The 2012 Spring Tournament on 22nd September at the Sports Halls, Olympic Park broke all records for a locally hosted Freezone Tournament. Asides from the Gay Games in 2002, this was Freezone’s largest ever tournament undertaken with 29 teams registered and over 200 participants. Medals were awarded across 5 divisions including an A and B Grade Mixed division where 2 female players were required on court at all times.
Homebush was alive with teams from all over Sydney, Adelaide, Melbourne and Brisbane. Many teams were first time competitors in a Freezone tournament and it was wonderful to have representatives from other established clubs from the volleyball community participating. The level of play was certainly high with an edge of new people and players and no-one was assured of easy paths to the finals. With so many teams and not enough hours to complete full rotations of play, the round robin nature of the games meant every point was important. The final games were all a matter of who was left standing at the end of almost 10 hours of volleyball.
The tournament was a success in many ways , not least that 51 female players took part in the tournament. Freezone set out to support SVNSW’s push for more female players in tournaments this year and we are proud to have facilitated this aspect of increasing the sport to our ‘sisters’ and getting more girls on the volleyball court. Asides from this, the ‘mixed’ nature of the tournament brought about some great cohesion and elements of ‘fun’ on the court. We are so glad that there were so many mixed teams entered with certain individuals even playing mixed teams in the mens division.
The Freezone committee is indebted to the generosity and time invested by our wonderful team of Volunteers. A huge thank you and debt of gratitude goes to Michael Pitt, whose experience and understanding was invaluable in overseeing the Tournament Directors position and who managed to make the day run as smoothly as possible and deal with issues calmly and concisely on the day. To Miranda Mao who was Tournament Assistant and ensured the draws were all calculated on time and correctly a very big communal hug. With multiple cross overs and points for 5 divisions needing to be tallied to progress finals, Miranda was our Spreadsheet Queen and we are most grateful for her input and clarity in helping us with all entries. Big hugs and thanks to John Dixon who kept us all well fed with fruit and co-ordinated all the catering for the lunch, we are SO grateful. We even had a combination of past treasurers turning up to help out on the day, filling old posts as officials. Billy Kennedy and Amit Lie, we thank you and appreciate your continued support of the club.
There were some small comments and criticisms on the day, the most insistent from the staff at the Sports Halls who were most dissapointed at the lack of ‘costumes’ on the court. It was explained that Freezone’s Mardi Gras tournament is more the avenue for glitter and glitz! We would like to thank those who took part in the ‘fun’ nature of the day particularly ‘Big in Japan’ and our very own ‘ASS Whites’ who did take out the costume prize for the day. A special award was handed to our own Social Co-Ordinator, Ethan Carter for his “Wonder Woman” ensemble – one of the best costumes Freezone has seen in many years.
With teams competing from many different clubs, the tournament was a huge undertaking and there was a lot of input from many individuals from within the club. These sorts of events are always difficult and they don’t happen without the volunteering from club members and those from the wider community.
This tournament was a ‘first’ for Freezone in many ways and we are looking to improve and tweak elements of the tournament to make it even better in the future. We would like to thank ALL those who participated and particularly those from first time clubs participating in a Freezone event. We look forward to building on this experience and creating even better events in the future.
A Grade (Mens)
Gold: EWOKS Silver: MISS THAILAND Bronze: ITEAM
MVP: Andre Nunes (iTeam)
A Grade (Mixed)
Gold: BI-SONS Silver: OPPAI Bronze: SMOOSH BANG
MVP: Noriko Nakan (Oppai)
B Grade (Mens)
Gold: KINNAREE Silver: SAOW-E-SARN Bronze: ARSENAL
MVP: Greg Legge (Arsenal)
B Grade (Mixed)
Gold: NTH RYDE PANDAS Silver: MANLY Bronze: ZEPHYRS
MVP: Lauren Fallat (Freespirit)
Gold: SMACK TEAM Silver: NAUGHTY PANDAS Bronze: BALL SO HARD
MVP: Rudy Harianto (Smack Team)