Saturday Oct 1 was the herald of the long weekend where football finals abounded and excitement of a feverish pitch was being swept across the southern and eastern capital cities! Not the least of which was the fanfare emanating form the Sports Halls at Olympic Park in Homebush for the annual Freezone Spring Tournament.
The 2011 tournament was our BIGGEST EVER with 19 teams competing over three grades during the course of the day. We also had our farthest field with teams from Brisbane, Adelaide, Melbourne and Canberra. A small highlight was seeing a number of teams join forces across state lines with players from different cities combining to form teams and play together regardless of previous experience or not!
The day was long and arduous with all teams having at least 4 games to play throughout the day. Most teams actually played 5 games so it was a weary few finals towards 5:00pm that were winding up the tournament.
The A-Grade draw was perhaps one of our strongest in recent times. With 7 teams in the division, it was a hotly contested pool with The Brisbane Acers actually taking out the Bronze medal play off against Rockdale’s South United. It was wonderful to have such a high level bronze final with two teams new to Freezone’s tournaments. The Gold medal final was contested between the ever impressive EWOKS from Sydney and Freezone’s own Miss Thailand. It was a tight-knit final and the ultimate winning rally heard the Thailand celebrations resounding throughout the gymnasium. The MVP for A Grade was none other than the fabulously graceful and dextrous Fiat Malaniyam.
The B grade draw was a real mix up of teams with lots of teams making their Sydney Freezone Tournament debuts! With 2 pools of 6 teams all entering in the B Grade, it was a round robin to determine positions and then split pools into BB and C grade finals! Most teams actually won a game at some point so it was tight group of contests for BB and C!
The path to the BB bronze game was harsh as the top 6 teams across two pools were all vying for positions on the ladder. The bronze medal went to Victorious Secret from Melbourne who took out the game against Fresh Brothers. As draws go, this was probably one of the hardest finals to get to, so the Melbourne team triumphed in a hotly contested match. The Gold medal final was between Sawadee and Bend & Snap. It was great to have the Bend & Snappers making an appearance in their fabulous costumes that had a hint of Itsy Bitsy Spikers about it. It was another Thai celebration with Sawadee taking out the game in 3 sets! MVP for BB grade went to our Canberra representative Greg Legge from Bend & Snap who if nothing else, looked stunning in his very tight pink t-shirt!!!!
C Grade bronze was fought out between the always consistent ASS Whites and the new team of Black Magic formed from many ex ASS White players! Both teams were playing for the bronze but also to avoid the wooden spoon but it was Black Magic who triumphed. The C grade final has the reputation of pushing it to the very end of the days allotted time space. Wishing upon wish to avoid the GOLDEN POINT RULE being incurred at 5:02pm, the SS Pandas and the QF Rockets were trading points and serves for 3 solid sets. At the very end of the 3rd set a 5 member Pandas managed to hold on in the end and take the Gold. MVP went to Peter Furness, probably for screaming the loudest on court!
The days success was obvious from the tired and happy faces at the presentation ceremony at Bar Cleveland. With Freezone’s aim of giving everyone as much game play as possible, the tired and sore bodies limping back to the inner city were testament to a great tournament of play and passion.
The success of the tournament in being our largest ever goes directly to the Freezone committee who rallied together from early on to get advertising, bookings and co-ordination happening. These events don’t happen without support and to all those who contributed with time and effort in securing a smooth running operation and prizes and medals, a big thank you.
Big thanks also to our sponsors list for this tournament, which seemed to grow ever larger the closer we got to the date. Our Premier Sponsors ACON and SSO are always appreciated along with team sponsors MECCA COFFEE. It was a pleasure to welcome to the Freezone Flag The Midnight Shift, City Gym and BANG Clothing who each donated prizes for our raffle, which saw a total prize pool in excess of $2,000! Freezone is a not-for-profit organization and this sort of support from our business community is greatly appreciated.
This is the busy time for tournaments with Good Neighbour in Canberra and Adelaide Spikers Parri Estate in November. So we hope that all shall ride the coat-tails of this successful and fun filled day and we will see you on the circuit in the next few months!