World Cup Alicante 2023 – Our Journey

It has been more than a week since a contingent of twenty-four Maltese Coaches set out to attend one of the largest World tournaments, the Blood Bowl World Cup in Alicante, Spain!! Outfitted with colorful team shirts, sparkling dice ready to roll, tokens and a hunger to play Blood Bowl, more than 2,232 coaches from every corner of the World attended the tournament with approximately 600 coaches coming from Spain.

Our journey started on the 5th September with an early flight from Malta International Airport to Valencia Manises Airport. After a two and a half hour flight, we boarded the metro to stop just outside the Estació del Nord Train Station. We caught the next train leaving for Alicante and arrived at Alicante Terminal Train Station just past seven in the evening.

Alicante was hot in various aspects. Sunny days, relaxing sea breeze and relaxed lifestyle.  Alicante was quite familiar in a sense that we all felt at home. The language barrier was easily overcome, with a mix of Italian, a couple of words in English and of course we couldn’t exclude a few phrases in Maltese here and there.  In the end we always managed to come to an understanding and got what we wanted. 

We had two days to relax before the hectic World Cup tournament, which we spent experiencing the local cuisine and visiting places. Our first stop was Santa Bárbara Castle and enjoyed  panoramic views of the city of Alicante from the top of the fort, then with a visit to the Bonfire Museum which ended beautifully with paella and sangria.

On Thursday evening, we attended the World Cup opening which was held at Dock Twelve, a seaside venue that could hold the massive number of participants, friends and families.  As a social sport, we were looking forward to meet with friends, we laughed and drank together, eagerly awaiting the start of the tournament.

Friday morning, we arrived at the Instituto Ferial de Alicante just on the outskirts of Alicante, only twenty minutes by bus. As soon as the coaches entered the massive venue, we were greeted with a goodie bag containing a tabletop pitch, game-related souvenirs and a unique event patch and commemorative coin.

The tension quickly escalated as the games were about to begin and everyone was ready to start rolling dice. We had a total of nine games spread throughout the weekend, spending almost twelve hours a day at the tournament. The hard work of the organization team meant that the tournament ran smoothly. We felt very lucky to have met kind and friendly opponents, who played Blood bowl in the best of spirits, all adding to the wonderful nature of the event.

The organizers have gone above and beyond to make all of us feel welcome and give us a taste of traditional Spanish cuisine. Overall, the food was good, as one would expect at similar events.  The event was run by numerous dedicated volunteers, who went into this huge endeavor with the best of intentions to provide the best tournament possible. The organizers  spent more than a year of their lives away from their loved ones to plan, organize and get the tournament up and running while facing problems along the way. 

In the end all nine rounds were played, touchdowns were scored, double ones and skulls were rolled and with all the yelling, fun and laughter, everyone enjoyed the game we love the most and had a blast at the World Cup!!!