Saena Mathash

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Saena Mathash was a goalkeeper on the Zwangzug national football team during World Cup 42. Domestically, she played for Namiri Forest.

Like Zwangzug as a whole, the Namiri region became much more avid about football during the national team's semifinal run in World Cup 36. Even more than the rest of the country, the Namirites were impressed by the environmentalist/left-wing tactics of haimaidu's Errinundera and Cassie Lee's Ariddia, while also being cognizant of how more defensively-minded players might bring welcome traits to their nation. Forest, in Guariday, adopted an unrelenting defensive, "green" outlook when they began to play in the MUFN. (The larger 1./ would not exist until twenty-four cycles later. By then Sharag, the "gateway to the southwest," had given rise to Namiri Independent. In their tendency towards "neutral" tactics and a more universalist image, they might well be said to be closer heirs of Mathash's legacy than the Guariday club, but identifying her with them too far is anachronistic.)

Mathash, though a child then, was one of many caught up in the dreams of the young team. By World Cup 42, she was Miranda Chen's backup at Forest. Talking her way onto the national team would require some subtlety about her true aims (a task at which Luke Mandell had failed three cycles prior), but she was able to in turn convince Doodlypants Mcgimpy and Andrew Card that defensive "specialization" would help the team. The latter, who had newly been appointed captain, was furious once he realized the truth. An opening loss to microstate An Blascaod Mór, followed by a draw against unheralded Kosovoe, did little to help matters.

Yet as Card attempted to strike a balance between bolstering Mathash's confidence and lowering her expectations, she and the team quickly found their footing. Zwangzug went undefeated the rest of the qualifiers, topped Group F in the proper, and reached the final at the Obelisco Monumental. With minutes remaining in a tied game, Mathash proved she'd made a difference in dramatic if unexpected fashion; Card's tactical foul against an obvious Deuce Zadora goalscoring opportunity put the game in her hands, but Kiso Night would convert the penalty for Valanora's title.

The Zwangzug teammates' unlikely trust led to a further camaraderie; Mathash and Card would partner to revitalize football at the grassroots level, as it once had been in Namiri, after the demolition of the national sporting headquarters. Though it took years, Zwangzug did return to the World Cup, and have boasted legal formations ever since.