It was the 19th of October, a Saturday and it was 8am. That’s right, you heard us. 8am MOTHAF*****. Why were we in Monash at 8 am, you might ask? Well, the Monash Sports Carnival was being held that very day, and the prospect of a gorilla mascot was too exciting to resist. Registration placed participants into 4 different houses; Blue, Red, Green and Yellow. (Please note, the last two were neon. Fashion forward.) Points were added up with every event win and the house with the most points at the end of the day would emerge overall winners, ala Harry Potter.
Though the participant list was promising at around 160 people, as of 9am, only a third had registered. That being said, once the games started, the numbers didn’t matter. We had a first look at the pool tournament, which blew our minds. The dexterity on display was impressive. Moves were calculated and there was no display of hesitation. We quickly learnt that if the black ball was pocketed, it would evoke an emotional response from not only the players, but also the crowd (mostly consisting of expletives).
A particularly impressive game was played by the only two girls competing in the pool doubles. These girls moved with grace and calculated precision, and aced almost every shot. Even though they did not win in the end, they captured the room’s attention and managed to hold it for the longest time. The singles were won by Rafi, while Keshav was runner- up. The doubles were won by Preenal and Piyush, with Ahmed and Chamika coming in a close second.
We found foosball a particularly odd game. This was a virtual football match (never mind that we had a futsal game going on as well), and the intensity in every game was completely unexpected. It was a battle of the sexes, with an even turnout of both genders. The eventual winner, Whitney, started off fairly nervous but held her nerves and defeated her boyfriend to claim the throne as Foosball Queen. Kudos to Whitney! At the same time as the pool and foosball tournaments were going on in the MUSA Lounge, the table tennis tourney was underway. It was quite hard to keep tabs on the progress of the games, as we were inclined to be assaulted by an onslaught of balls every time we attempted to enter the room. We had to be content with watching the match through the windows instead. The singles crown was taken by Kien Yoong, while the doubles were taken by Satish and Sajeewa.
Basketball, out in the hot sun, was a 5 on 5 team for the guys, while 3 on 3 team for the ladies. We were amazed by the strategic teamwork and stamina put in by the players. Even when the opposing teams seemed to be leading, the players kept their morale high to come back with a vengeance. The key lesson we could take home from the basketball tourney was trust your team mates. Period.
The girls’ games were particularly interesting; they only took a half-court and although they looked less powerful, they clawed their way through the competition –literally. Hint hint: You know who you are. Girls are infinitely more agile as well and it was a wonderful sight to see. Basketball was won by these teams; in male: 1) Red, 2) Blue and 3) Yellow, whereas for the ladies, it was 1) Green, 2) Yellow and 3) Blue.
Badminton was held off campus- at the nearby South Quay Extreme Park. Shuttle buses were provided at 3 different times for the players’ convenience. After one of our members’ initial confusion
(Ai Lin/Photographer: ‘Are you sure, this is not a butterfly park?’), we stepped through the doors to find an intense battle going on. Badminton was truly a match of speed and coordination and the shuttlecocks were moving much too fast for the photographers to capture. It was particularly awe-inspiring when a player ‘smashes’ the shuttlecock, but the opponent goes against all odds and manages to run and return the shot. It ended surprisingly early, with the winners, Jacob; Samuel and Dao Hong; and Jason and Xiao Bee, taking the singles, doubles and mixed doubles, respectively.
The start of the futsal tournament was pushed back to 11.30am, as some of the players were recipients at the Scholarships and Awards Ceremony concurrently being held (Ooh lala brains and brawn). When it did start however, it began quite aggressively. It was a typical futsal tournament with high levels of testosterone, but one thing stood out. The competing teams consisted of really odd names. Here, we give you the winner’s list. In first place, team ‘Why ah?’, the second, the Bengals (which people confused as Bangles, making people question their motivation) and the final team,
the 69ers. We’ll leave it at that.
The final event of the day and its TUG-o-WAR, rain, mud and broken rope. Yep, that’s right. Broken rope. One tug and it came apart. That was the intensity of the muscular prowess of the red team, leaving the yellow floundering in the mud.
There was an air of anticipation at the end of the day’s activities, as everyone waited expectantly to find out who won the overall championship. By this time, it was already 5.30pm and much of the crowd has dissipated (the approach of week 12, ‘nuff said). First up, Ayman, the head of the organizing committee, thanked everyone for the hard work put in, congratulated all the winners and apologized for the rain putting a damper on the day’s events. Then, it was on to the eagerly awaited awards ceremony. The house cup went to Team Gryffind- we mean Red at 200 points (no last minute Dumbledore points here). So at 6.30 we took off our Press tags, only to find that our said confused photographer has misplaced her car keys. Here’s a shoutout to the person who found them; thank you for your honesty! Four for you, Glenn Coco. You go, Glenn Coco! We celebrated the end of a long day’s work with sushi, green tea and excessive chilli flakes. We look forward to next year’s and congratulations to all the participants, winners and the organizing team for a job well done.