To call a Match-an-Image competition a ‘Bun fight’ is a bit of an understatement. Gone was the button-lipped silence of our normal club competitions: instead the poor judge, Steve Lawrenson ARPS APAGB of Reigate Photographic Society, had to withstand a constant barrage of heckling abuse from the audience, two thirds of whom understandably disagreed with his adjudications. But it felt great to let rip like this and subject a judge to the kind of emotional torment they often put us through, and, give him his due, Steve took it all in very good spirit, pretending sometimes to be swayed by one team or another, then changing his mind again.

The occasion was a three-way Match-an-Image competition at Cheam Camera Club where we pitted ourselves against the host club and Carshalton Camera Club. Each club took turns to lead with an image and the other two had to display one within 30 seconds that matched it in some way. The lead club scored a point automatically, then a point for a successful ‘match’ in the judges opinion. A further point was awarded to the best image projected, providing the judge had declared it a match.

We started off good, scoring the maximum available two points in 6 out of the first 10 rounds. By round 26 and the tea break, we were 3 points ahead of our nearest rival. By the end of the evening and after a gruelling 51 rounds, we slipped back a little. Nevertheless PhotoCraft won the contest with 63 points, a point ahead of each of our rivals. Getting good at this aren’t we?

So congratulations everyone as this was very much a team effort. Thanks to the many of you who offered your pictures to use. We had plenty to make our final selection from. The selection was made by Mandy, Dave S and myself who tried to get the best balance of subject matter, matching difficulty and image quality to optimise our chances of winning. We included at least one picture from everyone who sent some when choosing the 60 required. Only 51 were actually used, so if you didn’t see any of your own, they would have been among the 9 that didn’t see the light of day.

Mark managed to get this shot of PhotoCraft members returning to their seats after a punch-up with the Carshalton supporters sitting next to us (a couple of bloodied noses but no bones broken :x)…

An impressive 20+ of you turned up to add your voices to the ruckus. Thank you for your support on an evening I’m sure was enjoyed by everybody. Thanks also to Mark for masterminding the event and for his sterling performance at the laptop on the night, and to Brian G for kindly lending us his projector screen.

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