We’re just about recovered from the North American Qualifiers here at MRDA HQ, but there’s little time to relax just yet as we hurtle toward the European leg of the competition.
Hosted by Manchester Roller Derby, the European Qualifiers will take place between 18th and 19th August at the centrally located North Bridge Leisure Centre, Halifax and will determine who places in October’s championship playoff finals in Portland, OR.
The teams competing are, in no particular order, Manneken Beasts, Barrow Infernos, Tyne and Fear, Nottingham Roller Derby and Lincolnshire Rolling Thunder; we’ve taken the opportunity to catch up with each of them and pose those all important questions that you’ve all been dying to ask.
Today we have a natter with LRT’s number 7, blocker and pivot Tom A Hawke and blocker 199, Dapper Fox.
What does it mean to be a part of MEQ?
TH: It’s a huge honour…It’s great for European Roller derby in general and just a shame more teams couldn’t be involved!
DF: It’s massive to me; to be able to go play four top level games over one weekend is always special. To be a part of a team that narrowly missed out last year we are looking for redemption.
What will you be working on during the tournament?
TH: The team will be looking to qualify as number one and I will be doing all I can mentally and physically to help this be achieved!
DF: Me personally, I am always looking to do the best for my team and give 110%.
As a team we will be putting into practice what we have be training hard all season for.
Who are you personally looking forward to facing on track?
TH: Jonathan R, it will be great to see how he plays in his long awaited come back!
DF: I am looking forward to playing Tyne and Fear; since the start of men’s UK roller derby they have been a top team and I want to play the best teams around.
Who is the one to watch on your team?
TH: Fenno, phenomenal jammer and seriously underrated!
DF: The starting fifteen! 🙂 It’s always good to watch the jammers though and Fenno has been killing it in training this year.
What has been your MRDA highlight of 2018?
TH: Not sure if this counts but the Men’s World Cup in Barcelona.
DF: When we qualify in 1st place to go to champs 😉
Bread: Settle an argument; is it roll, cob, bap…?
TH: Bap obvs.
DF: I am from Leeds so cake, bread CAKE!
Finally, the question everyone’s asking, could you explain to our readers why Roller Polar Bear hasn’t made your roster for this tournament?
TH: A unique endangered animal should be protected at all cost.
DF: His jokes are not funny anymore and he has stopped doing parkour.