On January 24th Dave Gladman flew south to take part in the Malta International Open. It was an opportunity to escape Scottish January weather for a few days but although Malta was a bit warmer, it was no less wet or windy.
The tournament was hosted by Valletta Lions TFC.
The team event took place on the Saturday and was won by Valletta Subbuteo Club who beat Valletta Lions in the final.
Gladman did not have great expectations in the the tournament as the standard of play is a step up from that in Scotland. Add to that he is still recovering from a broken finger. First up was a match against John Zammit. Gladman was three goals down after only a few minutes. Fortunately an impending slaughter did not materialise and he managed to keep the score to five. A better result was achieved against Joe Mifsud, this time a 3-1 defeat after trailing 2-1 at half-time. In his final match Gladman managed to double his number of goals scored but went down 6-1. Astonishingly, in this game he equalised and had an opportunity to go 2-1 ahead. But then it was backs to the wall.
The Veterans competition was won by Charles Aquilina who defeated Jason Pisani on shots in the final. Derek Conti beat Samuel Bartolo 2-1 to win the Open title.
More pictures from the event:
Many thanks to Valletta Lions and indeed all the Maltese players for their hospitality, friendliness and enjoyable tournament!