The crowd at the Dog House watching the Super Bowl are subdued. The script is not going to plan.
The San Francisco 49ers may be the favourites, but the Baltimore Ravens are on the verge of an upset victory. All eyes on the giant outdoor screen witness the Niners embark on a last-minute flourish after having clawed themselves back into it after a halftime deficit of 24-6. But the Ravens will hold on in the end to edge it 34-31. Niners fans are barking mad.
For many, the waitresses in their football officials uniforms no longer seem so amusing.
Ravens talisman Ray Lewis predicted it would be all about destiny and he was spot on.
New Orleans welcomed back local boy Jacoby Jones who scored two of the most spectacular touchdowns in Super Bowl history on Sunday.
Jones latched onto a long Joe Flacco pass for his first touchdown. Then after Beyonce’s high energy halftime show when she actually sang live this time, Jones pulled off an incredible return from the kickoff, stretching 108 yards for the longest ever Super Bowl play.
Flacco got the MVP – which is customary for winning quarterbacks – but there was plenty of argument for Jones to take it home, too.
That spectacular Jones return came seconds into the third quarter before a power outage sent the Mercedes-Benz Superdome into partial darkness for 34 minutes. The crowd was driven to distraction.
Power restored, the Niners regrouped, piled on the points and came sensationally close to pulling off a memorable comeback, but sadly for their Cayman fans, they just fell short.
Lewis was ecstatic to win his second Super Bowl ring on the day he retired. One of the sport’s most controversial characters, the veteran linebacker overcame allegations of involvement in a double murder and in the game’s build up speculation that he was involved in performance-enhancing drugs.
Flacco equalled Joe Montana’s record for throwing 11 postseason touchdowns without an interception.
Much was made of the sibling rivalry between Ravens coach John Harbaugh and younger brother Jim, who had steered San Francisco to its sixth Super Bowl appearance. Never beaten in their five previous championship games, this time history was not on Jim’s side.
John showed sympathy for his equally combative and ambitious brother.
Stafford Jackson is a hardcore Ravens follower and used to play locally in Cayman’s popular flag football scene.
Jackson watched triumphantly at the Dog House and was celebrating even before the end. “The Niners were favourites by far but we all knew the Ravens were going to take that lead,” he beams.
“It was actually very close at the end, down to the wire. I support the Ravens because Ray Lewis is a great defensive player.
“He is their MVP for quite some time now. He basically has the attitude of bringing his team up from the rail and also makes sure these guys are driven to win.
“As this was Ray Lewis’s last season, I think the Ravens will be heavily tested to do a repeat. Without their main man, who is a great defensive player and also fabulous safety Ed Reed, it will be very difficult.
“Flacco is a great quarterback with a superb arm, but it’s a tough ask. I must say one thing about the Harbaugh brothers – the best brother just won!”
Another happy Ravens supporter leaving the Dog House was Jeremy “Bubbles” Josephs, normally a Denver Broncos fan but he temporarily switched allegiance for Super Bowl.
“My team didn’t make it so this was the next best thing,” Bubbles shrugs. “I felt a little scared when the Niners could have tied it up with the conversion but when it didn’t work out I felt we could close it out.”