On the 23rd of September, we arrived at Valencia airport. We were on our way to Gandía (65 km south of Valencia, Spain) to dispute the final stage of the EXPL (Spanish x-ball paintball league). We got to spend some good times, hanging out with the team, chilling at the beach on Friday, and on Saturday some of the players got a chance to play some relaxed 3 on 3 paintball, which we won :-)
Our goal for the weekend, was obviously to secure the first place in the tournament and ensuring the first position in the overall ranking. Before Sunday, we were on leading, followed by Blue falcon with only one point difference. This made it clear for us, that there was no room for error. Even though we were conscious about the situation, what we had to do and what we couldn’t let happen, Sunday did not go well for us.
We started off the day playing Arca Gandía at 10:15 (which was comfortably awesome), and this was our first and only loss in the prelims, with a score of 3-4. This made it clear for us that the quality of the Spanish paintball is getting better by the year and that we had to up our game in order to achieve our goal. Nothing was lost yet.
After the previous match, we decided that we had to dig deep if we were to make it to the finals. So for the last two prelim games (Ecosport Granada and Atlantic Games BCM), we played solid paintball, we were playing as a unit. We obtained a 5-1 and a 4-0 victory.
At this point, we were confident in our game and in the fact that the first position was in reach and thus securing the championship. However, we were just a little bit to confident and underestimated the evolution of the Spanish paintball. We slowed down our game, and this cost us the match against Arca Gandia on the semifinals, ending our run for champion spot.
The fact that Blue Falcon advanced to the finals, and we didn’t, obtained them the first position in the overall ranking. We got a 4th place in this stage and 2nd in the overall ranking :-(
Even thought, we didn’t accomplish any of our goals in the field, we felt like we had a great weekend as teammates. However, this is not our purpose as Beira-mar paintball team, we don’t play paintball for weekends abroad or for the 3rd and 4th position, we play to win. Although this year was not positive for us (neither in the Spanish or Portuguese leagues), we did learn that we need to fight harder if we are aiming for that number one spot.