Our Under 11 Boys and Girls primary football teams claimed a remarkable double double after successfully retaining their Under 11 KL football titles once again at Alice Smith School’s Equine Park Campus on Saturday 16th March. Remarkably, it is now the fourth time in a row our Under 11 boys have won this tournament and a second time for the girls.
Garden’s Girls B team and our Boy’s B and C teams also showed plenty of class to finish third in their respective groups, narrowly missing out on places in the semi finals.
Boys A Team Report
GIS Under 11 Boys are the ISAC Football Champions for the fourth year running and again it was down to a squad performance enabling the players in the semi-final and final to have the energy to give a top performance, particularly the semi-final when they put in their best display beating Alice Smith B 2-0. However, it was a sluggish start with a just about deserved 1-0 win over Alice Smith C. More merited 1-0 wins against ELC and the German School followed but the team had certainly not hit top gear; but then Manchester United are famous for 1-0 wins and look where they are!!! At last a sign of some flair came in the form of a 3-0 win against MKIS B and by this time one of our defenders Ben had got on the score sheet with a wonderful volley, along with hard working Ikey; two players not normally associated with scoring. The no goals conceded in these first few fixtures said a lot for Jack H, Ben and Shayan at the back and Harun in goal. The attacking line up Jiang Rong and Brian on the wings, Ali in the middle backed up by the skillful Christian were not getting the goals we hoped for and then the team suffered a setback. In the final group game, Uplands went 2-0 up and despite GIS hitting the woodwork three times, their goalkeeper making great saves and our forwards misfiring shots they’d normally bury for fun, we could only get one goal back. With goal difference counting it was a nervous wait to see if they had made the semi final but the team had been warned they were not tracking back enough and could get punished so it was a good lesson, as long as they got through!!! Fortunately they made the cut, but had to play the best team from the other pool Alice Smith B.
Ikey, Justin, Giorgio and Hriday had played their part enabling the main forward/midfield players to get some well-earned rest during the early rounds and come the semi-final, a change of tactic to a more secure defence saw Giorgio play in front of the backs and what a game he had driving the play and giving Chris a free role to pass the ball around and set up front man Ali to do what he does best – score goals. All round this was GIS at their best and I’m sure the parents were proud of the way they went about this big game. Still there was a final to win against ISKL and although in control, they could not find the necessary goal for victory, so penalties it was. Watching the boys take penalties after lunch I had a good idea who looked the most confident and so Christian, Jack H and Giorgio were chosen to step up. Chris P and Jack H both put there penalties away in a very assured manner and Harun saved or put off the opposition with his confident goalkeeping style to win the competition without the need for our last penalty. A great day, brilliant tournament performance, some lessons learnt and confidence sky high to take away to our two FOIBSSEA trips next term.
Boys B and C Team Reports
GIS fielded both B and C Teams in this year’s ISAC tournament to maximise the number of children representing the school; both teams put in brilliant displays to finish 3rd out of 6 teams in their respective groups.
The B Team kicked off with a first game against Tenby and despite playing well for much of the game were undone by a break away goal. ISKL B were the next opponents and it was a magnificent hatrick from Shane who ensured an emphatic 3-0 win. A match with Alice Smith B followed and again GIS looked like the stronger side but it was the opposition who stole a 1-0 win. A deserved 1-0 win thanks to a bullet goal from Sem was enough to see off MKIS A; Sem was unlucky not to score a second when one of his shots smashed against the cross bar. BSKL were the final opponents and despite creating some great opportunities, with Nicholas pulling many of the strings from midfield, the game finished scoreless. Throughout the tournament goalkeeper Tom pulled off a string of great saves and he had a steady line of defense ahead of him in the form of Edward, Thomas and Keisuke. Yan Yu and Denis worked relentlessly in midfield whilst Jun, Brian and Imaan showed great skills with the ball at their feet. Jack K showed excellent versatility and looked comfortable playing in a number of different positions. The majority of the boys have another year in this age group and will get the chance to go even better in 2014! Well done boys!
