Bangkok Veterans League
Season #5, Month #6
05/Jul/2009 • Harrow School

Harrow Cooks serve another narrow victory in Jul/2009 Vets League

Date: 07/Jul/2009
Vets League had another one of its successful monthly tournaments last Sunday, when it welcomed 18 different and unique teams. Flying in from all over Bangkok, there was the new team, THAIcrew United. And, we also welcomed back Nextstep Steppers after more than a year (Jun/2008) of intense work in Northern Thailand, and Japan Allstars when they got all quiet after their "first-ever" entry back in May/2008.

The familiar faces of British Club, LeCoq French (with Presidents and Senateurs), Yingcharoen Standbys, Anatolian Turks (after a couple of months of break), BUJ and JFC, Los Latinos, and the Southerners (with Crossbar and Sidepost for the 2nd month in- a-row), Harrow Cooks (as the defending champions), and the rest were all there.

This month, following the usual administrative Captains Briefing, with 18 teams, and 2 groups of 9 teams fixture (much like Sep/2007, Dec/2007, Mar/2008, Nov/2008, and just recently, Feb/2009) allowed all teams getting their total 7 games of 13 min football during the half-day.


Group Stage:
    The day started with a thick overcast, and serious threat of rain, but we still got the competition kicked off despite the humid conditions. After the first 2 rounds in the Groups Stage, the quality of the certain teams started emerging.

Anatolian Turks and Crossbar Southerners in Group-A, and Japan Allstars and Yingcharoen Standbys in Group-A were obviously the teams to reckon with.

Then there was the case of Campioni Italians and Southern Cross in Group-A, and LeCoq Senateurs, Los Latinos and Sidepost Southerners in Group-B, who were all gunning for the much revered BadCup!

The Group Stage games saw interesting matchups with a lot of goalless draws.

LeCoq Presidents 0 - 0 Harrow Cooks
Southern Cross 0 - 0 Blue Lightning
British Club 0 - 0 BU Japan
Harrow Cooks 0 - 0 Blue Lightning
BU Japan 0 - 0 THAIcrew United
LeCoq Presidents 0 - 0 Campioni Italians
Harrow Cooks 0 - 0 Red Navy
Anatolian Turks 0 - 0 Crossbar Southerners
THAIcrew United 0 - 0 Japan Allstars

In Group-A, true to themselves, Anatolian Turks breezed through the group again, with 3 wins and 1 draw. Crossbar Southerners not only held Anatolian Turks to a draw in their head-to-head game, they even ended up on the same points, only coming 2nd in Group-A due to less goals scored. The 3rd and 4th teams in Group-A, Harrow Cooks and Red Navy, were also equal on points, separated by goals scored.

Blue Lightning, LeCoq Presidents and Japan FC finished 5th, 6th and 7th of Group-A, while LeCoq Presidents missing the Cup Division by a single point. At the bottom of the Group-A table a real battle was brewing with Campioni Italians and Southern Cross in which, despite being on equal 1 point each, and both 0 ("zero" ) goals scored, Campioni pulled away on less goals conceited, confining Southern Cross — from their "first-ever" time tournament champions in Mar/2009, to the prospect of winning the Bowl Division (17th place) or the BadCup! (this month's 18th and last place).

Group-B was in a similar state of affairs. Long time absent Japan Allstars were back with vengeance, and went all the way to the top with 3 wins and 1 draw — the draw coming in their last group game against the debutantes in the Vets League, THAIcrew United. Yingcharoen Standbys had a strong squad this month, and finished the group in 2nd place. British Club continued on adding to their successes in the previous months and grabbed the 3rd place, while another long time absent team, Nextstep Steppers comfortably sneaked in the Top-4.

In Group-B's 5th and 6th spots, on equal points, came in THAIcrew United and BU Japan (ensuring to relinquish the BadCup! to another team this month ). The 7th and 8th in the group, Los Latinos and LeCoq Senateurs, were also on equal points, and duly left Sidepost Southerners to their fate as the 9th and bottom in the group, to go up against Southern Cross, as the 9th team in Group-A, for an epic battle for the Bowl Division championship (17th place) or the BadCup! winner (this month's 18th and last place).

At the break at the end of the Group Stage, as the group points were calculated on the super-duper-mainframe-computer, the rain clouds were quickly making their way in, threatening the rest of the pleasant afternoon. We still managed to add up all the points, and on all Captains agreement, got the Knockout Stage started. Luckily, in the end, the rain clouds produced only a drizzle for the rest of the afternoon, making it even more pleasant for all the Vets.

Knockout Stage:
    In the Shield Division, having narrowly missed the Cup Division, Blue Lightning weren't taking anyone hostage, and they swiftly went through their 3 games all the way to the Shield! (9th overall) trophy. Tellingly, at the other end of the spectrum, having narrowly made it in the Shield Division, Los Latinos comfortably settled at the 16th place at the bottom of the Shield Division.

In the Cup Division, an interesting situation developed, and all Group-A Quarter Finalists overcame the challenge from the Group-B teams, and slotted themselves in the Semi Finals of the tournament — albeit, Group-B Toppers, Japan Allstars, losing to Group-A 4th place, Red Navy, on the thrilling penalty-shootout.

In between the challenging games in the Shield Division and Cup Division, we had 2 teams, in a league of their own, aiming for the Bowl Division championship or the BadCup!Southern Cross and Sidepost Southerners. In a seesaw game that went all the way to the last minute, Southern Cross took home this month's Bowl! (17th overall) trophy, and after narrowly missing it last month, Sidepost Southerners deservedly walked away with the BadCup! (for last place) in the tournament.

