2006 ITSF WORLD CUP OF TABLE SOCCER PROPELS ARCADE GAME TO TRUE 'SPORTS COMPETITION' STATUS - Hamburg, Germany Tournament Draws Top 'Foosball' Players from over 20 Countries

July 07, 2006 (PRLEAP.COM) Sports News
Hamburg, Germany - In a four day roller coaster of intensely competitive and emotional match play, the International Table Soccer Federation’s (ITSF) World Cup of Table Soccer came to a close late at night on Sunday, May 28, 2006. Held at the famed Fischauktionshalle in Hamburg, Germany, about 200 of the world’s most elite 'foosball' players competed as part of a 20-nation team playoff for the World Cup title. In all, over a thousand spectators and millions of TV viewers witnessed a weekend full of twists, surprises and upsets as each of the world’s top-ranked teams fell to highly charged and aggressive challengers.

Each nation, having selected eight to ten of their country’s best players, competed in a combination of doubles and singles events for both men and women. In a true test of all around foosball skills, competition took place on five different ITSF 'Official' styles of tables: Tornado Table Soccer™, Bonzini™, Garlando, EuroSoccer, and Roberto-Sport, with Tornado having been selected as 'home' table by the majority of the nations competing.

Highlights of the weekend included the upset of Belgium, whose team included world #1-ranked Frederico Collignon of Liege, Belgium, by host country Germany and the further upset of Germany in the final by Austria. Other features included a demonstration challenge match between the Chinese National Juniors Team and Germany’s Junior Team, with Germany edging out China for the honors. But the match of the weekend was surely that between the United States and France. In a grueling four and a half hour foosball marathon, the United States fought all the way back from a four games to one deficit, and in a final deciding game went into a sudden death playoff, with each team going point for point until finally the French broke serve and converted their advantage with another point to win. Regardless of outcome, the match was simply stunning — the intensity, resolve, concentration, professionalism, phenomenal skill and the unmatched unity demonstrated by the American team; the undivided and emotionally involved attention of a packed, standing room only audience; and an opponent that was absolutely and obsessively determined to win — it was incredible. Even more amazing, all of this was for the World Cup title only: the pride of team and country, and being the best that that represents. Said U.S. team player Dave Gummeson afterwards, 'I’ve played foosball for thousands of dollars in countless U.S. and World Championships, but I’ve never, ever fought so hard for every single point as I did today.' Indeed, many spectators described it as 'the greatest match ever.'

With promotions tied directly into the upcoming FIFA World Cup of Soccer, also hosted in Hamburg, over 60 television and other news media covered the tournament throughout the weekend. Sponsors of the event included Carlsberg Brewery, Argo Personal, Sportstadt Hamburg, Fabula-Film and the DEHOGA Hamburg hotel and restaurant association, while sponsors of the U.S. National Foosball Team are Nike™, Brunswick’s Tornado Table Soccer™, Bonzini™ USA, Tornello Enterprises, Foosball.com, Rod-lock.com and TTR MasterWraps.

Other ITSF 2006 World Tour events are scheduled to take place in Austria, Belgium, Canada, Costa Rica, France, Germany, Japan, Mexico, Poland, South Africa, United States, the UK and more. In fact, this year’s tour will be the largest worldwide table soccer pro tour ever!!

For additional details about the event and the sport of table soccer, please see the following websites:

www.tischfussball-wm-2006.de/eng_teams.html - Official World Cup of Table Soccer Results/website
www.table-soccer.org - ITSF web site/international rankings
www.foosball.com/ustsf - Official U.S. Table Soccer Federation website
www.foosball.com - General information about the sport of table soccer

For more information, photos, or for an electronic version of this release, please contact:
Larry Davis, Executive Director, USTSF, Tel: 1-563-580-9485; Email: larry.davis@ustsf.foosball.com

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