After 8 weeks of intense football training the team of 7 under 9 girls were ready to rock Phuket!
We were all equally as nervous and excited as each other and just wanted to get started. Our first match was against Alice Smith (Champions from last year - but that didn't worry us!) From the whistle we went out fast and hard with determination to win the ball. Alice Smith got the break and scored, by half time we were 2-0 down. We knew in the second half we needed the ball in their end of the pitch as much as possible. Early in the second half we scored with Asha passing the ball in front of goal for Bella to get our first goal of the tournament. Emmee continued to be solid in goal, not letting any ball passed her. Jasminh and Rachel were awesome and hard working in defense. With 30 seconds to go, Rachel pushed up front and ensured the ball was placed in front of goal which resulted in Bella scoring the equalizer.
Next up, we played against PIAD - Phuket International Day School, we were looking strong and were completely controlling the game when a free kick was awarded to PIAD, this resulted in Jasminh blocking their free kick but ended up with an injury, we were 1 player down. PIAD took the free kick and scored. With true grit and determination jubilant Jasminh came back on the pitch to finish the game. The game ended 1-0 to PIAD.
We knew we had a tough game next against Bangkok Patana School but we really wanted a win. Patana didn't know what to do with our mid field - Kashish, Bella and Saragh - we were making breaks, taking the ball around their defenders; much to their frustration. A lovely long ball by Super Strong Saragh, saw Awesome Asha get a touch to the ball which ended up at Brilliant Bella's feet for the legend, that is, Kicking Kashish to score! Patana pushed hard in the second half but due to Excellent Emmee's goal keeping skills they couldn't score. Emmee was jumping and diving for balls all over her goal. Patana pulled one back late in the second half. In the whole tournament we were the only school that Patana didn't beat!
That was the end of day 1 - we were exhausted but proud!
After another early start we were ready to take on the mighty BIS Phuket A team. They proved right from the whistle that they wanted to score an early goal, but due to our super duper defenders- Remarkable Rachel and Jubilant Jasminh - they struggled to get the goal. We dug deep, this was definitely the most difficult game so far. Emmee was pulling off saves left, right and centre, at one point almost touching the top bar to save a goal. Phuket managed to get the ball into our half and scored. We tried to push hard for the last 2 minutes smashing balls up to their half but just couldn't get the ball in the net. The game finished 1-0 to Phuket A team.
At this point in the day, just in time for our last game of the rounds against BIS Phuket B team, the heavens opened. The rain didn't worry us, infact it made us dance! A beautiful ball from Rachel, to Kashish then to Bella which saw Saragh making a run to the left. Saragh crossed the ball to Bella who passed it in front of goal to Asha, Asha got the ball to Bella who scored. From then on we were unstoppable. Smashing Saragh scored from the penalty spot by beautifully executing a perfect ball in to the bottom left of the goal, Kashish scored the third with Saragh sealing the win with a fourth goal. What a game! We were now in the playoffs for bronze - what an achievement!
Unfortunately the rain was becoming heavier and the pitches became too dangerous to play on. This is where our 2015 Phuket football journey stops, but our memories remain. I cannot begin to describe how proud I am of my U9 girls' Phuket football team. With not a single reserve on our team, the girls showed determination, dedication, sportsmanship, perseverance and had hearts of lions. My best girls!
Rachael Marshall / PE Teacher