Bangkok Veterans League Season #4, Month #2 02/Mar/2008 • Harrow School
Mar/2008 Vets League finish with another Cosmos victory
Vets League continued its high-flying streak with another huge 18-team tournament in this month, adding 2 more new teams in its roster: the new offshoot — JFC Blue Penguins, and the new label on the old faces — Crossbar Strikers. With the way this thing is growing we're going to need a bigger venue to hold the tournaments!
We started just a bit late, partly due to Pickled Liver Stuart's lively FDS Kids Tournament (many of us enjoyed the kids running the ball, reminiscing our own childhood), still managed to end the day with the sun still brightly shining. I must thank my new techno-wonder tool — the wireless microphone — for keeping all of us on the clock from whereever I was on the venue, despite Anders and Terry's hapless search for me (on their "other" left) to record Crossbar's game score. Some thought I was making the announcement of the fixtures from the restroom, which I need to give it a try next time
I also thank Winking Frog's Graham, BSL's Roland and Yingcharoen's Sirichai for the help they provided throughout the day. Yes, it takes a number of hands to get this show rolling, and I hope more volunteers would step forward in the future months.
This time, the 18-team, 61-game fixture was familiar to all of us, as we have done it successfully in Sep/2007 and in Dec/2007 before.
It was a hot Sunday throughout the day, and everyone was scrambling for water all the time. The action on the pitch was much of scramble as well, each team scrapping any point they can in order to be able end up in the Top-4 of the 2 groups, and enter the Cup competition.
Perhaps the biggest shock of all was to find usually hard-fighting teams like Yingcharoen Standbys and Swiss United at the very bottom of their respective groups, dreading the moment to play for the BadCup! later in the day.
The Shield Division QFs produced some interesting matchups, seeing LeCoq, Crossbar, JFC Bears and BSL Apprentices take down BU Japan, Campioni, Germans and JFC Penguins respectively.
In Cup Division QFs, Winking Frog, Anatolia and Cosmos overcame their opposition in Medicals, BSL Originals and British Club respectively. One victim of the QFs this month was LesGaulois narrowly losing to Harrow Cooks in an exciting game.
LeCoq continued their winning run with a high-wire 7-6 penalty-shootout victory over Crossbar in the Shield Division SFs, while BSL Apprentices were getting comfortable with the Vets format in their 2nd entry, and were on the winning side over JFC Bears.
The Shield Final favoured the experienced side in LeCoq over BSL Apprentices, and saw them clinch a narrow 1-0 victory over the newcomers, improving their VetsLeague Global Ranking from 21st last month to 9th overall this month.
And, in the bottom-end championship match of the day, we sent Yingcharoen and Swiss to one of the available pitches way, way out there, at the end of which messengers brought the news that the Swiss win the BadCup! on an extra-time 1-0 loss, handing Yingcharoen the Bowl! (17th overall) trophy. According to the Vets League record books, this is the "first-ever" BadCup! win for the Swiss, and I'm sure they will be looking to go up in the upcoming months (as nowhere else to go, but up), hopefully with their influential leader Dino at the helm.
There were couple of cracking games in the Cup Division SFs. Winking Frog and Harrow Cooks finding 1 goal each in the regular time, put themselves into the dreaded penalty-shoot outs. Since we changed the penalty-shootout rules this month from 3 penalties each team to sudden-death format, the winning team would need nerves of steel to pull themselves into the Grand Final — and that's exactly what Winking Frog's Paul did on the first shot, and Harrow Cooks couldn't.
The 2nd Cup SF seemed like a familiar matchup these days, Cosmos hosting Anatolia, the result of which seems to be favouring Cosmos generally. And, this month was no exception with Cosmos pulling out a closely fought 2-1 victory to carry themselves into yet another Grand Final in the Vets.
The 3rd place match between Anatolia and Harrow Cooks was played in a very friendly atmosphere, Anatolia wrapping up their 3rd overall ranking for the 2nd time in as many months.
And, after waiting a bit for Gonzague to finish his goalkeeping duties in LeCoq's Shield Final and moving over to Cosmos's goal, we were ready to roll in a repeat of Jul/2006 and Sep/2007 Grand Finals, pitting Cosmos against Winking Frog once again.
Cosmos wasted no time getting on the board right off the kickoff whistle, which Winking Frog replied in kind rather quickly. However, obviously, Cosmos was the stronger side of the two, stringing 2 more goals in quick succession before the end of the 13 min derby.
With this championship, Cosmos got their 2-in-a-row streak on a roll, in hopes of surpassing Vikings's 4-in-a-row consecutive wins record from 2006 season.
At the end of the day, the following were the full list of rankings, the winners joyful in their well-earned trophies, and the losers enjoying their hard-fought beer-bucket coupons from our new sponsor, DownUnder Sports Bistro in Sukhumvit Soi 23.
