Columns - xhrl  

  SR vs CMF: will the Curse get cracked?  050122  
well on paper how can you not favour cmf? they are one of the greatest foursomes in qw tdm; they are built to win championships. but i thought the same about LA going into the semis; all sr did was prove that they have that amazing will to win when it matters.

look for sr to try to sneak a win out of dm2 or dm3 and to try to take it home on cmt3/4. bear in mind that siv and hlt, two of the best cmf players, just don't like the cmts and would rather not play them at all. that leaves angua, fix and fifi to share the lg in the cmt4 quad room. will that be enough to hold off xerial and his manly men on cmt 4? i doubt sr will lose cmt 4. but cmt 3 is another story.

I expect this series to go five maps and to be decided on cmt 3. I think cmt 3 will be a serious showdown, as cmf is very efficient on it. While LA's loss to sr could be excused as happening because they are something of a tb3-only clan, there is no such charge that can used against cmf. I expect these so-called cursed cmf players to beat off their nqr curse against sr on cmt 3. for on papaer how can you bet against cmf? well i guess the game isn't played out on paper, so there is hope for sr and their fans!

i see this as being one of the all-time great match ups just in anticipation of the match being played and i am not sure why. is it the whole cmf curse thing? is finally seeing a guy like fifi, who has be around for a long time, finally play in a championship match where he may be victorious? yes all those things exist, but i don't think that's all of it for me. is the maps? i can assure you the map pool doesn't make the game for me as it does seem to for so many. i think it has to do with the great respect i have for the players in this game on both sides. i have known some of them for many years and have watched some of them develop their tdm skills for years prior to this and now seeing them head into this championship seems like a great culmination to all that practising and effort. perhaps also i see these two clans as some possessing some of best sportsmanship in qw. well i wish that both clans bring their best teamplay and skills to championship match this coming sunday: strength and honour to those about to battle!

  SR rolls on to the Finals!   050117  
If you read my views prior to the games between sr and la, then you know i was wrong about many things; but not all. The cmts went to SR. I had expected cmt 4 to be a slacker win for sure. Though the final game played out on cmt 3 did not play at all as i expected. However that may be, as LA is not exactly practising the cmts 24/7, I shouldn't have been too terribly surprised at them losing on it. What did surprise me was the outcome of dm3. All season long LA has not lost on it. In any 'serious' practice session in which I have seen LA play dm3, they have not lost on it. So the loss on dm3 seems to me the real reason LA lost this season's semifinals, not the losses on the cmts. The outcome of the e1m2 was closer than expected, but that was simply because LA was nursing a lead to the bitter end. There was a lot of talk -- and some whining talk, too -- after the match about the map pools for next year. Some people found the final cmt 3 to be a rather boring game; if you were a LA fan especially dull ;p I do think the admin squad will move toward a system where divisions simply vote on their map pools prior to league play. There are number of ways of doing this and nothing has been decided for sure, but I do think it is a wise idea in principle.

Gaz was wrong, of course, that the final would be LA vs CMF. He did what so many have done throughout the last few years: underestimate the underdog's will to succeed. SR are the defending champs of course, but this is not the same ueber-team with hib, gamer and goljat as in previous seasons. I like the teamplay of this squad, as it is very selfless and very thoughtful. Circle, xerial, cmac and paradoks seem to have continued to get better and better as a team. We see it on the cmts. But the games sr played on tb3 against LA were closer than I anticipated; the dm2 loss should have melted away any sr hopes of coming back on any other tb3 map but it didn't. Xerial and cmac's play on dm3 really made me think, 'wow, these bastards have a shot, as dm3 was being played.' But to be true, it wasn't just one pivotal guy on dm3, it was more of a team effort that brought the victory. The support play was almost without mistakes. I still think SR will have to take dm2 against cmf to have any chance in the finals.

Now it is time to start thinking about the NQR 7 CHAMPIONSHIP! SR vs CMF. I will write about it after I have had some time to think about it. For now let me acknowledge the great skill of both LA and SR, and wish all strength and honour to those who will battle in the finals!

  SR vs LA; the Cursed Ones of CMF roll along to the FINALS!  050115  
Well I bet cmf took great delight in breaking apart my predictions on their match up with gtg. As for GTG, I do think they put up a solid fight against cmf; but if I were their coach, I just couldn't stand that game they played on e1m2 as team. Congratulations have to go to cmf for forcing them out of their normal support play etc.; and it should be emphasized that to beat grffn et al on e1m2 was definitely NOT an easy way to take out GTG. I thought the dm2 game was a nice win for gtg, but was not a great game by cmf. It was as if they began to rest easy or relax. None of this should be happening in the playoffs, and I believe cmf fans will be encouraging the so-called 'cursed' ones to never let up no matter what the frag differential. As for the Finals: Cmf vs SR or LA. Will gaz_the_red be correct in his cmf vs la prediction? On paper you have to see things that way. We have SR without goljat or gamer; some say hib won't play and that, moreover, even if hib does play, he's not in any dominating shape like seasons passed. What of Paradoks? Circle? Xerial? I like this line up a lot. The missing link on certain maps is unclear to me, though. One thing LA will have to do is shut down Paradoks on dm2 and dominate the Quad. I don't think LA actually has to run the quads with amazing success to win; rather that they just have to corked up para and his family so they don't get to dominate the rl/Quad area. Strange for some longtime SR to hear perhaps, but I think dm2 is now a map that Paradoks has improved on. Stopping him there will be a key for LA. I don't see LA losing on e1m2 to SR; it will be LA's map to lose as the saying goes. SR must win dm2, cmt 4 and cmt3 or dm3 to face cmf. The idea of LA losing on dm3 is repugnant to most LA supporters. And rightly so; as during NQR7, LA is perfect on the map. That said, some have pointed out that they haven't been tested on it. Whatever may be the merits of that idea, I must agree with the LA fans and predict dm3 to go to LegeArtis. So that means if SR is going to win, they must take dm2, cmt 3 and 4 from LA. Of course I am probably wrong, but i wouldn't be surprised to see this series decided on dm2 or cmt 3. Look for that to happen and, if it is played out as I suggest, I think you'll need a coin flip to determine the opponent who will face the Cursed Ones of cmf:) I see LA's biggest edge going in to tomorrow's match is in their recent rampage at the qhLAn; that is, it was an all LA lan. That has to boost their already strong belief in their own abilities. SR fans will be counting on the quiet confidence of SR to overcome any odds. As I wrote above, for SR to win they need to win the lotto dm2 for sure...that will be the touchstone; if they lose dm2 watch SR to lose heart and fade away. LA and rkr will do all they can to make sure of this.

