Their disappointment was obvious when the final whistle finally declared defeat. For the first time since 2007, the Kobra Ladies from Berlin have not become North German champions of the women’s football Bundesliga.
In a long, balanced semi-final on Sunday in Hamburg against the Pioneers Amazons, the Berliners lost 12:31 and thus also missed entering the Ladies Bowl, which will take place for the first time since 2019.
“Our goal for the season was different. We wanted to reach the final and defend the German championship. But it wasn’t meant to be,” says Constanze Klatt, wide receiver with the Kobras and part of the team for many years. Due to the defeat, the Berlin team won’t win their 13th championship this year.
After the long break caused by corona, the Kobra Ladies had another strong season overall, despite a lot of fluctuation in the squad due to the pandemic, during which only online training was possible for a long time. “We probably had a lot of departures due to the corona, but that’s actually the case at the end of each season that some players decided to do something different. We’re still an amateur league and it’s not a professional sport,” Klatt points out.
Nevertheless, with 15 rookies, i.e. players who play football for the first time, there was a surprising number of additions. During the season, the Kobras often won easily. Only the Amazons were able to put them under pressure in the first leg, but still lost in the Julia, albeit narrowly. “The Amazons are always a strong opponent, but of course it was also our fault,” says Klatt.
In front of around 200 spectators, the Amazons got off to a better start on their “homefield” and went through two touchdowns and an extra point with a 13-0 lead in the first of four quarters. After that, the Kobras, under the guidance of head coach Marco Meyer, came into play better and scored their first touchdown.
As the game progressed, the Berliners got their second touchdown only a short time later, but were unable to equalize because they missed two extra points, so that it was 13:12 for Hamburg at halftime. “We started with three quarterbacks, two of them are rookies. They controlled the game well in the first half and got us across the field well. The only thing that didn’t work out in the end was the scores, apart from the two touchdowns,” sums up Klatt.
A different picture emerged in the second round. Due to Hamburg’s ever-stronger defensive, Berlin’s offensive hardly got any traction, which should take revenge at some point. Hamburg dominated the game in the second half and was able to extend its lead further and further.
“The last move in the first half ended with an injury and that carried over into the second half a bit,” said Klatt. The first quarterback was very battered and could not continue playing. A big loss for the cobras that they couldn’t fully compensate for until the end.
The Ladies Bowl, which will be held in Stuttgart on September 24th, has been taking place without the Berlin Kobra Ladies for many years.
According to Klatt, the Berliners keep their fingers crossed for the Hamburgers “to at least keep the pot in the north”.