QUAFL Cup Recap

The odds were stacked against them, but the Perth Phoenixes took the 2013 QUAFL Cup and Oceania Regional Championship over the Macqaurie University Marauders.

The odds were stacked against them, but the Perth Phoenixes took out the 2013 QUAFL Cup and Oceania Regional Championship with a 110*-70 win over the Macqaurie University Marauders.

In the third instalment of the QUAFL Cup, it was the Perth Phoenixes who defeated the Macquarie University Marauders in the final with a score of 110*-70 to take the QUAFL Cup back to Western Australia. The tournament saw a string of upsets as Pool A favourites and hosts University of Western Sydney Thestrals (UWS) and Pool B favourites University of New South Wales Snapes on a Plane (UNSW), both fell in the quarterfinals and short of World Cup VII bids.

Pool A



Average Point Differential Per Game

Macquarie University Marauders



University of Western Sydney Thestrals (UWS)



Melbourne Manticores



Perth Phoenixes



Wollongong Warriors



Australian National Nargles



Day 1:
UWS 130* vs Phoenixes 60
Manticores 160* vs Wollongong 70
Marauders 90 vs Nargles 40*
Phoenixes 90* vs Manticores 30
UWS 140 vs Nargles 30*
Marauders 90 vs Wollongong 80*
Manticores 110 vs Nargles 50*
Wollongong 70* vs Phoenixes 60
Marauders 70* vs UWS 40
Phoenixes 90 vs Nargles 50*

Day 2:
Marauders 90* vs Manticores 60
UWS 90* vs Wollongong 10
Phoenixes 80* vs Marauders 50
Wollongong 100* vs Nargles 50
Manticores 80* vs UWS 70

Of the two pools, it was Pool A that was seen as the harder of the two, with all teams of the belief they could finish in the top four and make it to the finals. UWS showed early on why it was the favourite to win this pool, posting comfortable wins over the Phoenixes and Nargles, before falling to a Marauders squad that went undefeated on day one. The Phoenixes caused the first upset of the pool as strong bludger control and chaser defence kept the Manticores to its lowest score of pool play. The final four looked to be set until Wollongong won its first match of the morning against the Phoenixes, which blew the finals race wide open again. The Nargles struggled with a small squad against the bigger bodied chaser sides but caught every snitch on day one in a defiant display of seeking prowess by Matt Armstrong and Nathan Askey-Doran.

Day two saw all teams put everything on the field as five of the six teams could still make finals. The Marauders secured top spot of the pool with a tough fought win over the Manticores, while UWS put another big dent into Wollongong’s point differential. The Phoenixes secured the final spot in the top four by ending the Marauders unbeaten run. Wollongong ended the day on a winning note over the Nargles, while the Manticores gave its team plenty of confidence going into the finals with a win over UWS.

Pool B



Average Point Differential Per Game

University of New South Wales Snapes on a Plane (UNSW)



Newcastle Fireballs



University of Sydney Unspeakables



Monash University Muggles



University of Technology Sydney Opaleyes (UTS)



James Cook University Galleons (JCU)



Day One:
Newcastle 270* vs UTS 30
UNSW 160* vs JCU 0
Monash 80* vs Unspeakables 30
UNSW 90* vs Newcastle 40
Monash 130 vs UTS 90*
Unspeakables 180 vs JCU 40 (forfeiture)
UNSW 190* vs Monash 40
Newcastle 120 vs JCU 0 (forfeiture)
Unspeakables 130 vs UTS 40*

Day Two:
Newcastle 70* vs Monash 30
UNSW 100* vs Unspeakables 10
UTS 120 vs JCU 0 (forfeiture)
Unspeakables 100* vs Newcastle 90
Monash 120 vs JCU 0 (forfeiture)
UNSW 120* vs UTS 10

The morning started with two clinical displays from the top two ranked teams of the pool. Newcastle’s Dameon Osborne single handedly dismantled UTS, while two-time reigning champion UNSW had a clean sheet win over JCU to start its morning. In the game of the unknown quantities, Monash overcame the Unspeakables in a close match to show the competition that it was here to win it. Newcastle kept UNSW within snitch range, but the class of seeker Emmanuel Berkowicz secured the victory for UNSW. An unfortunate seeker injury saw a small JCU squad have to forfeit its remaining games of pool play and with the rest of the games of day one all being blowouts, the final four was already cemented going into day two.

An upset win by the Unspeakables over Newcastle on day two saw the formation of a three-way tie. Newcastle remained in second due to superior point differential, but the Unspeakables jumped up into third at the expense of Monash. UNSW cruised through to the finals undefeated and showed no signs of why it could not make it three QUAFL victories in a row. UTS won its first match of the tournament with a forfeiture win over JCU and gained invaluable experience over the weekend.

