Gormball Champions: A Sitdown with Gargarox Isafuhla
Tucked away up in the Virtupets Space Station is former Gormball Champion, Gargarox Isafuhlarg. He’s gone on the record saying that he has two passions in his life: making bizarre recipes as head Chef at the Grundos Cafe and playing Gormball. For years people have laughed, saying that is no good at either of his passions, but that hasn’t stopped this former champion from pursuing both.
While this former champion has experienced a winning drought, he is by no means bad at Gormball! For Pete’s sake, he won the tournament in Year 11! You don’t just win a Gormball Championship with luck. It takes real skill. A lot of his critics cite that Doctor Sloth’s failure to appear at the match, being replaced by Kevin, was the sole reason that Gargarox won. All Gormball projections had Doctor Sloth taking home that first place. When he didn’t show up on game day, all Gargarox had to do was seize the opportunity, and that is exactly what he did. He played the perfect game and he took home the gold! To top it all off, his win was not disqualified like several other Championship games. He played an honest and fair game, unlike Brian, who has cheated twice since the inception of this game.
While he is on a three-year drought, there is hope that he can become this year's reigning champion. If one championship is not enough evidence that he has the skills to compete with the best players, let us not forget that he has held several third place victories over the years. It was an immense honor to be granted an interview with the Chef prior to this year’s Gormball Championship and I am excited to share his story for all of Neopia to see.
Thanks for taking time out of your busy schedule to chat with me! I’m just gonna jump right into some questions. First off, are you sure you’re okay to cook and interview?
Aha! My best cooking concoctions have been born during interviews, so I have no doubt that I can cook during this interview. My customers have been asking when I’ll make my “next big thing” so hopefully it is today.
Oh you’ve been interviewed before?
Yes by the uhhh, health inspector! He had a lot of questions about how I run the Grundos Cafe.
Erm, did it go well?
Got my best grade ever! It was a C! My first time passing. I’ve even got it taped to that fridge over there.
Uhhhh congrats on passing your “interview.” Don’t worry, our little chit chat won't be graded.
Hah! I would pass it with flying colors if you did!
I am sure you would. Anyway….Obviously, you know the Gormball Championships are coming up, what are you doing to prepare for it?
I’ve been getting up really early and coming into the Cafe to practice. Unfortunately, I don’t have any Gormballs to play with so I have been using some of my rounder foods like the Blue Rambus, Blue Ice Apple, and my personal favorite, the Deep-Fried Gormball. I’ve been really focused on my timing and passing techniques, so I think my game is going to be more vocal.
Well, those are certainly unique balls to play with! Have you ever hurt yourself with one?
I’ve burned myself on a fresh Deep-Fried Gormball but that’s the extent of it. One of my practice partners got hit in the noggin with the Blue Ice Apple and it definitely left a mark. He’s okay though! Just won’t return my calls.
Oh I'm sorry about that. You mentioned your game being more vocal, what do you mean by that?
As you know, the Gormball explodes based on a time component. As I’ve been working on my timing, I’ve found physically counting the seconds for every player has helped me calculate if and when the ball will explode. I use this tactic to time my own passes. I tried internalizing my counting, but I always lost track, so I’ve adapted to just shouting it.
Aren’t you afraid your counting will help the other players too?
Hahaha! No of course not! I made up my own number language so they won’t know what the heck I am saying.
Any chance I can hear a preview of this new language?
My lips are sealed until after the tournament.
So be honest with me, do you think you have a shot at placing this year. Everyone’s been saying your win a few years back was a fluke.
What kind of competitor would I be if I said I didn’t have a shot at placing? I know I haven’t been performing like I used to, but I was letting my love for Grundos Cafe distract me from the trophy. This year is going to be different though! I’ve got some good help in place to keep things running while I’m out of town for the Championship. I really believe I’ll do great this year.
I’m definitely rooting for you this year! You are an honest player and a great role model here in Virtupets Space Station! What’s your take on Brian and his disqualifications? Why is he still allowed to play?
You know, I’ve been competing with Brian for years now and I think he’s a great guy off the field. If I'm being honest with you though, I’m not entirely sure why he is still allowed to play. To win twice and be disqualified twice just doesn’t seem fair to me. You know, a lot of people love watching the Championship and I just feel like its unfair when there are rigged balls on the field. I mean heck, even a suspension might teach the guy a lesson! I’m just really hoping he will play an honest game this year. Brian, if you are reading this article please leave the rigged balls at home!
Wow! You are really giving me some great stuff -Err uh, is your food burning there?
It’s a Lost Desert inspired concoction! It is supposed to smell burnt, I promise! I’m testing out a new line of ethnic foods since it’s a little hard to travel down to Neopia from up here.
Sounds interesting! Hey, you guys might be far from Neopia, but you definitely have a strong fan base.
I wouldn’t say I have a strong fan base! I mean don't get me wrong I have some great supporters, but Doctor Sloth has the support of everyone up here.
Speaking of Sloth, do you think he’ll make an appearance at this year's Championship?
The rumors up here are that he will. I wouldn’t hold my breath though.
Alright, this is my last question for you. Who is your favorite competitor to play against?
Oh that’s an easy one! My buddy Thyassa. He’s the best Gormball competitor in the world for a reason. I don’t think I have ever seen a smarter player in this game. He pushes me to be better than I am and honestly, I’ve tried to model parts of my game after him. If I can't win this year, I hope he does!
Thyassa is definitely a great player to watch play. Anyway, I thank you for sitting down to have a chat with me. I’m looking forward to watching you play in September!