After some intense work by its athletic department Berkeley International School hosted its first inter-school futsal tournament on the 9th of November 2013. The 4 teams that were included in the competition were British Columbia, Garden, New Sathorn and Berkeley. The competition is scheduled to be an annual event where the ‘Friendship cup’ will be contested by the middle school futsal teams.
After some rain earlier in the week, the grass pitch was perfect for the games, soft, fine and a lovely shade of green. Berkeley ground staff had the area nicely mowed and all team areas were provided with a shady tent and cold water. As the time rolled round to the first kick off, it was a cool and fresh morning with a temperature of 26 degrees. Perfect playing conditions.
The teams prepare for their first game.
Game 1 kicked off sharply at 8:15 am with the boys, and featured New Sathorn under 12’s vs Berkeley under 12’s. Having only had a month or so of practice and going up against a New Sathorn team with an already established sports program it was going to take more than a couple of good individual performances from Berkeley players to win the day. New Sathorn looked well organized from the opening whistle and took an early lead with a fine combination of passes. Berkeley were constantly caught out in defense, lacking good solid positional sense to stop the attacks and the score at halftime was a well deserved 5-0 lead to New Sathorn.
Never ones to give in, Berkeley came back strong in the opening minutes of the second half, but they were once again plagued by their defensive errors and the game finished up with Berkeley losing the opener 8-0.
Coach Mike and Lloyd prep the u12s before their first game.
Game 2 at 8:45 was another boy’s game with British Columbia under 12’s vs Garden under 12’s. These two teams both showed a lot of flair and passion and the game was an end to end spectacle of running and passing. British Columbia opened the scoring with a fantastic volley from 5 meters out. Garden never dropped their heads and came back strongly with renewed confidence and managed to level the scores 1-1 at the half. The second half was more of the same, but as the minutes ticked by fitness levels started to show and the heat played its part. Garden sneaked in 3 late goals and was 4-1 up only a couple of minutes before the final whistle. A final goal was scored just before the end, and the game finished up at 5-1 to Garden.
Game 3 at 9:15 saw the girls in action, with the Berkeley under 12’s vs the British Columbia under 12’s. Both the girls’ teams looked solid and evenly matched. For the first few minutes of the game it was played very competitively going from end to end. As the first half progressed the Berkeley midfield began to find its touch and delivered a string of perfectly weighted passes onto it strikers catching the British Columbia square on the back line. The Berkeley forwards were hot on the finishing and continued to split the British Columbia defense. Berkeley was 3-0 ahead at the break.
British Columbia were very spirited and put up a great match, but they had trouble getting the ball out of defense and the Berkeley girls started to find a smooth rhythm; letting the ball do the work. British Columbia never gave up, and it was also their first inter school tournament, so there was a lot to play for. After some intense pressure and lethal finishing the final score was 7-0 to Berkeley. The crowd really played a great part in this game with loud cheers going up every time either team came near to the goal.
The girls celebrate after a spectacular goal.
Game 4 at 9:45 was the runner up game for the boys under 12’s. Berkeley took on British Columbia. This was the closest match of the whole competition as both teams attacked and ran hard onto the ball. Berkeley scored first, but British Columbia only gave them minutes to enjoy their lead as they equalized shortly after. The score was 1-1 at the half. The second half was open to either team to win, with some great goalkeeping stopping both teams from getting that vital second goal. Finally, after a string of four near misses something had to give and Berkeley snuck in the winner in the last minute to snatch 3rd spot and won the game 2-1
The winning shot on goal in the u12s final game.
Game 5 at 10:15 was the under 12’s final between New Sathorn vs Garden. This game started very brightly with a very high level of competition. Garden went close twice and New Sathorn hit the post but neither team could score. Garden were blessed with a couple of excellent individual performances but New Sathorn’s close knit defense and their quickness on the break caught out Garden twice both ends of the half and they went on to win 2-0 and take the title.
Game 6 was the ‘Friendship Cup’ game with a very nice trophy on offer for the winners. This game featured Berkeley middle school vs New Sathorn middle school. Both teams had put in some decent practice sessions up to the game and there was certainly a lot to play for. Berkeley were still reeling from losing their team captain in the midweek to a stomach bug and having to start the game a sub down. New Sathorn came out to win and two short passes later with a crunching deflected shot saw them take the lead in the opening seconds. Conceding this early goal clearly rattled Berkeley and it was another 10 minutes before they started to get some decent play together. New Sathorn were taking every opportunity they could and jumped all over any Berkeley mistake with vigor. A long range goal and a couple of short nifty passes in the box saw them take a 4-0 lead into the halftime break.
Berkeley came back fighting after the break and the oranges must have helped as they scored a quick goal and started to threaten the New Sathorn keeper from every angle. There was hope yet the cup could be saved. New Sathorn soaked up the pressure well, remained composed and came back to punish Berkeley a little later in the half with a combination of tight passing and long range shots. Berkeley tried its best but the team started to crack and New Sathorn slipped in four more quick goals to win the game 8-1 at the final whistle.
Our wing streaks down the pitch.
After the game all of the teams gathered for the medal ceremony. Medals were given to the first, second and third placed teams. New Sathorn proudly raised the Friendship cup to a roaring cheer of support and the best team won on the day. We are all now looking forward to the re-match.
New Sathorn now have possession of the Friendship cup until the next meeting sometime in 2014. The day as a whole was a spectacle of sportsmanship, fair play and fun. Over 200 people attended the morning session and the crowd was a spectacle for all to see and hear, and which helped to bring out the best in all players. Berkeley’s PTO laid on a great spread of snacks, hot and cold drinks.
The teams line up for the awards ceremony.
We would like to thank all the schools who took part in this event to make it such a great success. Berkeley hopes to run a series of tournaments over the next 6 months with a host of other international school involved to make school life better and more exhilarating for every student taking part.
If you have read this article and seen the photos and would like to get involved in any tournaments coming up, please feel free to contact our head of athletics Mr. Michael Strunk for more information at this address email@example.com.
We are Berkeley!