Bout five delivered the long anticipated rematch of last season’s grand final with the Wild Hearses facing off against the 2010 champions, the Road Train Rollers. This was always going to be a cracker of a game, but with victory securing the chance to duke it out with the Salty Dolls for the glory of 2011 champions, this was never going to be anything less than a hard-fought battle of “ovaries-to-the-wall” derby.
The Roadies came out of the box strong and tore away to an early lead in the first half, taking the first two jams with an unanswered 8 points; however it didn’t take the Hearses long to fire up and get into the game. A triple grand slam to Fury of Fenrir rocketed the Hearses to the lead and from there they didn’t look back. Both teams displayed strong pack work, skilfully holding opposing jammers behind impenetrable walls or speeding up and slowing down the pack to maximise each situation to their advantage. The number of zero point jams was a testament the effectiveness of each team in the pack and how hard the jammers had to work for every single point. Once in their grasp the Hearses never relinquished the lead, however the Roadies tenaciously chipped away at it. When the final whistle for the first half was blown a mere ten points separated these two fiercely competitive teams, 44 WH – 34 RTR.
Both teams bounded into the second half with steely-eyed determination and bone-crunching blocks, but it was the Hearses who initially made their mark and furthered their lead. However, consistent, ferocious hard work from the Roadies eventually paid off, seeing them level the score at 66 points apiece with less than four minutes left on the clock. Not long after, a trip to the penalty box by the Hearses’ jammer, Pixie Pincher gave the Roadies the opportunity they had been waiting for. Roadie jammer Killakaze capitalised on it, scoring 5 points, taking her team to their first lead since the very start of the bout. The Roadies continued to push out their lead but with the scores at 73 – 66 going into the final jam, the Hearses were still in with a fighting chance. Barrelhouse Bessy and Whimsicle Mimsicle lined up in this last do-or-die jam. Despite the valiant efforts of the Hearses, the Roadies’ front wall proved too strong, holding back an exhausted Bessy and allowing Mims to score a further 4 points and secure victory for the Roadies. Final bout score 77 RTR – 68 WH. [Slinky Malinky]