Friday 01 August brought with it the most highly anticipated football tournament of the year…no not the World Cup, but the annual Informals 5-a-side tournament at the Powerleague in Shoreditch. With a record number of 14 teams, including teams from private IP firms, in-house IP divisions, general practice law firms and an IP software and management firm, this year’s competition was geared up to be one of the most fiercely contested yet.
The group stages brought the twists and turns one would usually expect to see from a high pressure tournament. A shock exit from last year’s champions EIP in the group stages, despite some good play, left the field wide open whilst the renowned Carpmaels & Ransford (who only entered one team this year) seemed to take a few matches to settle into their usual form. At the end of the group stages Marks & Clerk, the Brighton office of Dehns and, newcomers to the Informals tournament, Mintz Levin finished top of their respective groups with Dehns and Mintz Levin looking to dominate the knock out stages having won all of their group games. But obviously, in an Informals 5-a-side, anything can happen.
Eight teams made it through to the knock out stages with RGC Jenkins, Marks & Clerk, Carpmaels and Mintz Levin withholding the pressure and beating their opponents to make it through to the semi-finals to battle it out for a place in the final.
After some high scoring games in the semis and some great play by all four sides the final came down to Mintz Levin against Marks & Clerk. Mintz Levin went in looking like the favourites, having secured an unbeaten run throughout the tournament, but Marks & Clerk gave them a good run for their money. Both sides had some great chances throughout the game and both displayed some especially good goalkeeping talent. However, after a close start, Mintz Levin started banging home the goals (six in total!) to secure victory and carry home the trophy and the title of Informals 5-a-side Champions 2014. In the third place play off Carpmaels beat RGC Jenkins to gain the title of third place.
Thanks to all teams who came down and took part and congratulations to the team from Mintz Levin. Will Mintz Levin be able to defend their title next year? Watch this space.
Ruth Telfer, Sports Co-Ordinator