Moir Regains International Schools Football Trophy

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Congratulations to the Under 19 Football Team who won this year’s Inter International Schools Football Tournament, regaining the trophy they won two years ago and avenging their defeat in last year’s final. It was the third year in a row that our team had faced tournament hosts Royal Institute in the final. All three finals have followed exactly the same pattern: each year we have taken the lead, only for the opposition to equalise and take the game to a penalty shoot-out. When the time comes to defend the trophy next year, our team will not have lost a game in the tournament for five years, as our two defeats in this time have both come on penalties.

As has been the case for the past few years, out team qualified top of their group after scoring a hatful of goals. Even by these standards, sixteen goals in two games were spectacular, with Naveed Zahir scoring a hat-trick in the opening game and Aron Rahim four in the second. A close semi-final was won by a penalty scored by Anan Weerasinghe, showing remarkable composure for one of the youngest members of the team. In the final, Jang Pyo Hong scored for the third consecutive year before the memorable penalty victory meant the celebrations could begin.

This year’s victory is particularly impressive given that several key players had left from last year’s team. The nucleus of the side was a group of Upper 6th students who have been mainstays of the team for several years. Captain Jang Pyo Hong led by example, as he has throughout his time in the team, both in training and on the pitch. For Aron Rahim, this was his seventh tournament, having played in the team even when he was in Form 1. Shahid Fazlee was given the award for the Best Goalkeeper in the tournament, while Naveed Zahir added skill, pace and tenacity to the attack, and Jin Woo Park was one of the most improved players in this year’s team. Equally important was the contribution of the younger players, who stepped into the team and showed that there is a bright future for Football in the school. Coach Mr. van Twest reported glowingly on the commitment and determination of a group of players from Form 4, some of whom made the starting team and some whose moment will come next year.

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