The C Team started off against one of the tournament favourites, Alice Smith A. They chased down the opposition, battled for every ball and gave everything they had for the full duration of the game. Viktor was assured in goal and was protected well by Luke and Chris in defense; the later of whom was playing in his first ever football match. Along with Under 9 starlet Sol who also tracked back well, a 0-0 draw was an outstanding start; Little did they know, but this result largely contributed to knocking out the tournament hosts A team. Next up were ISKL A, who were eventually to make the final; in a physical game, GIS conceded early on but stayed positive and were unlucky not to force an equalizer with Daniel, Amir and Dan C all making great forward runs. A 1-0 victory against MIGS, courtesy of a goal from the dominant Chris was followed by a 2-0 win against Uplands B with Chris again getting on the score sheet along with skillful Under 9 star Doil. Sprint sensation Dante had a great tournament using his speed to chase down the opposition whilst Nixon and Yuseong showed superb passing throughout. Jack S had a magnificent tournament with his incredible work rate and although the boys undeservedly lost their last game to ISP 1-0, the team had made fantastic progress during the tournament. Well done to everyone involved!
Girls A Team Report
On a sunny Saturday morning, the Dragons U11 girls’ team began what was to be a long day of football at the ISAC football tournament with a match against MKIS. After previous fixtures against this side, they were widely considered one of the favourites at the tournament and it took a great team effort from the girls to finish the opening game with a 0-0 draw.
After that, the girls settled into their stride and began to produce some of the quality football that we knew they were capable of. It began with a 2-0 win against Alice Smith B, followed by another 2-0 win against ISKL and a 4-0 against ISP. The final match of the group resulted in a 5-0 win against Uplands School. Throughout the group stages, fine performances were on display form all the players, with goals coming from all over the pitch. Megan in particular was shooting and scoring from all ranges while Qadira also contributed with some cool finishing. Quality passes were being provided from midfield while the defense was sure and certain in their tackles and distribution. The team rotated throughout the morning and all members of the squad did their part to contribute to an excellent group stage performance.
With those results, the girls topped their group and went into a semi-final game against ELC. Against a bigger team, the girls maintained their form, defending resolutely and attacking in numbers. Late goals secured a 2-0 win and the chance to play in the final!
In the final the team met their old adversary from the group stage MKIS, who had qualified second in the group and won their own semi-final game. The girls recognized the challenge and prepared themselves in the sweltering midday heat.
In the early stages of the game, the team conceded their first goal of the tournament to go 1-0 behind. It was certainly going to be the hardest game so far as MKIS were looking hungry for the win. The girls regrouped fantastically and showed resilience and cool heads to bring the game back to 1-1 with a thunderbolt finish from Anne. With frantic cheering and shouting was coming from the sidelines, they held their nerves and continued to battle, with Megan deservedly scoring what was to be the winner after an amazing contribution to the team throughout the day.
It was backs to the wall for the last few minutes with MKIS determined to get an equalizer, but cool goalkeeping from Kristina and some more solid defending ensured that, when the final whistle sounded, Garden Dragons had come through as ISAC champions with winner’s medals all round!
With 6 wins, 1 draw, no losses and only one goal conceded over the entire tournament, it is fair to say that this was a simply amazing performance; one that all the girls involved should be proud of. Well done!!
Girls B Team Report
The Girl’s B team were faced with a daunting first fixture against KLASS A team. GIS spent much of the game bravely defending and closing down the midfield. After a great challenge by Farzana in midfield, Isabella broke clear on a counter attack and finished clinically to put GIS 1-0 ahead. The following few minutes saw KLASS pile on the pressure, and only great defending from Vicky and Kunda, and a string of brave saves from Georgina stopped the tide. Eventually something had to give, and KLASS clawed back an equalizer after a fiercely struck free kick. GIS saw out the game 1-1, a great achievement.
Next came a goalless draw against Tenby, despite Arika, Nadia, Maya and Merissa all playing well in their first outings for the Under 11s; this was followed by a defeat to a very impressive ELC team.
However, the girls showed excellent resilience in bouncing straight back from the loss to overcome ISKL in a thoroughly deserved 1-0 victory. Isabella was once again the scorer after vital midfield work from Charlotte. Meanwhile Isabel and Ashley arrived straight from music exams to provide fresh legs, and added energy and movement to the team. The team completed their fixtures with a draw against Uplands, by which time the girls had made excellent strides forward in their teamwork and support play. At the end of a long and very hot morning, GIS B finished a creditable third in the group, ahead of a number of other schools’ first teams. Great play GIS!