But will the Cursed Ones remain so at the end of things this season? I will discuss this the finals date is made clear. The feeling is high that the curse of cmf will be smashed this season. But are these not just false hopes?

Strength and honour to those about to battle!

  The best QW player ever?  041224  
I have been working on my semi-secret project during my Christmas Break. One of things that has come up, has been trying to find some of the greatest moments and individual efforts in qw tdm or duel history. I had thought of ptr and many other candidates. Now, thanks to Third-eye down in the .au, I have found the answer to all my questions:

Read that coulmn through and try to keep yourself from smiling:) Perhaps even some of you have had similar qw 'disputes'? I recall some hilarious ones from the NA...just thinking about them makes me chuckle:p

It is getting close to see the remaining quarterfinalists go at it. VVV is the team to beat; i doubt they will lose: isn't this a no brainer? Actually it isn't. But I can't help but favour them.

Is anyone going to take out LA? People tell me that even with ParadokS playing his finest tdm, the SR squad is really lacking a fourth solid man. SR fans had better hope hib gets in some qw practice over the next while.

Is there anything to the curse of the dag? Do other players really phear his skills and his sense of the game that much? Some have told me that his reputation just worms its way to your head no matter how confident you are. That has got to be something, an intangible of course, that LA fans are counting on as these playoffs progress.

Now back to work on the other thing...may be it will be ready for next Christmas:)

  Will this be the season cMf is crowned?  041222  
Indeed the most astute followers of qw tdm are saying cmf is the best team right now in qw tdm. It would be about time they take home the crown. Having been second to SR and LA/ds in recent seasons only contributes to the myth that these guys have a bit of a curse on their heads. Is it because they had and released dag? Is it because janne isn't active for them? Is it because fifi has a female poodle's name for a nick? Is it because of Vert or Dama or any other illustrious member of the long-lived clan? Man, no one can say for sure. But even if we can all agree the most skilled team to have placed well in so many events, and to never won the big crown would NOT be cmf; sadly that perpetual bridesmaid's role must be placed on perhaps cmf's biggest national rival, tVs. But if you grab your favourite QW Historian -- who else but Purity? -- and ask him how often cmf has finished close to the top but never actually won NQR the record is one that brings tears to the eyes of many a cmf fan. In the last NQR cmf didn't play as a clan. But prior to that, cmf finshed 2nd or 3rd in seasons 1, 2, 3 and 4. In season 5, you may recall the semifinal loss cmf had to ds? I won't bring up bad memories here for their fans, but that loss was heart wrenching. So close and yet not the champion. Each season has seen the champ chomp these cmf chumps along the way to the final. We tend to see the big rivalry in div1 as being between sr and la; but cmf fans really don't care for either of them.

And can you not see why? cmF has some badass NQR past experiences they wish to overcome this season...and sr and la have long stood in their way. This year will be no different imo. dag and his legeartis dudes will for sure have to turn on their monitors for any match versus cmf. Gaz thinks la will fight cmf in the finals and that cmf will have the edge. However do not forget the curse of the dag. I see SR giving LA a serious run for the other finals spot. Some say para is playing some of the finest tdm of his career. I say we must determine that by how he and his team play in the 1/4 and semifinals. Will hib be in good shape? If so, SR might rise up to smite cmf and la on their way to four consecutive championships. But I say that SR dream will be upset by neither cmf or la this year. Look to the Griffyn, the long time quaker who has always been a smashing dueler, but has now shown us that his tdm skills are worthy of serious consideration. In gtg the maps e1m2, dm2 and cmt 3 are must needed wins in order to beat teams like cmf or sr or la. I put my money on them to do it this year, especially if they get ul playing dm2 for them. mrl is even playing dm3 better then I have ever seen him play it; but dm3 will not be a counted on map for gtg, though it will for those who fight gtg.

In gtg the cMf fans may find another source for the continuation of their nqr curse.....then, again, it will depend on how e1m2, dm2 and cmt 3 go. I wish strength and honour to those about to battle. I will write more as things progress....this will help to make up for the fact that much of what I think usually goes the other way :p

///Merry Christmas from xhrl the maple leaf

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