Sydney was threatened with storms just as the second ZBall Pinball League final was kicking off at the Lord Raglan Hotel in Redfern. Wether the storms actually happened or not I don't think anyone noticed - the beer and laughs were free flowing and the conditions outside were of little concern.
In a fitting twist to the original format, the 'modern' machine meant for the second final was swapped with a classic, seeing as the classic set for the first final had to be switched with a modern... If you follow me. So the machine for the night was Wild Life - a great electro mechanical pinball machine that honestly converted a few people to the EM play style on the night. It was that popular with the competitors.
Same rules as normal - three games per player with their score averaged and then compared against everyone else. The lead switched a number of times and was held on occasion by Tim Chapman, Dana Pepcak, and Brian Grant, who all seemed likely to take the big prize at the end. However, with three rounds of 'buyins' (where players are invited to buy an extra game for - wait for it - $20!), Dana was holding on to the lead until the second last game of the night, where Marc Bell (hey that's me!) snatches the lead in a massive game! As fate would have it, Dana had the very last game of the night to play and so it was all on the line, but unfortunately she was unable to better her previous scores and Marc walked away with the win!
With a choice of either Diner or Doctor Who as the prize, after a small amount of consideration I decided to take Doctor Who which I will happily welcome to the collection.
A great night had by all, and ZBall continues into 2017 for competition 13 - still the longest running pinball tournament in Australia!