With the eight teams finalised and four World Cup VII bids up for grabs it was the Manticores versus Newcastle and Monash versus Marauders first up on pitch with the tantalising possibility of an all Melbourne showdown in the semi-finals on the cards. Neither the Manticores or Newcastle showed the explosive scoring abilities they had in pool play, instead the match was a low-scoring, defensive tussle. Newcastle could not find a way through the Manticores bludger defense and the Manticores could not get past the defence of Max Convey, Ryan Hanwright and Roy Velting, as only three goals were scored between both teams before Dameon Osborne’s snitch catch was eventually ruled good and saw Newcastle prevail 50*-10.

On the other pitch, Daniel Mahoney scored four goals to help the Marauders to comfortably get out of snitch range, before Daniel Commander’s snitch catch ended Monash’s first QUAFL experience and secured the Marauders a World Cup VII bid 110*-30. Both Melbourne teams had been valiant all tournament and will come back stronger and hungrier next year for QUAFL glory.

The other two quarterfinals featured the two favourites to win the tournament and the two smallest squads left in the competition, with UWS versus Unspeakables and UNSW versus Perth Phoenixes. Both games were the opposite of the blowouts predicted. UWS lost two of its best beaters due to commitments/injury and the Unspeakables capitalised with strong beater possession the entire match. UWS managed to stay within snitch range even with the class of Cameron Brown scoring seven goals for the Unspeakables, but Liam O'Callaghan evaded the early decoy snitches and caught the snitch who was preoccupied with UWS’s seeker, 140*-90.

In the other quaterfinal, the Phoenixes secured a 20-point lead before UNSW changed up its tactics and personnel to mount a comeback to get the scores back to equal. The snitch was then sighted which led Phoenixes beater Shane Young to run 100m off-field to beat UNSW’s seeker, which gave Phoenixes seeker Michael Palmisano the time he needed to catch the snitch and send the Phoenixes through to the semi-finals and end the two-time reigning champions unbeaten run 80*-50.


With four teams remaining, the Macquarie Marauders, Newcastle Fireballs, the University of Sydney Unspeakables and the Perth Phoenixes all qualify for World Cup VII. None of the teams were prepared to stop there though, with everyone wanting to be able to hold up the QUAFL Cup at the end of the day. So with a short drinks break it was back into the games with the Marauders versus Fireballs and Unspeakables versus Phoenixes.

The game was always going to be a beater showdown, with both teams having claims to the best beater combinations in the tournament. Newcastle were able to jump out to a quick 20-0 lead, but the Marauders staunch defence and the patient offence of Dan Phipps rattled through the next three goals to take the lead. With both teams sharing beater control and no chaser line-up dominating in the heat, the game had snitch catch written all over it and it was not long until Daniel Commander once again was able to win the game for the Marauders with the snitch catch, 60*-20.

The Unspeakables and Phoenixes both play a very similar style of quidditch, both teams utilise a male beater combo and heavily rely on their keepers ability to score, so this was going to be a close hard fought game. The Phoenixes got off to a fast start with the first three goals on the board. From then on, both sides traded goals until the snitch was sighted on field. The Phoenixes opted to have both beaters focus on snitch play which allowed Cameron Brown to mount a comeback for the Unspeakables, getting the scores to an even 60-60. Before another Phoenixes goal and snitch catch due to an explosive burst of speed from Michael Palmisano ended the game 100*-60.   


And then there were two. The Macquarie Marauders and the Perth Phoenixes, battled it out for the title of Oceania Regional champions. Both teams had already played each other in pool play that day with the Phoenixes winning in a close one 80*-50, but the Marauders welcomed in a pair of fresh legs in the form of Harry Mahoney during lunch. After a stirring national anthem by Marauders captain Laura Bailey, the starting seven were lined up. Mahoney was quickest out of the blocks and saw the Marauders get the first goal on the board, but it was all Phoenixes from there, as James Hyder, Michael Palmisano and Benjamin Palladino all put in goals to take the game to 70-20 and out of snitch range. The Marauders wrestled back bludger control and had the advantage as the snitch was sighted 50m off field. With all beaters preoccupied with the seekers, Marauders keeper Dan Phipps was able to single handily tie the scores up at 70-70 with several devastating runs through the Phoenixes beater less defence. Hyder was able to respond with his fifth goal of the match before a beater tussle off field gave Palmisano enough time to get past and catch his fourth snitch of the day to end the game 110*-70.