Our U9 and U11 football squads were in action at the annual Phuket Football Tournament in Thailand. With 92 teams, 26 schools and 1,166 competitors from across Asia, it was a huge and prestigious event.
All of our teams played extremely well and the skill and team play demonstrated by KLASS was fantastic. We are very proud of all of our budding footballers. Two days of intense football would test the best and the behaviour and motivation shown throughout was fabulous. You were all true ambassadors of the school and we are very proud of you. To our parents and supporters, thank you for your encouragement and support, it was lovely to see so many of you there. I would also like to send a special thank you to Mr Grimshaw, Mr Atkinson, Mrs Farag and Mr Thorpe for their time, commitment and coaching skills in the run up to and during the tournament...and finally, who could forget Mr Grimshaw's birthday, we hope you enjoyed your special day and liked your cake. We all certainly did!
U9 Girls coached by Mrs Farag
Breaking news: The U9 Girls team won SILVER in their first ever tournament!
The BISP Tournament got off to a flying start with the U9 girls winning 3-0 against Shrewsbury, Bangkok with goals from Sophie and Thasya. As this was their first ever game, it was a magnificent achievement by the girls who played with tenacity and flair. However, a restructuring of the team had to happen as Robin, our usual midfielder who was recovering from a nasty infection found the pace too much for her beleaguered lungs. We quickly changed players around but it took the first half of the next match for the team to adjust and Patana took advantage by scoring a goal against us in the first half of our second match. However, the team rallied and were much more settled in the second half. The game finished 0-1 to Patana but spirits remained high amongst the team. Our last match of the day was against Harrow, Bangkok. We knew they were a strong team but the girls were determined and we finished with winning by one goal.
The second day of the tournament started with the semi-final and a rematch against Harrow. The girls put in a tough, gritty performance but with a final score of 1-1 with an equalizing goal from Emily, it went to extra time. A spectacular goal from Thasya in a free kick got us through to the final. With the crowd cheering, the team started well and spent a lot of time in attack. However, scoring was made difficult by a strong Patana defence. An excellent goal from a free kick saw Patana up by 1 at half time but the girls’ spirits remained high. The crowd went wild when Thasya scored another incredible goal but unfortunately, Patana came back with another unstoppable strike. Kamila, the goal keeper threw herself at every ball that got past the battling defence and midfield and forwards desperately worked to try to score. However, the game ended 1-2 to Patana but the supporters of both teams thoroughly enjoyed the enthralling match.
KLASS U9 Girls squad: Kamila, Robin, Josephine, Martha, Scarlet, Jessica, Thasya, Georgina, Emily, and Sophie.
U9 Boys coached by Mr Thorpe
The Under 9s played out of their skin for the entire Phuket tournament. After a hard fought 4-2 win in their opening game, their excellent team work paid off through all the following matches to come second in their group. A loss in the play off for a place in the final meant that they had to play for third and fourth place against Patana. The game was immense! 1-0, then 1-1, 2-1 then 2-2, extra time and a fantastic goal, constructed by Ben ’the Beast’ Monaghan and finished by Adam ‘the Giant’ Gordon. In a last ditch attempt to rescue the game, their number 22 went one on one with Mathew ‘de Gea’ White, who came out, closed him down and foiled his shot! The whistle blew and they were placed in bronze position! Special mention to Pete ‘Stuart Pearce’ English – my player of the tournament. Beware strikers he’ll have your legs!
U11 Girls coached by Mr Grimshaw
A beautiful country, a beautiful day, playing the beautiful game. Having recently won the Penang U11 tournament, our girls went into this competition prepared and confident. The standard was good, and whilst our girls proved to be a strong little unit, they just could not find a goal! Our opening two games saw defeat as a combination of poor control and unlucky bounces gifted our opponents the goals. By our third game, the stability was there and we finished the day unbeaten. Day 2 and the girls started again brimming with confidence. Having received a stern team talk, we started to use the wings to better effect, the crosses were flying in thick and fast, and goal scoring opportunities appeared. With a thumping 3-0 win over BIS Phuket, and an unlucky loss to Tanglin, we played and won our last game of the tournament with a 1-0 over Shrewsbury. So a great experience for these ladies, and we look forward to seeing more of them during the football season next term. Also, a big thank you to all the girls' parents who were very vocal and supportive throughout the tournament - much appreciated!
KLASS U11 Girls squad: Riya Chaure, Katie Tasker, Ella Ross, Aislinn Neville, Lauren Purchase, Erin Eu, Sadie Gordon, Georgina Cox, Siobhain Doyle, and Erin McNeice.
U11 Boys coached by Mr Atkinson
The boys who represented the U11 Lions team in Phuket can hold their heads high in the KLASS community as they unveiled the exciting state of Alice Smith football. Over the two days, they were the standout team, exhibiting stunning flowing football built around a clinical passing game, hard work, physicality and a mature technical ability for ones so young. Backed by our adoring parental fans, the boys continued to pull in spectators from all parts as I overheard many conversations, from rival coaches to secondary age students, waxing lyrical about our lads. Throughout the competition each boy stood up to be counted and these individual moments combined to make a great overall team performance. Felix displayed his customary calm command of the defence; Maxime read the game like an magical psychic; Johnny Hay embodies the young spirit of Mesut Özil; Kofi Thorpe was tireless as he continues to use footballing mastermind to run the game; Sam Wake was a dominant force across every blade of grass as he powered the boys forward; Jayden Ramsay as always showed his versatility in his positional play and wreaked havoc down the flanks; Kieran Sargeant was inspirational as he gave everything on the pitch undoubtedly our MVP for two straight days; Kasper was a revelation up front coupling explosive pace with instinctive finishing; Marnix was Rooney-esque in his tenacious and mature link up with the midfield as he slotted home goal after goal from all angles; finally, Johnny English our unflappable goalkeeper provided the highlight of the tournament, as his team put us into a clear winning position Johnny was bored at the back untested by the opposition. That was until a surprise substitution brought him upfront as a striker, allowing him to show his diversity and wide ranging ability, supported by his teammates he struck a stunning finish to become the only goalkeeper in the tournament to score a goal in open play!
I am truly proud of each of these boys as they embodied the ethos of teamwork and friendship throughout.
Check out more photos from the weekend here.
Head of Sport and Extra Curricular Activities Coordinator