Jean's Diary: TDEU live from Novi Sad - Hattrick Duchesses vs She-Wolves

TDEU's editor, Jean-Francois, headed over to Novi Sad, Serbia, for the women's flag football game between Hattrick Duchesses (Vojvotkinje) and She-Wolves Belgrade (Vucice). 
It all started at 6:30am..
*snoozes alarm*
*snoozes alarm*
.. it all started at 6:48am this Sunday.

Following an almost sleepless night, I had to meet with the Vučic.. Black Ninjas team of Belgrade at the trainstation. At the moment of jumping in the train, a few members were still missing, but a good run from Suzana Lucic brought us all to a 2nd & goal, the goal being Novi Sad's Hattrick stadium.

After a false start initiated by Mihailo (coach of the Vučice), and a penalty of 100 yards for going the wrong direction, we got back on the right track to the stadium, till they saw a place to eat halfway..

3rd and long in Duchesses territory.

Refilled with palacinke, and coffee, we gathered our strength for the final attempt, and... called a taxi.

With a temperature outside closing on minus 10, and enough snow to build a snowman of Vince Wilfork, everybody is glad to get inside Hattrick café, the last step before The Bubble.

After a warm-up session mixing both teams, the referees stepped on the field, and the game was to start.
I was surprised to see it was played only on a 20-yard length, but as a photographer this is totally going in the Pros column!

Belgrade's team was sporting only black clothes, no jerseys, while the Duchesses had some pretty fancy blue and pink jerseys.
Their players on the other end age from 9 to 40.
Both teams had some blondes playing.

Even though it is a non-contact version of American football, there were a few hits caused by momentum, but the girls were taking them better than most soccer players would.

The action is fast, includes a lot of trick plays (at least 3 players threw a pass for the Black Ninjas), and the touchdowns kept piling till the last blow.

All in all it was a tight game, but the last minutes were fatal to the guest team because of picks thrown to a very aware CB.

Another noticeable difference with daddy American football, is the absence of goal posts, and kicks/punts making it even less "footy" (any resemblance to the name of a World Cup mascot is fortuitous).

On a final score of 53:38, it was hard to be bored, despite the lack of sleep. The winners celebrated with a lot of hugging their president, hanging off her neck and chest-bumping her (she should be glad there is no Pamela Anderson or Reggie-nette White on her side).

The day ended around a table covered with glasses full of warm wine.
I love this game.

Author and photographer:
Jean-Francois Nicollet