, and elected to receive in the opening gambit of an eventful game. Unfortunately the ghouls hadn’t practiced picking the ball up beforehand (a reoccurring theme), nor the art of defending the carrier once he (it?) had managed the task. This meant that turn 2 was barely over when linerat Duck flattened the ball-carrying ghoul, who spilled the ball in gutter runner Cotton McKnights direction, and a decent throw later sent the other skaven gutter runner; The Rat, scampering away for 1-0. The Rat was to have a field day.
Most of the first half would be over before more end-zone action appeared, and once again it was The Rat, profiting after storm vermin Tank had knocked out a zombie and the ball fell loose again. With the score at 2-0 there was time for linerat Justin to suffer a fractured skull (courtesy of a werewolf), and Tank to intercept a hopeful Undead attempt at a long pass in the skaven half.
The second half started in a similar way to the first; with a gutter runner scoring in turn 2. This time Average Joes received, and, after thrower Murdoch made a bit of a hash first time round at handing the ball over, a linerat flattened a threatening werewolf (they sure move fast!) and opened space for a superb touchdown - Murdoch handing it off to The Rat, who ran a third of the length of the pitch before finding Cotton McKnight with a precise pass. Another third of the pitch later and it was 3-0. At this point it all kicked off over “who had said what to our Sharon” in the Undead fanzone, and before the referee could remember the latin translation of “oooh, that’s not good” a riot was in progress. Sadly neither team suffered any injuries, and when order was restored a good while later the nearest zombie to linerat Dodge remedied that fact with a serious injury in turn 5. This didn’t stop the ratty scoring machine however, with storm vermin La Fleur throwing the block that dispossessed the ghoul with the ball, and Cotton made a long pass to set The Rat away for his hat-trick and Average Joes fourth.
There was just time at the end for a serious injury to Cotton’s tail (shouldn’t keep him out of the next match however), caused by a werewolf finally breach some shaky skaven defending to make it 4-1 the final score. Linerat Duck managed to claim the fans Most Valuable Player award for not getting squashed by the flesh gollumn, while the rat ogre managed to do virtually nothing all match apart from shove at the golumn while it shoved back and neither went far.
Post Game Analysis
This victory leaves Average Joes in the top segment of the league at the end of the group stage, and unbeaten on a Bloodbowl pitch this season. The last gasp SP points gained by the Ungrateful Dead also saw them hold onto their position in the top half despite their heavy defeat, with the only other skaven team in the competition the losers, dropping to the second tier. Finally many thanks to Coach Dave Mc for his really positive attitude, effort and sportsmanship, even when the gutter runners were making the scoreline look particularly bad! Hopes are high that the final table for Match Day 4 will be released this weekend.