IN TOUCH: Event organiser Toni Notley (second from right) with the Brothers' Meerkats women's Super 8 team.
IN TOUCH: Event organiser Toni Notley (second from right) with the Brothers' Meerkats women's Super 8 team.

Soaked but super start to Ipswich 8s

IN THE 1989 film, Field of Dreams, Kevin Costner's character was inspired by the quote 'build it and he will come.'

In a similar vein, Ipswich Super 8s organiser, Toni Notley, dreamt of creating an event that would draw the region's premier touch football players to Ipswich.

For the second year in a row, the Ipswich Touch Association-backed tournament has fielded eight teams in both the men's and women's divisions.

With a number of teams returning for this year's competition, there will be almost 200 touch football players converging on Ipswich over the next four weeks.

"Ipswich Super 8 sponsors have provided playing strips for every team, (plus) quality opposition and a number of Australia's top referee officiating is reason enough for players to return,” Ipswich Touch Association president Dale O'Connell said.

"Not to mention the value gained by getting 10 games under their belts before NTLs in March.”

While the ITA and Super 8 committees were prepared for a onslaught of players and spectators on Friday night, Mother Nature tried her best to wash away the enthusiasm.

In the 24 hours leading up to 9am on Saturday, nearly 17mm of rain fell over the Ipswich region with much of that falling between 5 and 10pm on Friday.

With the first round scheduled to kick off on Friday night, the already heavy Jim Finimore fields became even more water-logged. The weather didn't stifle creativity however, and the all-out determination in defensive efforts.

"The heavy track ruled out the long-pass game, but certainly suited the short-ball plays,” Ipswich referee, Brad Smith added.

"This adds that element of excitement when players dive for the try-line.”

In the ladies' draw, the iThink Property Swans remain the only undefeated team while the Physioactive Force, Brothers' Meerkats, Heritage City Photos Cobras 1, Warriors and Cobras 2 all experienced mixed fortunes in week one by winning one of their two opening rounds.

After week one, the points table race for the finals is already looking congested with the Swans sitting atop and in a good position to take the spoils for the second consecutive year.

This is not so much the case in the men's draw with three teams, GJ Walsh and Co Saints, Anthony Bauer Plumbing Swans and Mallett's Choice Flooring Cobras, each opening with successive victories.

The Saints will be determined to win back-to -back titles, but will have to overcome both the Swans and Cobras who have shown some good early tournament form. Thankfully for the tournament's organisers, the forecast for the second week of the series is for clear skies.

These conditions will be more conducive for slick ball movement and players being more fleet-footed which will only add to the spectacle.

Week two commences this Friday from 6:30pm at Jim Finimore Oval, One Mile.

Ipswich Super 8s results from Friday, January 27:

Round 1 -

Mens: GJ Walsh & Co Saints 12 def McNamamara & Assoc Titans 3; Anthony Bauer Plumbing Swans 7 def Warriors 1; Ipswich Touch Hurricanes 8 def David Hill Natives; Mallet's Choice Flooring Cobras 8 def Ikonic O'Doyle 1.

Womens: Heritage City Photos Cobras 3 def Physioactive Force 1; Brothers' Meerkats 6 def Chris Paterson Bobcat IGGS 1; iThink Property Swans 9 def Warriors 0; Cobras 9 def Ipswich Touch Falcons 2.

Round 2 -

Womens: iThink Property Swans 7 def Brothers' Meerkats 3; Physioactive Force 5 def Chris Paterson Bobcat IGGS 2; Hertiage City Photos Cpobras 1 drew Cobras 1; Warriors 5 def Ipswich Touch Falcons 3.

Mens: Mallet's Choice Flooring Cobras 7 def McNamara & Assoc Titans 2; Anthony Bauer Plumbing Swans 6 David Hill Natives 0; GJ Walsh & Co Saints 6 def Ipswich Topuch Hurricanes 3; Ikonic ODoyle 9 def Warriors 4.