With a trick and a flick Sam masters Subbuteo-ful game
Next the table-topper is off to Germany for his mini World Cup
A CITY youngster is hoping to make his mark as a mini-Fabio Capello as he leads his tabletopping team into battle at a world cup with a difference this summer.
Sam Curtis is hoping his championship winning squad will score success at the World Subbuteo Cup in Germany this September with the use a variety of flicks and tricks.
Jack Hunt School pupil Sam recently lifted the British Under 15s Subbuteo Championship trophy after winning the tournament in Leicester and has now set his sights on bigger and better things.
The 15-year-old, of Peddars Way, Longthorpe, Peterborough has been one of the top players in the country for a number of years and has already competed in three World Cups.
While he has never gone beyond the quarter-final stage in the individual event, he did help England Under 19s reach the semi-final in the 2004 World Cup in Bologna, Italy, when he was aged just nine.
He said: “I was unbeaten in the National Championships, winning the final 2-0. It is very competitive, especially because we were playing for a place in the world cup.
“It is nice to go to any tournament, but going abroad is really special.”
Subbuteo is in the blood for the Tottenham Hotspur and Lincoln City fan as his dad Adrian has also represented England.
And like England coach Fabio Capello, Sam has been working on his tactics to ensure that he has the edge when he goes up against the best players on the planet.
He said: “It is very much like real football, although obviously there are some differences.
“The real key is to keep your defence organised. It is vital to stop them from scoring.
“If you can keep control of the ball, then it is easier to get the ball up front to the strikers.
“At the world cup, the main competitors will be the Italians and the Greeks, who are very good.
“But I think I have a good chance of getting through this time.”
But while he was plotting England football glory, Sam was not so confident that Steven Gerrard, Wayne Rooney and John Terry would be bringing home the World Cup from South Africa.
He said: “I can’t see England winning. I think they will get beaten in the semis or quarters and either Brazil or Argentina will win the competition.”
table-topping performance: Sam Curtis who is competing in the Subbuteo World Cup in Germany.