|The History making 2011 Under 15s State team|
Today was the grand final day.
Everyone had to be at the hall at 1030 am to get ready for the proceedings.
The hall was set up with just the main court and chairs around the court for the spectators.
After getting coffee for the organisers, I set up my viewing point at the upper floor galley to get a good view.
Yes, I have been making a coffee run for the organisers who are all great volunteers and who do not ask for much. So, I try to grab a few coffees when I reach the court and let them fight it out as to who gets what. Hey, I only have 1 pair of hands and can only carry so many coffees.
We are thankful for what the organisers do for the competition. They organise the hall, ready for the games even before any one arrives. Everything works like clock work and Badminton WA should be proud of how they managed this competition.
The order of event is for the plate events to be played. The girls plate was won by Janet Son, a dimunitive little girl from NSW.
The main event then took place which was a final between Grace from Queensland and Joy Lai. Grace is seeded 2 and Joy seeded 1. The results spoke for themselves with Joy beating Grace in 3 sets at 14-21 21-11 and 21-18. It was a close fight. Grace played admirably but could not finish off the game although she won the first set.
|The girls singles winners|
The next game was the plate between WA's Dennis Zhao and Justin Lee from NSW. This was again a 3 setter with the first set at 23-21 to Dennis. The score does not show that Dennis came back from behind to win. The 2nd set was won by Justin at 16-21. Coach Paul asked Dennis if he felt tired at the break. For the first time, Dennis said "No". You could see the determination in his eyes. He proceeded to finish the game 21-12 as Justin had lost all his energy. Dennis has improved so much as a player. And I am told his studies are also great. He has great prospects both as a player and as a student.
The next game was the main game between Austin Yu seeded 1 and WA's Amos Yi seeded 2. Amos had lost to Austin in 2 sets for the team event. His parents were keeping their hopes high that Amos could turn that around for the individual event. The game started well and Amos got ahead before both boys suddenly found themselves in a deuce position. The lead changed a few times and Amos' dad and mum had their hearts skip a few times too. Austin finally finished the game at 25-23. It was so close and Amos had a couple of match points but could not convert.
Well, it was up to Amos to see if he could equalise on the 2nd set. He started well but then again found himself trailing at the 11 point break. He caught up a few times but could not close the gap before losing at 21-19. That was the end of the campaign for Amos with a silver medal for his efforts. I am sure he wanted a gold and he will have to work harder the next time to get it. His parents know that he tried everything but this time, it was not his year. Even his sister was at the stand and you could see her heartbreak for her brother's loss.
|The Boy's singles winners|
The next plate event was the girl's doubles plate. Hera Jim and Lily Rigg beat Siobhan Dang and Mandy Li in 3 sets in another close fight.
The next event was the girl's double between WA's Eunice Lee and Phing Teo seeded 2 against Joy Lai and Grace Ngiam seeded 1. The no. 1 seeds were too strong and they won WA 21-19 and 21-10. This is Eunice's and Phing's first individual silver. Who knows, the next one may be gold. However, there is lots of hard work ahead. Are they ready for it?
|Girls doubles winners|
The boy's doubles plate was between Sagar Kumar and Ewaldo v Benjamin Han and Mark Moriaty. Sagar and Ewaldo were too strong finishing the match in 2 sets.
The main boy's double was between Matthew Chan and Austin Yu v Eddie Luk and Andre Zopf. Matthew Chan and Austin won the first after a close fight at 23-21 and the 2nd at 21-16.
|Boys doubles winners|
The mixed double's plate event was between Eric Qi and Adriana Phan against John Taing and Tylah Bruhn. Eric and Adriana won in 2 straight sets.
The final game was the mixed doubles between Andre Zopf and Joy Lai the no. 1 seed. Julian Lam and Grace Ngiam the 2nd seeds were the opponent. Remembering my son Tyz and Sanoja had just lost to the 1st seed in 3 sets the day before, I wondered what the standard of the finals would be. It proved an exciting 3 setter which dinged donged between the 2 opponents so many times I am glad they are not my children. Andre Zopf and Joy Lai finally won the 3rd set at 21-19 although they lost the 1st set.
|Mixed doubles winners|
The winners are listed below and I was pleased to see Tyz and Sanoja had been recorded as 3/4 winners despite not having played together before this competition.
|Kingsway - C 5|
|1.||Starting at 11:00 AM||GS - GS U15|
|2.||Followed by||GS - GS U15|
|3.||Followed by||BS - BS U15|
|4.||Followed by||BS - BS U15|
|5.||Followed by||GD - GD U15|
|6.||Followed by||GD - GD U15|
|7.||Followed by||BD - BD U15|
|8.||Followed by||BD - BD U15|
|9.||Followed by||XD - XD U15|
|10.||Followed by||XD - XD U15|
That was the end of the matches. The floor was then taken by the MC.
One of our keenest and most qualified umpire Greg Vellacourt (a fellow lawyer) was honoured for his work as a referee. He well deserves the recognition and was in fact my tutor when I did the umpire course myself with my wife.
|Greg receiving his honour certificate|
At the end of the carnival, the players ranking for the tournament was announced. Amos from WA was ranked 2nd after Austin Yu. Edward Fan of WA was ranked 6 even though he is a regional player. He did well in the individual event by beating one of the seeded players.
Phing was ranked 3rd and Eunice was ranked 5th.
This has been a good year for WA. Again we have to thank all the coaches who have assisted the players.
The team has made history by winning a bronze medal. There has been 2 silver medals won by the team with Dennis winning the plate. It bodes well for the future of WA badminton.
After the competition, the kids are allowed to let down their hair. This year, a night out at the Warwick Bowling alley was organised. The children had some light snacks before having their bowling games. You can feel the teenage hormones with the girls screaming and running all over the place and the boys playing it cool.
