SPAGames started life in 1998 just before the start of that years World Cup in France. Russia 2018 marked our twentieth anniversary, and what a tournament it was.
In my opinion Russia 2018 was the most entertaining World Cup since Italia ’90. I don’t think there’s any coincidence that my enjoyment and England getting all the way to the semi-finals happened in both tournaments. This year all of the matches were so entertaining and the big boys falling by the wayside made for a really unpredictable tournament as well.
Our Winner: Chris Eastment
Chris started the tournament well, being equal top scorer in the Group Match Predictions with Jason Brown and picking up an early £9. Jason would go on to be ultimately disappointed by finishing 18th and probably blaming the Spanish with their early exit!
Not such qualms for Chris though, picking up 60 points out of 80 for the Group Winners and seeing his Pot B France take the title to earn him another £72.
Chris will head into the new Premier Predictions game on a high looking to improve on three tenth places in his last five games.
Runner-up: Debra Kaye
Debra’s first (and probably only) foray into SPAGames lead her to Runner-up and £45! Having all four Pot Teams in the Quarter-Finals certainly helped cement a decent finish.
With no real knowledge of football, Debra’s success is either a wake up call to our so called game playing experts or testament to the simplicity and wide appeal of our game.
Third Place: Steve Keay
Steve’s Third Place was only secured once France finally got their hands on the Jules Rimet Trophy. Had Croatia been crowned World Champions then Dave Mason would be banking the £27 prize!
But as it is, Steve collects a third place to go with his third place in his first Premier Predictions game at the end of last season.
The coveted(!) tenth place was eventually shared between EURO16 Champion Alex Bridges, EURO16 Runner-up Mark Vincent and new to SPAGames Leigh Holley.
All three of them basically got to play for free, picking up £6 each.
Unusually three of our top six (including the top two) aren’t on Facebook and weren’t able to join in the Messenger banter.
For me a successful tournament isn’t how many enter (although it can hemp) or how much I win, it’s about engagement. The ‘bants’ on FB was the best I’ve seen so far for one of our games and the feedback post-tournament was also greatly appreciated.
It’s really encouraging to me that many of the positive comments came from players finishing lower down the table – it’s a game after all and lots of players seem to have derived some fun from it.
Thanks everyone for playing and the kind words you shared on messenger – makes all the effort worthwhile.
“Awesome!! Thanks for doing this Simon! Always a highlight of the summer, and the weekends during the season”– Alex Bridges (10th and European Champion)
“Echo comments thanks @Simon has been a real highlight of the World Cup for my son and I, definitely created interest in every game and I’ve really enjoyed your commentary too. Can’t wait for Premier League competition to start!”– Steve Keay (3rd and just second game)
“Ditto!!!! Just 1 criticism – prize for 4th would of been nice!! “– Matt Carter (4th and first game)
“Cheers @Simon Paul Allen very enjoyable even tho I was crap“– Martin Magookin (33rd and first game)
“Cheers for another cracking tournament simon either though i was pretty crap. Looking forward to the premier league now! Cheers Dude!”– Derek Wilson (32nd and first international tournament)
“Congratulations to all the winners. Thanks Simon I have so enjoyed it even though I was useless. You have worked so hard and done it brilliantly. Looking forward to the Premier league competition”– Cynth West (26th and current One Round Wonder holder)
“thought i knew a bit about football being a season ticket holder at the mighty Craven Cottage for decades…..but not so it seems …finishing only in 23rd place…but i at least beat my mrs in 26th place…maybe its the Fulham influence….thanks mate for your hard work in running the competition…its made the World Cup even more fun…looking forward to seeing Fulham back in the Premier League and maybe doing a little better..cheers”– Keith West (23rd and recent returner to SPAGames)