Report: Australian Open

A gripping final was decided in the most cruel of fashions, when Melbourne TFC’s Peter Thomas missed with his spare-keeper, allowing teammate Carl Young to manoeuvre and score the winner in a 4-3 decision.

Carl had opened the scoring, before Peter equalised, then Carl raced to a 3-1 lead. With the match seemingly lost midway through the second half, Peter staged a remarkable comeback, only to lose after an errant flick in extra time.

A new venue for Melbourne, Zagame’s — a restaurant and function centre — and a first sponsor  for the ATFA in Masita sports wear, were highlights of the weekend with 14 players from five Australian clubs, including the newly created Western Flickers TFC based in the west of Melbourne.

The opening rounds saw few surprises, though Eliot Kennedy (Nthn Falcons) had a tough battle against Giuseppe Tardiotta (Brisbane), leading 2-0 before Giuseppe scored twice in 40 seconds to level it at the break. Eliot steeled himself and won 4-2, while Carl had a real battle to beat Benny Ng (Western Flickers) 2-1, and Benji Batten (Melbourne TFC) survived some early scares to beat Steve Dettre (Nthn Falcons) 1-0.

In the quarterfinals, the standout was the cross-town derby match between Benny of the Flickers and Benji of Melbourne TFC. After extra time and no goals, it went to shots, with Benny claiming a tight 2-1 result.

Many thanks goes to Flickers’ Kevin Grant for transport, to Luke Radziminski, Adrian Connolly and Beth Eveleigh for setting up, and to Chris Simpson of Zagame’s and Masita’s Tim McKenzie and George Campbell for their support.

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Australia’s leading table footballers will lock horns this Saturday as the Australian Table Football Association (ATFA) stage their Australian Open for 2016.

Table football is recognised as the most realistic simulation of football, and is a competitive game based on the table top game of Subbuteo.

FIFA has numerous displays of Subbuteo in its museum in Zurich.

The Federation of International Sports Table Football FISTF was founded in 1992 and is the governing body of sports table football around the world. Among its many functions it provides oversight for international competitions, produces the world rankings, organises the official world cup, and determines the playing rules for the game.

Member nations of FISTF (like ATFA) host high quality international tournaments catering for the best Subbuteo players in the world.

Zagame’s at Caulfield is the venue for the tournament which features Australia’s top-ranked players.

ATFA president Steve Dettre, a table footballer with 40 years’ experience is excited at the growth of the sport both in Australia, and worldwide.  “Kids, adults, families and soccer fans are looking for more social and skilful ways to simulate the game, and are turning away from TV screens and monitors, and joining our ranks” he said.  “Coaches are using Subbuteo sets to discuss tactics with players, and the elite playing ranks are growing as well.  The sport is making a massive comeback in Australia, and around the world” he added.

Image result for subbuteo flick

Part of that growth has spawned a new club in Melbourne – Western Flickers, who are keen to establish a cross-town rivalry with Australia’s premier club Melbourne TFC.  Benny Ng, a Singaporean international, heads up the Flickers and is excited about the Open being in Melbourne.

“I can’t wait to see the first official games between Flickers’ members and Melbourne members” said Ng.  Benji Batten the Melbourne president is a good mate, and we were all under the one banner at one stage.  We thank him for his service to the sport in Melbourne, but all friendship is put aside once the whistle goes” added Ng.

The Australian Open runs all day Saturday with semis-finals and finals starting at 4:30PM.

Enquiries: Chris Tanner (Zenith Sports and Event Management) – 0407008489

Enquiries: Steve Dettre (Australian Table Football Association) – 0408420234



FISTF World Cup in Belgium



Austria’s Wolfgang Leitner broke a seven-year Latin domination of the table football world when he won the Open category of the 2016 FISTF World Cup in the Belgian city of Frameries over the weekend.

Almost 500 competitors – men, women, veterans and youth categories — competed to find out who is the best in table football, historically known as “Subbuteo”.

The Federation of International Sports Table Football (FISTF) was founded in 1992 and is the governing body of sports table football. Among its many functions it provides oversight for international competitions, produces the world rankings, organises the official world cup, and determines the playing rules for the game. FISTF President Alan Collins was on hand to present trophies, chair the organisation’s AGM, and liaise with official guests from local government, manufacturers and national table football federations. These included the newly formed Russian federation who were participating in their first World Cup.

“It’s great to have the Russians, Australians, Japanese and Americans here,” said Collins. “The game is going through a global regrowth and it’s great to see more and more countries getting on board.”

Collins also thanked Olivier Pere and the local organising committee. “Putting on events of this size for our sport is a mammoth task. Olivier and his team have done a smashing job.”

In the Open final, Leitner beat Italy’s Luca Colangelo 2-1 in an exciting match, to break the stranglehold of Italy and Spain on the title, who had dominated the category since Dutchman Eric Verhagen’s win in 2008.

Nevertheless, the tournament was a gold mine for Italian table football, with the Azzuri picking up four out of six individual titles, including a clean sweep of the U19, U15 and U12 categories. Italy also won four of the six teams’ events with Belgium picking up the other two.


Men’s Open

Round of 16
Juan Manuel Noguera (ESP) 2 d. Maikel de Haas (NED) 1
Sebastien Scheen (BEL) 3 d. Alexander Haas (AUT) 2 (sudden death)
Wolfgang Leitner (AUT) 4 d. Luca Zambello (ITA) 1
Daniele Bertelli (ITA) 2 d. Remy Huynh (BEL) 1
Luca Colangelo (ITA) 4 d. Axel Donval (FRA) 2
Christophe Dheur (BEL) 3 d. Sami Targui (BEL) 1
Massimo Bolognino (ITA) 2 d. Spyros Hatzaras (GRE) 1
Derek Conti (MLT) 2 d. Wolfgang Haas (AUT) 1

Juan Manuel Noguera (ESP) 4 d. Sebastien Scheen (BEL) 1
Wolfgang Leitner (AUT) 4 d. Daniele Bertelli (ITA) 3
Luca Colangelo (ITA) 5 d. Christophe Dheur (BEL) 1
Derek Conti (MLT) 2 d. Massimo Bolognino (ITA) 1

Wolfgang Leitner (AUT) 4 d. Juan Manuel Noguera (ESP) 3
Luca Colangelo (ITA) 3 d. Derek Conti (MLT) 2

Wolfgang Leitner (AUT) 2 d. Luca Colangelo (ITA) 1

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Veterans Final
Gianfranco Calonico (ITA) 6 d. Massimo Cremona (MLT) 2

Ladies Final
Carolina Villarigues (POR) 3 d. Victoria Büsing (GER) 0

U19 Final
Matteo Ciccarelli (ITA) 3 d. Nicola Borgo (ITA) 0

U15 Final
Leonardo Giudice (ITA) 3 d. Claudio La Torre (ITA) 2

U12 Final
Giorgio Giudice (ITA) 3 d. Kristian Silagiev (ESP) 2

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –


Men’s Open Teams Final
Italy 4 d. Spain 0

Women’s Teams Final
Belgium 2 d. Italy 2 (goal difference)

Veteran’s Teams Final
Italy 3 d. Belgium 1

U19 Teams Final
Belgium 3 d. Germany 1

U15 Teams Final
Italy 3 d. Austria 1

U12 Teams Final
Italy 2 d. Belgium 0