The Cup QFs losers, battled it out in the Plate Division in which Yingcharoen Standbys showed their quality and overcame the challenge from Japan Allstars and Nextstep Steppers.

And, in the Cup Division for the Grand Final of the day, both Crossbar Southerners and Harrow Cooks gave it all their might, but couldn't score against each other in the long 13 min of the game. Crossbar Southerners Captain Martin, having wised up from his earlier observations of the Harrow Cooks, preferred not to go to extra time, and start the penalty-shootout right away.

It was a nailbiter of a penalty-shootout, shots going in-&-out and on the post left-&-right, when the Crossbar Southerners had a chance to seal it on the 3rd shot, and yet, they sailed it wide right. Another missed penalties on the 4th and 5th shots on both sides, when finally Harrow Cooks duly made their shot, and closed the day in their favour for the 2nd month in-a-row. Congratulations!


I would say, another month, another great Vets League competition, where everyone enjoyed the Chang Draft beers till the last drop (thanks Kh. Apiwat ). Thanks also to the players and their many kids, wives, girlfriends support for making the Vets League Sunday a success month-in, month-out.

Looking forward to repeating it next month on Aug/2nd.


Kind regards,
-Eralp


Website: http://www.vetsleague.com/
Community: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/vetsleague/


 
Photos:


Picture 1 — The customary beginning-of-the-day Captains Briefing photo with all the Team Captains to start the proceedings.


Picture 2 — Sidepost Southerners's Craig preparing his little boy for the Vets — ready in about 34 years time.


Picture 3 — The Italian mafia connection in Bangkok are conferring with each other over matters of grave importance.


Picture 4 — New team in the Vets, THAIcrew United, all nice-&-neat and inline.


Picture 5 — After a year of absence from the Vets, Nextstep Steppers appear very disciplined and in order.


Picture 6 — Anatolian Turks's future Vet, Ilker, establishing good relations with Formula-1 Trophy Girls.


Picture 7 — Yingcharoen Standbys had a rather strong squad this month.


Picture 8 — And, Nextstep Steppers's discipline and order is all gone once they meet the Formula-1 Trophy Girls.


Picture 9 — THAIcrew United are actively working on recruiting new staff into Thai Airlines.


Picture 10 — British Club are always smiles when the Formula-1 Trophy Girls are around.


Picture 11 — Harrow Cooks's linchpin striker, Somchai, boosting his energy levels right before the Grand Final.


Picture 12 — Anatolian Turks, with underage Ilker as the only Turk on the squad, had another close call this month, and missed the penalty-shootout against Crossbar Southerners in the SFs.


Picture 13 — Crossbar Southerners and Harrow Cooks preparing for their thrilling penalty-shootout.


Picture 14 — Crossbar Southerners: Strike 1, Goal 1.


Picture 15 — Harrow Cooks: Strike 1, Goal 1.


Picture 16 — The crowd in awe of the Grand Final penalty-shootout.


Picture 17 — So are the Crossbar Southerners, and their sister team Sidepost Southerners.


Picture 18 — Harrow Cooks and Crossbar Southerners are still friends to stop for a photo-op at the end of their exciting penalty-shootout.


Picture 19 — All the silverware (and more), raring to go!


Picture 20 — LeCoq Eric never shy for a cute frame.


Picture 21 — Eralp the Organizer trying hard to recall who won the tournament this month.


Picture 22 — Sidepost Southerners's Simon appear amused picking up the BadCup! of the day, after narrowly missing it last month.


Picture 23 — Southern Cross's Bruce graciously posing with their Bowl! (17th overall) trophy.


Picture 24 — Joe and the crew from Blue Lightning happy with their Shield! (9th overall) performance on the day.


Picture 25 — Another successful outing for Yingcharoen Standbys as the Plate! (5th overall) winners.


Picture 26 — Red Navy showcasing their Crossbar Beer Voucher as the consolation prize for 3rd place in the tournament.


Picture 27 — Martin and the cricketers from Crossbar Southerners outdone themselves this month to finish 2nd overall in the tournament.


Picture 28 — Kh. Somboon and the Harrow Cooks joyful for a repeat championship performance in the Vets.


Picture 29 — LeCoq French's Eric, Dominique and Olivier always give their best for one last one for the road.


 
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05/Jul/2009 Results
Teams                          Group Points       Final Standings   
 • Harrow Cooks 7 (3A) Champ!
 • Crossbar South. 10 (2A) 2nd
 • Red Navy 7 (4A) 3rd
 • Anatolian Turks 10 (1A) 4th
 • Yingcharoen 10 (2B) Plate!
 • Nextstep 8 (4B) 6th
 • Japan AS 12 (1B) 7th
 • British Club 9 (3B) 8th
 • Blue Lightning 6 (5A) Shield!
 • Japan FC 3 (7A) 10th
 • LeCoq(Presidents) 5 (6A) 11th
 • THAIcrew 6 (5B) 12th
 • LeCoq(Senateurs) 1 (8B) 13th
 • BU  Japan 6 (6B) 14th
 • Campioni 1 (8A) 15th
 • Los Latinos 1 (7B) 16th
 • Southern Cross 1 (9A) Bowl!
 • Sidepost South. 0 (9B) BadCup!
Note: "(3B)" means finished 3rd in Group-B.