The Banditas were honoured to be asked to participate in the 2016 Great Yorkshire Showdown, hosted by the Leeds Roller Dolls. We were looking forward to a fun weekend of roller derby and went into the tournament with no expectations other than to try a few new things.
And we only went and won it!
Our first two games were half and hour bouts with the final lasting the standard length of an hour. Our first match up was against Glasgow Roller Derby's B team was the one that we were most nervous about. Glasgow are one of the highest ranked teams in the UK and their B-team would be a strong opponent. Once we started the game, however, we realised that our calm game style, strong jammers and well-practiced walls were more than a match for them. Despite getting a fair few penalties we played incredibly well and pulled out some very smooth strategy when we needed it. We were shocked at the final score and riding high into our next game.
Hereford were a bit of an unknown. They had not taken part in the 2016 British Champs competition and had spent the year rebuilding as we had done in 2015. They came out strong and chased us hard for the first 10 minutes. Eventually we were able to pull ahead with a much lower penalty count and smarter game. We couldn't believe it when we realised we'd made it all the way to the final!
After a 20 minute rest we were set for a full hour-long bout against the hosts, Leeds Roller Dolls B-team. We rested, re-feuled and re-focused for the task at hand.
Leeds' walls were strong but with clever, calm offence and resilient jammers we were able to break them up and exploit the gaps. Despite coming in off the back of another game our walls held firm and we continued to play cleverly with a low penalty count and many of our jams taking more than one scoring pass. We played consistently from first whistle to last, never letting any signs of fatigue slip into our playing. Our blockers were playing offence for the jammer right up to the end and we even racked up points in the final second of the match.
The whole team erupted in cheers when the final whistle rolled out. We were over the moon! We hadn't expected to win any of the games and not only did we surprise ourselves with the wins we did it commandingly. We played our way, we played calmly and we played as a team with fun as our main goal. Because of this we came away with the wonderful winners rosettes!
We couldn't have done it without our Line Up and Bench Mangers, Ali P and Scooby Zoom, keeping us organised and drilling us on strategy in our training sessions. We couldn't have done it without our amazing refs, NSOs and volunteers supporting us in training and making the event happen. And we couldn't have done it without our fantastic fans cheering us all the way!
What a win for 2016!
Halifax Bruising Banditas
Best Jammer - Sonic Ruth
Best Blocker - Psycho
MVP - Millie Hurtz
Banditas Spirit - Gremlynn
British Champs 2017 - Round 3 - Halifax Bruising Banditas v Furness Firecrackers
April 21, 2017
2017 Preview - Return of the Banditas!
January 21, 2017
Watch this space
In the mean time why not check out our results from previous years