The parents are also able to socialise for once without worrying about training, feeding the kids etc. At the end, the players have a hard time saying good bye to their new found friends. Some tears are shed. Facebooks will be updated.
|The players relaxing at Warwick Bowling alley|
|WA team with some missing players and some additional ones|
|The parents chatting|
|Saying good bye|
So that is the end of another Under 15s competition. 6 days of intensive badminton with the players giving their best. Parent's feeling every feeling under the sun and moon.
If you ask the kids if they will do it again next year. They all shout "YES".
They do not have to worry about their parents having to continue ferrying them to and from training. They do not think about the hard work preparing the logistics for taking part including food, accommodation, transport etc (including dealing with some parents that are less than agreeable).
I am not even mentioning the coaching fees.
If you ask the parents if they would support their children if they want to take part again next year, I bet the answer will also be "YES". All because we love our children and we want them to achieve as much as they can in their life.
Sports at a competitive level, even if it is just at a National level is a commitment. I can imagine if some of these kids are picked to play for Australia. A few of them have and the commitment is even higher. One of WA's top player used to have to fly every weekend to the Eastern States to train. To balance life, studies and their sports is an amazing feat which will well help them when they are adults.
The friendships they have forged with their fellow players will always be treasured.
I was most touched when I was speaking to Mark Duxbury, the organiser and chair for this competition. We were looking at the digital photos taken by the professional photographer. Amos was looking to see what photos they had of him and there were quite a few good shots. Mark said to Amos that he should buy the photos as they would comprise of some of his best memories when he gets older. I did not expect such sentimentality from Mark, who at the best of times always appears gruff and upset at the players. :) Just joking Mark.
Any way I do agree with Mark. These are going to make up the best memories of the players' youth. So to all you players, do enjoy yourself reading this blog when you are older.
As for me, I think I may now have to start an Under 17s Blog page as that seems to be where my boys are heading next. Good night for the year.
Comments from a friend
What a nerve wrecking day it must have really been! I can literally feel the adrenalin rushing from the players and especially you parents under such intense pressure and high dramas!!
I am completely overwhelmed by such display of determination and fighting spirits from these young players and the vociferous display of support from you parents and well-wishers urging them on. Wish I was there to witness this event.
For those kids who did not manage to advance further in the tournament, they can be very proud of themselves for having fought so gallantly. And for those who are still in the running, I wish them all the best!!
Sorry have not been able to read email till Wednesday cos After Saturday, I literally slept till 11am from mon to wednesday! Mentally tired and nerve breaking for the five days of tournament! Amos also slept till 1pm everyday! He is also mentally n physically tired!
Indeed our kids have done well and made us proud this time in the under 15 championship! I saw the great changes n improvement in all the eight kids in terms of courage, self-confidence, manners n fighting spirit.
When Olivia told me she is going to play against Joy Lai the next day, I told her:"so what if she is Joy Lai, you go in and take 15 points from her ok?" she smiled shyly n nodded her head. Though she lost in 2 sets, she managed to get 15 points from Joy on the second set, point by point with much courage n determination! I saw the satisfaction in her eyes after the game. Indeed money can't buy this kind of experience!
Silvi was incredibly good with guarding her front like a hawk! She served n played so well that even she was surprise at herself at the end of every matches!
Xiang played courageously like a tiger though he was small n was constantly under attacked by the opponents. He told his mom that this tournament was very fun n he wishes to join in the next one!
Dennis was a quiet achiever n he surprised everyone with his determination in winning to the top of the plate, which was not easy. He indeed has gone up to another level!
Phing n Eunice did really well in doubles too though the opponents were much stronger. Given the fact that phing still did not fully recovered from her injury, she did really well in getting ranked third! Eunice too fought very hard to get ranked 6th! Eunice also grew in strength and perseverance!
I must say Tyzton should be crowned mixed double "Pro" from this tournament! He and his partner(1st time playing together) could have such breathtaking performance without Practicing I cannot imagine what they could do if they did! He played really well this time, it was a bliss just to watch him play!
Amos though lost in his individual event to Austin Yu, he commented that his biggest disappointment was not losing to him but it was the fact that he can't get an I-pad from us as a prize! Poor boy! I must say that he has fought hard in the team events playing mostly rubber sets in doubles n mixed doubles n later in his individual events too. He told me just now that he was very tired on last Wednesday already playing three events everyday mostly rubber sets. He did not tell me last week but even if he tells me this, I did not think I can help him either. I think most importantly, he has grown much in strength, perseverance and maturity through this tournament and we are very happy for him!
Thanks Raymond for the wonderful
Job of blogging! I enjoyed reading it. It was like instant re-play in my head! After reading the last day's blog, tears of joy n relieved came and I slept so well that I could only get up almost noon time! Then piles of housework awaited me! Like what hong Mei said:"this whole week's housework already piled up so high!"
|Touk Reei (Amos's mum)|
Hello all Parents,
It has been a very busy, exciting and at times, heart stopping week for all of us over the Val Nesbitt and Under 15 carnival.
We should be proud that the team has ended up with the bronze medal for the Val Nesbitt Carnival, which is the best result that WA has achieved since this carnival started 7 years ago. It is great that we have also won the silver medals for the National Boys singles and the Girls doubles events, as well as the plate championship for the Boys singles event. While WA juniors had won plate events in previous National U15 Championships, the silver medals in the main draw was also a first for WA. All of the juniors in the team has put in a great effort and have done WA proud with their achievements.
I would like to thank all the parents for their support and team work over the carnival with transporting the kids, cheering for the team, helping each other and myself with all that we have to do over the past week.
A big "Thank you" to our State Team Coach, Ai Ling, for preparing, coaching, encouraging and working out the strategies over the carnival.