A group of farmers found a novel use for their old tractors – by using them to play a giant game of FOOTBALL.
The epic match was held at South Hams Vintage Rally, in Knightsbridge, South Devon, by the South Hams Vintage Machinery club, who were trying to find a fun way to use their old tractors.
The hilarious game has two participants on each team, the Big Reds and Little Greys, who competed in two games last week on August 11, 2019.
The game has every rule that a usual football match would have, except they can’t have more than two touches once on the dribble, otherwise it would turn into a demolition derby.
The Chairman of the Machinery club, Matthew Shute, 39, said: “The idea came from one of our members, Keith Collins, who brought it up at a committee meeting as a fun event for our rally.
“It’s just a normal game of football with slightly different rules, each tractor could only touch the ball twice to avoid collisions.
“We even had a referee and his word was final – if he didn’t like what he saw he had red and yellow cards at the ready.
“Everyone loved it, we had kids who were screaming and shouting at the players to encourage the game on, it’s something we haven’t seen in the west country before which is what we aimed to do to attract people in.
“Now we’re making plans to improve, we’ll have a meeting to decide how to make the game better next year and hopefully get even more people involved.
“Playing it was really enjoyable, it was something new and none of us had ever played tractor football, so it was a great thing to be part of and a fantastic moment for the club.”
The eye-catching game was played for the first time earlier this month and looks to be a regular fixture for the club in the future.
Married father-of-two, Matthew, said: “It could even be used as a format for other games, tractor basketball could definitely work.
“It would be amazing to get more teams involved, and maybe even create a league to compete with each other in.
“The main thing is that we all had a lot of fun, everyone enjoyed watching the game.”
On the day, only two games were played and each team won a game each, making it a pretty even affair for all involved – which leaves a great cliff-hanger for the next game to be the decider on who the greatest tractor ball team in the country is.
Matthew said: “Each team’s fans were very passionate, the teams were there to entertain but the crowd were really good, they backed who they supported.
“I think if we can get that sort of passion from people watching then who’s to say this can’t become a bigger attraction for years to come.”
The match was put on by South Hams Vintage Machinery club, who celebrated their 45th year in operation with their yearly rally, filled with amusements for anyone who wished to attend – but tractor football took the hotseat this year as the peoples favourite part with everyone gathered around the pitch for kick off.
Matthew said: “One of the hardest parts of the game was avoiding each other whilst the game was in-play.
“We came close to collisions a couple of times, but we have been training every week since February to get ourselves up to scratch and collisions were minimal.
“Luckily this time, everyone left the pitch with a clean bill of health, but a very dirty tractor.”