who would take their place in the Final from the
second Semi-Final? The two teams set to do battle
were FC Mahou against FC Miracle.
we say battle, we probably do mean a battle as
this was a fiercely contested game between two
teams who knew how to win on our circuit. FC Mahou
already possessed the 2011 Prague Masters, 2013
Algarve Open and 2017 Mallorca Veterans Tournament.
A fourth title would put them joint top of the
all-time winners list (with Olympic Phil Babb
and CIS Committee).
Miracle had the 2012 Valencia Fives trophy in
their possession and were very close to glory
at the 2017 Lisbon Veterans Tournament when they
were defeated by Talhos Mariete in the Cup Final.
Miracle admitted to us at the post-tournament
social that they were playing for penalties. The
tactic proved successful as held FC Mahou to a
0-0 draw. It meant both Semi-Finals would need
penalties to split the teams.
Mahou would take the first penalty with 8-goal
Mike Brandon stepping up – and scoring. Zoltan
Toth immediately equalized for FC Miracle. Next
up was 4-goal Steve Sachro but he saw his penalty
saved and opened the door for FC Miracle. Janos
Gal took full advantage to put FC Miracle 2-1
up. Mark Watkins had to score to keep FC Mahou
in it – he did, 2-2. The pressure was now on Janos
Molnar – could he score and put the Hungarians
in the Cup Final. He could. FC Mahou's dreams
of retaining the title were over.
special mention to Mark Watkins, captain of FC
Mahou. He announced his retirement from playing
after the tournament and it was fitting his last
touch was a successful penalty. We would like
to thank Mark for all his efforts over the year's
(this was FC Mahou's 10th anniversary) in organizing
his team. We hope to see him on tour next year
enjoying the freedom of a spectating/coaching