Beginner Gateball Captain Course at Strathfield Croquet Club

14 NSW players participated in a Beginner Captains course at Strathfield CC led by John and Penny Park of Hazelbrook CC.

At an introductory session in the clubhouse, participants brainstormed the characteristics of an effective captain. These were then grouped into two aspects: the Team skills and Thinking skills required to captain a successful Gateball team. These were to be the focus of the course.
Participants then headed outside for practical sessions, exploring the different stages of a game of Gateball and strategic play for each stage.
To illustrate Stage One, the platform building stage, two activities were undertaken. One, called ‘Blitzkrieg’, involved players, after passing Gate 1, shooting for Gate 2. Consequences were discussed,  before moving onto an activity identifying alternative standard plays, for example the “Gate 2 side strategy”.  (All these were identified from old World Gateball Union manuals!)
The concepts of ‘Thinking Numerically’ and ‘Controlling Space’ were introduced and then  ‘Space Controllers’, such as slides, bridges and attack balls, were discussed and then put into practice through mini games played on quarter courts. The mini games were devised specifically to challenge players to see opportunities to attack their opposition.
Finally, the group looked at the End Game. Two scenarios were used. The time pressure was horrific – in one scenario there were a couple of minutes left, no balls were on the court, other than one sitting on the goal pole. “Referees” were used and had to caution players about waiting until they were called before playing. Tension was high! As with each stage of the game,  the group considered the necessary team or people skills and the thinking skills required to successfully captain. 
Star of the show was, we believe, the youngest ever participant in a Gateball event, newly arrived  daughter of one of the course participants. At only a few weeks old, her presence was celebrated! 
Gateball Australia has appointed a High Performance Manager for Gateball and has offered support for a Captain Development Program in May this year to be held in Queensland. This session at Strathfield complements that initiative by providing a course for beginner captains. 
John Park, Level 3 Gateball Coach

Another Gateball Brainteaser

Geoff Crook from South Australia has sent us another conundrum from a recent game at Woodville. Please put your answers and comments in the ‘Leave a Reply’ box below.

The last 3 minutes

After a gap of at least 12 months, Woodville hosted a Sunday afternoon of Gateball on 7 November 2021.  The last game of the day was pretty unusual, with Red storming to a 15-1 lead after 12 minutes, and White’s solitary ball in play was an out-ball [Ball 6].

However, White fought back and the result was the position below – 5 points behind with a couple of minutes left.

Ball 10 is to play, and assume Ball 6 plays last. 

Can White win?  Please explain the sequence of play leading to your answer.

What happened next? Solution

The last post had the scenario below together with a short video of what I did on the day, and posed the question “What happened next”

Thanks to everyone who commented.

I’ve always said if you can’t be good be lucky and I really rode my luck with this one.

The video below shows what happened – Ball 5 touched Ball 8 and bombarded Ball 4 on the line near gate 3.  Ball 8 bounced off Ball 4 and knocked out Ball 2, with Ball 8 landing on the court near Ball 7 (which had been sparked to its position near gate 3 earlier in the turn!).

Geoff Crook

What happened next?

Geoff Crook has devised this sneaky scenario for your consideration. Let us have your answers in the ‘Leave a Reply’ box below. We’ll publish the answer in about a week’s time.

When I was a lad there was a long-running quiz show on TV called “A Question of Sport”.  One of the rounds was the “What happened next” round where a video would be played and the contestants would guess, believe it or not, what happened next?

So, I thought I would expand on the scenario concept and ask not only what would you do as Red 5 in the scenario below, but also ask “What happened next” in the video which shows what I actually did………

Here’s what I did, and question 2 is “What happened next?”

Gateball Puzzle #7

Thanks to Philip Brown from the Kew Croquet Club who submitted this puzzle based on a real situation in the 2018 Victorian Gateball Championship.

Readers should leave a reply in the comments.

Gateball Puzzle #6: The Better Part of Valour

The score is 8-6, Ball 1 is to play.  What should Ball 1 do in this scenario? Why?  Note that the Gate-touch of Ball 7 through Gate 3 onto Ball 9 is available.

Previous gateball puzzles are available at the links below:

Gateball puzzle #1
Gateball puzzle #2 – difficult
Gateball puzzle #3
Gateball puzzle #4
Gateball puzzle #5
Gateball puzzle #6

Gateball puzzle #1 also included information on the format of the puzzle and outlined how you can submit your own puzzle.