Patana Primary FOBISSEA Team “Strike” Gold in Singapore
After starting this years FOBISSEA preparations in January our 36 children have certainly been on a long journey to make this years Friendly Games which were hosted by Tanglin Trust School in Singapore. Having a very competitive group trying out certainly helped the final team as they prepared alongside a very strong cohort. The final few weeks were certainly not ideal with many events cancelled on the run up to the Games leaving the boys in particular a little under cooked in Tee Ball where they had not been able to play a single competitive fixture.
Having not previously won any of the age group Tee Ball during at least the last 6 years we entered Day One and Tee Ball with a Patana steely streak to do our best as a team and work hard for each other. As the day unfolded all of our teams grew in confidence and as group toppers, entered the semi final stages of the competition. Three tremendous performances saw all teams’ progress to their respective finals and a guaranteed medal. The fact that all three then went on to win Gold and take the clean sweep was the stuff of legend. Credit must go to all those who have attended this years’ Tee ball ECAs as the competition that you have provided certainly prepared our teams well.
As Day Two arrived for the football all of the Patana children, parents and coaches walked a little taller after the thrilling exploits of the day before but there was still much work to be done. We are very lucky to have many very strong footballers have at Patana who certainly benefit from a whole range of community based as well as school based opportunities to develop their skills and games play. Confidence remained high as the morning progressed with all 6 of our teams marching into the semi finals once again. Special mention must go to our U’9 Girls who did so with victories of 8-0, 7-0 and 3-0 with some ruthless and clinical football. From the semi finals incredibly 5 of our teams progressed to the finals with only our U’10 girls missing out after a tense golden goal and then penalty loss to the eventual winners. What happened next was certainly up there with Cinderella in the Fairy Tale stakes as all 5 finalists went on to win their respective age groups which was truly amazing. As we headed back to the hotel we could reflect on a fabulous two days of competition where we had taken 66 of the 72 gold medals on offer and 8 out 9 of the Champion Trophies.
Day Three downed and promised to be the hardest yet with Athletics scheduled for the morning followed by Swimming in the afternoon all to be topped off by the Gala Dinner and Disco in the evening. Phew!
The Athletics started brightly with the boys on the track and the girls in field before swapping as the first part of the event passed. Once again it was a rare podium without a Patana student as everyone continued to give 100% for the cause, aided by all of the training and preparation back in Bangkok. Our throwing was particularly strong but well supported by our jumps and efforts on the track. A final tally of 34 Gold, 22 Silvers and 19 Bronze Medals certainly increased the weight of our luggage as well as more than one student’s self esteem. All of our children should be rightly proud of their athletics exploits but Angelina Siddons with 4 Gold and 2 Silver, Catherine Veasy with 4 Gold and 1 Silver, and Karatae Uahwatnasakul with 4 Gold and 1 Silver performed to our great satisfaction.
Our final event of the games was the swimming where many of our games players had been coaxed into the water to support our more regular swimmers. Unfortunately the event was regularly affected by thunder and lightning so that the programme was shortened somewhat. This certainly did not dampen our teams desire to swim their best when given the opportunity. No greater example of this was Albert Smutharaks who swam the 200 IM and had the slowest seed time who swam a legendary race roared on by the Patana supporters, gaining a Bronze Medal and knocking more than 30 seconds off of his personal best. In the shortened 44 race meet, we swam many gutsy races with a final tally of 2 Gold, 1 Silver, 6 Bronze and a tantalizingly close ten 4th place finishes. At this point Rhea Poonevala deserves a mention as she achieved the very rare feat of Gold medals across all 4 disciplines at the Games.
Amazingly the children still had energy for the Disco and had certainly earned their time to socialize with their many new friends from all of the other schools. A fabulous group of students, parents and coaches helped to make this a truly memorable experience with a special thanks to all those who played their part by trying out in Term 2.
For those who may be thinking about trying out next year, we would certainly welcome you when our selection process begins in Term 2. I would recommend that anyone interested does join our football ECA in Term 1 and gets in the pool to practice their swimming now but these are by no means compulsory.
Congratulations and well done one and all!
Mr. Andrew Tatam
Head of Primary Physical Education
For more pictures click here http://www.patana.ac.th/Elementary/viewGallery.asp?hGalleryID=960