London Nexus take 2nd at the 2011 Millennium London Campaign Cup
This was the third event in the Millennium series and our home event, so we were really keen to put on a good performance. Instead of training on the field for an hour at the site on Thursday, we invited TonTons to our training facility at Bricketwood and spent all of Wednesday practicing against them (well, just the afternoon really, as they were held up in traffic and insisted on sampling the Chicken Salads when they got there).
It was a good days training with points going back and forth and both teams learning more about the field. If I’m honest they probably won 60% of the points, but I’m not so I’m going to pretend we smashed every point with 5 alive. This freed us up to spend the Thursday checking out the venue and scouting the teams we would be playing in the prelims. The venue itself has been used for the last couple of years and though it lacks the prestige of Crystal palace stadium, but there is plenty of space and a good grass playing surface with the added advantage of pikey robbing scum being replaced with Essex girls in short skirts.
Our first prelim game was against Art Chaos Moscow, which included a number of Russian Legion players. We started this match well going 3-0 up but the Russians used their time out to re evaluate game plans and started pulling points back. We did manage to score another point after a brief one on one and a penalty but the Russians soon tied the match up at 4-4. We had to start the match point with 4 players due to a harsh 1 for 1 and Art Chaos took advantage slowly working us out of our bunkers by ganging up on players and won the game 5-4. This was our first encounter with the top seeded team and we weren’t too disheartened with the loss, they have only lost one game so far this year and that was in the Paris finals against Dynasty, so this was probably their hardest prelim match to date.
Saturday started with us playing Dagnir Dae, another team which we haven’t played this season and didn’t know much about. We managed to catch a few of their practice points on Thursday so we had an idea how they played but still weren’t too sure. This match started much like the first with us building a steady lead but Dagnir Dae weren’t able to counter and we ended the match with a 5-1 win.
To pass the time between matches we decided to arrange a poster signing. At first I was worried the only people wanting a poster would be Neil’s Mum and Dad but there was actually quite a large queue. I think we went through about 150 posters in the time we were there and apart from George insisting on drawing his signature over my face and Jason adding his phone number to every girls poster it went quite well, though I did manage to spell my name wrong a couple of times.
I digress… back to the paintball.
Beating Instinct in our final prelim game would put us through to the Quarter Finals. Both teams were on one win so it was all down to this match. We seem to draw this team every event but have won our last two matches so were quietly confident that we could beat them. Again we started the match strong winning the first few points but then a number of large penalties cost us and Instinct started clawing it back. We did manage to win the match 5-3 but the general consensus was that it should have been over quicker and we had almost thrown it away. This was a high adrenalin game and some of the Instinct guys were not overly happy with the result, but the majority of the team took it well and wished us luck in our quarter finals match.
From here you would assume we headed straight back to our massive hotel for a cider and a massage before jumping into bed and getting an early night. Unfortunately this was not the case as I had somewhat stupidly agreed to coach team GB in the intercontinental cup as Jason, Clint and Neil had all been selected. I forget how the team did (they won the event but I’m pretending not to remember) but the event itself was actually really good. My personal highlight was watching a rather “broad” man charge up the center of the field directly into Neil’s gun and then watch Neil gracefully step out of the way like some kind of matador when the guy tried to trade out with him.
We headed back to the hotel around 9 and grabbed a quick meal. Clint who hadn’t eaten in the last few days opted for the athletes choice – a chocolate fudge Sunday twice the size of his head and we quickly ate whilst watching a 70 year old heavily drunk man creep round the bar accosting young women….Only in Essex.
We had made Sunday and now had to play Breakout Spa. We have also played this team twice before but on both occasions they have taken the win, be it a narrow one in Germany. Regardless I think confidence was high, I had been chatting to a few of Breakouts American guests from Xfactor and they had said we were looking strong and with the crowd behind us they were not looking forward to facing us. Points went back and forth in this match but their concerns were confirmed and we ended the match with a 5-3 win.
We were now at the play offs stage and had to face Dynasty who had already won the Paris event and are strong contenders in all the leagues they play. The grandstands were filling up now with players eager to see who would make finals and who would be left playing for third and fourth. The match started well with a fairly long point which we won and from there we managed to keep the pressure on and win the match 5-0. To my knowledge this is the first 5-0 defeat Dynasty have had but they were gracious with it. There was no insinuation of bad luck on their part or foul play on ours just that we wanted it more and they had no counter.
We were now through to the final playing facing Art Chaos again for first and second. The team was on a high after beating Dynasty and everyone was ready to get some pay back for our earlier defeat. Unfortunately this was not forthcoming and we fell behind from the start. We managed to get one point but the Russians seemed to have scouted us and knew how we were playing the field. They varied their game plan dropping short on the pit side (where Clint had been getting consistent kills all weekend) and bullied Jason in the corner. After going a body up they put pressure on our remaining players and worked their way up the field. The game and our weekend finished there with a 5-1 defeat making Art chaos the Campaign Cup champions and the only team to beat us this weekend.
Still 2nd place is certainly nothing to turn your nose up at and with this good result we now sit joint third overall in the Millennium series and are currently looking at qualifying for the Intercontinental Cup (im not sure what this is but its highlighted in Green on the Millennium Series website, so it must be good!).
As always thanks to our sponsors, DYE Precision for the awesome NT markers, Rotor loaders and everything that allows us to play. Celtic paintballs for this weekend’s best paint available and Bricketwood for the training facilities.
A huge thank you goes to the people behind the scenes who allow us to focus the game and not worry about anything else – Bob, Simon, Olly the team masseuse, Big Dave, Leigh, Tommy, Ellcie, Drew, Miguel, Des, Troy, Finn, all of London Relentless and all of you who were in the stands cheering for us – Thanks to all of you, you all helped us along the way.
Next stop Paris. Viva la Nexus!
Photos provided by Erik Chateau