This post is extremely long. It's about one of the most exciting days of my life. I've learnt so much today. PLEASE finish reading it and add a little tag on the right. Thanks!
The long awaited ultimatum was pronounced today. Marcus, Harish, Matt and i took the 7.06AM train to Flinders to meet up with the dudes for breakfast as Maccas. It was funny because everyone (almost everyone) already had their breakfast even though i told them that we were gonna meet u for BREAKFAST! -.-" When we got their, everyone inquired about my knee. I told them that i might not be playing, but i knew that i would NEVER be able to resist the temptation.
A massive gang consiting of Denholm, Jason, Harish, Marcus, Lil Joe, Phan, Turk, Matt, Chalky, George, Banh, Victor, Narayan, Darren, Jonno, Nick, Jamie, myself and Duc walked into Maccas. haha! Everyone just stared at us when we walked in. Turk and i were the only ones that actually "had breakfast". You won't believe what he ordered - A Sausauge and Egg Muffin + Hot Cakes! -.-" I mean, what can you expect from a Turk that weighs 70kgs? I ordered some hot cakes We had a "food race" - Turk won -.-"
We took a tram down to Fawkner Park and got there at 8.45am. We got changed and did some warm ups. Sigh... i could feel some pain in my knee during the warm up, but couldn't care less. I told Johnny that i had 10 minutes in me. It was a 4-3-3 formation: Jason as Keeper, Steven as left back, Johnny as Sweeper, Brad as Stopper, and myself as right back. That was a pretty solid defence. Turk, Chalky and Kevin formed the Midfield. Denholm, Duc and Jamie made the front line.
I did pretty well for the first 10 minutes; managed to stop a breakthrough. But my knee started acting up soon after. I told Ganella( the coach) to take me off, but we had to wait for the ball to roll outta play. Well, that never happened -.-" The opposition pumped a long ball down the right flank and this dude sprinted past me as though i was wind. Sigh...i will never forget that! -.-" That's not sportmanship. He took the ball down the flank and crossed it in. I was too focused on my knee, and i didn't see the goal. But apparently, Brad slid it and scored an own goal -.-" I was replaced by George. I took up the responsibility of being a linesman for the rest of the games. That was it. That was ALL the soccer i PLAYED today, and probably ALL the soccer i WILL play for the school this year.
Thanks to two outstanding strikes from Turk and a fantastic finish by Marcus, we made a remarkable comeback from 1-0 down to win 3-1! There were four teams in our pool - ourselves, University High, Brunswick and Princess Hill. We went into the Princess Hill game all pumped from the victory over University High. We beat them comfortably - Marcus with two senstional goals, Harish with two and Turk with one. We looked really good. Our front line was like a race team - Denholm, Duc and Jamie were sprinting their guts out, giving the defence lots to deal with. Kevin was amazingly strong in the midfield, Marcus with his usual gun-performance, Harish with his fancy, yet neat tricks, Chalky with a occasional flashes of brilliance. Steven Tran had an awesome time owning the people on the right wing. Seriously...we was kicking their bums! Johnny did what he had to do, but he really didn't have to do much with Brad in fornt of him. To my amazement, George was awesome in defence; he made crunch tackles and slid in at the right moments. Aww...last, but not least, our precious keeper Jason who has been waiting patiently from some praise. He said that he would prove his worth today, and i reckon he did. With our awesome defence, he didn't have to do much. But i must say that he had the toughest job on the field - keeping warm. lol! It was literally freezing! He also made some brilliant saves, and many brace dives to snatch the ball from the strikers; he hurt his ankle while doing so though. He's a hero behind the scenes.
Although, we were like a bull on a rampage, we were met with a brick wall in our third game. Brunswick just proved too strong for our injury-plagued team sheet. Tommy's at camp, i've got a potentially permanent knee problem, Tran's pulled his hamstring and Brad's recovering from a torn quad. Anyway, we lost 3-0 - two good shots and a dubious penalty. This dude was running inside the penalty area, threw his body at Turk, bounced off his flubby fat man boobs and landed on the ground. According to Turk, he pretended to cry! LOL! It looked convincing. The ref was deceived.
Halfway through the second half, another dude got into a tangle with George and both of them fell to the ground. He knocked his eye against George's right boot and started screaming in pain. His team mates started flooding around George, and the entire Melbourne High squad, including the tanks that were playing footy, rushed to George's aid. lol! It was hilarious. Then, a University High dude ran out from nowhere and punched George right in the face! The commotion was settled soon after by some teachers. Apparently, the uni-high dude confronted George again hours later; asking him where Melbourne High was and what time school ended. lol! He can be rest assured that if he ever set foot into the premises of our school, he will need to undergo serious surgery to remove the thousands of stanley knives.
After losing to Brunswick, we were out of the tournament. It was the ultimatum, these 5 months of constant squabbling, quarrels and arguments have come to naught. They were all in vain. If Tommy and i were playing, we would have beat them easily. But that's not the issue.We're OUT for the rest of the year and that's that. No more Soccer for the school for 2005. No History to be made. No names to be remembered. Just sweet memories of the adrenaline that once flowed through our wrinkled veins.
We carried our demoralised hearts into our last game against a deaf school. YES, a DEAF team. It didn't matter if we won or lost, but we had to keep our dignity. However, we coped a stupid goal in the first half -.-" We were playing like year 1 girls. Fortunately, Blee and Flo came along and i had a nice chat with them. Sigh...i couldn't bear watch anyway, by the way we barely won 2-1 if you're thinking of bagging us :P
Although i didn't get to play, i thank God for giving me those precious 10 minutes. I thought to myself: "Is Soccer EVERYTHING to me?" Soccer's taking up lots of my time, and it's one of my top priorities. It's truely enjoyable, but it can be like an idol. Have i gone to far? Have i neglected friends, family, or even God?
Although we lost and were almost humiliated, i learnt some lessons. I learnt that i had to be humble; to step down to the sidelines occasionally and let others have a go. I shouldn't be up there all the time, hogging the limelight and winning everyone's praise. I learnt to see things at another perspective while i was being the linesman - isn't as easy as it looks. I realised what a loving father i've got! He actually came from his nearby office to watch my sis and i play. I learnt that all the players play as a team, stand as a team and lose as a team. I was surprised that George didn't retaliate when he was punched! I learnt how to be calm during tense situations.
I was really struck at what the dudes were saying as i walked off with Blee and Flo. As well as what Jonno said to me when we went to Hungry Jacks for lunch. He called me a "player". I gave it some thought. But no, that's not what i want to be! I wanna treat girls as good friends, not just as toys or objects. I don't even wanna look at them with an ulterior motive. Sigh...am i behaving like a player without even realising it? I'm not interested in having any relationships now, i wanna be wholly devoted to my God.
You made me,
To worship thee.
You saved me,
That i may be free.
Though pain abounds,
And trouble lies.
My last breath,
Will be my final sacrifice.
Girls and Soccer,
Fame and Pride.
For you Lord,
I humbly put aside.
Be with me,
Through the ages.
That i may soar,
Through life's cruel pages.
*My life is Yours, O Lord. Take it.