Congratulations to Cosmos, and to all the other teams that took part in yet another successful edition of the Vets League. I hope everyone had a good time, meeting up with friends, as well playing the game we love.
With this opportunity, all the Vets thank Kh. Sorot of ChefsXP for taking care of the water and soft-drinks on the day. We are looking forward to seeing more of him, perhaps on the pitches , in the rest of the season.
My sincere thanks go to everyone who showed up, as well as those who helped in the organization. This time, I was able to get a few minutes here-&-there on the pitch, and was able to utilize my new Ronaldinho-10 wheels in making a few masterful assists. More goals (and plenty more of them!) to follow in future months
From: Terry Team: Crossbar Strikers Date: 03/Mar/2008
Great tourney yesterday. . . . . even though we did not live up to our own expectations ;) . . . . . need a goalscorer. You know anyone, haha.?
From: Roland Team: BSL Veterans Date: 06/Mar/2008
Thanks for the marvellous and smooth running March Vets League event.
Our players enjoy the day too mut...!
All of us were almost walking on crutches for the last 2 games but, however (= 40 Baht) it was worth the pain.
Keep on going EG.
From: Wayne Team: British Club Date: 08/Mar/2008
Another fantastic tournament, EG, which ran very smoothly.
From: Dominique Team: LeCoq French Date: 08/Mar/2008
Thanks again for a beautiful tournament where the Invincible (this time) and Unique (always) LeCoq won the Shield! with some luck, and after going through dramatic moments.
I would like to make 2 proposals which I hope will be seen as positive:
The Exceptional Fun and Friendship trophy:
An official FairPlay! trophy has been awarded, and this one begs to be different; it rewards anybody, not only players, that does anyhing to make the tournament more Fun, social and Friendly.
Let me give you a perfect exemple which occured in this last event.
For poor reasons, but no ill intentions, LeCoq picked Anders as the player to watch in every game we play against him. We have always considered Anders as the most experienced and technical player in the tournament, in other words , the best allround player who makes a difference (of course Kenny is another great player, but he mostly and "kindly" always plays at the back when Anders plays as striker).
Every time we face him, he is the scorer; as we try to compensate age with tactics, we intentionally try to neutralize him in every game, and for this purpose we send our most committed defender, Olivier. I must admit it never occured to me that this was not a tactic that goes well with the spirit of the tournament and I should have known it could have ended very badly.
Our game with Crossbar, Anders new team, started with some serious "covering" of Anders; within minutes Anders had received one or two strong tackles (standing tackles but, Anders probably still has the red marks on his calves), and was answering with provocating and disturbing verbal callings. I thought this game would end badly, but as it developed, things calmed down and the game ended with a draw.
I noticed that Olivier did not get embroiled, and did not try to take on Anders as usual. Anders did not always play on Olivier's side. Though Crossbar had a better team on that day, we beat them on penalty, and I thought Anders would be angry and complain.
To my big surprise, and great joy and relief, Anders instead came to congratulate us (which was indeed deserved as we were the underdog team and we played that game with heart). This was part of the rule EG had set, to shake hands at the end of games, and Anders had clearly gone one step further. Considering the earlier animosity, I thought that gesture was an exceptional one. It defused immediately all bad feelings and belliquous thoughts we accumulated over the games.
If you all agree I would like to create and award the first Fun and Friendship Trophy to Anders and request him to share it with Olivier.
VetsLeague Global Rankings (VGR):
I had not yet found the time to comment on the VGR.
My first thought is: why a VGR when we do so well without it! Can anyone tell me? Does anyone need it? Aren't we having enough Fun and creating unbelievable Friendship? I have not yet looked at it because I get no kick when looking at ranking !!
Unless we imagine a VGR that promotes fun and fairness.
Top 4 teams in the ranking start each game with a 2 goals handicap! Next 4 teams start with 1 goal. Let them work a little more to get their ranking. Handicap review every 3 months.
For every player over 50, 45, 40, add X, Y, Z points (to be agreed)
Any team contributing to the day organisation get X points
Any team bringing a sponsor or free booze food or anything to share get X points
Other ideas welcome to make the VGR a fun and friendly one.
This handicap and bonus system is not only for VGR, but for each tournament trophies would be created to award every 3 months !
For your thoughts.
From: Anders Team: Crossbar Strikers Date: 08/Mar/2008
I don't know what to say for once I'm speechless ;-)
From: Chris Team: Crossbar Strikers Date: 09/Mar/2008
That was probably the plan, shut you up for a while.
From: Terry Team: Crossbar Strikers Date: 10/Mar/2008
Impossible! . . . YOU speechless!
Are we talking about the same person Dominique?
Feel free to e-mail to me if you would like to voice your take on the above summary, or would like to obtain the original resolution pictures.