Football Straits 2023

Last weekend brought with it one of the most anticipated events in the MCM Sports calendar -The Football Straits. The seven-a-side football tournament was back with even more matches and more chances to bond over a fantastic game of football. This was the first year that the event was held over the weekend and superbly supported by Maxim Events who helped coordinate the tournament. 

Across each age group, team and pitch, pupils, staff and community came together and joined in with the love of the game. 

 

U11 Boys A - Mr. Wicling

U11 Boys A – Mr. Wicling 

The U11A team performed extremely well over the Straits weekend. Playing a very attractive style of play, they worked hard on keeping possession of the ball. We made it all the way to the final where we unfortunately lost. However, the development of our play was excellent and a massive success.

U11 Boys B - Mr. Jones

U11 Boys B – Mr. Jones

Following the valuable experience of the Johor Schools Cup, the U11Bs went into the Straits with excitement and improved confidence. After six games on the first day, including two wins and a narrow defeat, the team took fifth place and progressed to the Bronze Final with Repton and the Girls U13Bs. The weekend culminated with an emphatic final victory versus Repton – displaying the great progress and hard work from the team over the last couple of weeks. The squad look ahead to more fixtures, utilising the learning that has taken place. Well done to all involved. 

U13 Boys A - Mr. Skevington

U13 Boys A – Mr. Skevington 

The U13 Boys A team had a fantastic tournament losing cruelly to SJI in a penalty shootout in the final that had two brilliantly taken penalties earlier in normal time. The team had brilliant wins against Repton and MCM B while also producing two draws against SJI and ISKL. Finlay was great in goal conceding only one goal all tournament from the penalty spot. Lyon led the team brilliantly scoring two impressive penalties in the final. Credit goes to all of the boys and their level of effort and drive to work for each other and lift the trophy. It wasn’t to be on this occasion but we look forward to upcoming fixtures and the BISP tournament in Phuket later this term. We played some fantastic football with multiple players scoring goals and positive development shown throughout.

U13 Boys B - Mr Roberts

U13 Boys B – Mr Roberts 

The U13B Boys football team competed admirably over two days under the blistering sun in the Straits tournament. On Saturday, over the first 4 matches, they competed excellently to achieve a draw against ISKL, a 2-0 win against Repton and two narrow losses against MCM A and SJI.

On Sunday morning, a close match against MCM was decided by one goal. This meant entering the Bronze Finals. The boys started well with a 1-0 win over Repton. This setup a final match where a draw or win against ISKL would have meant winning the Bronze finals. A valiant display resulted in a 3-0 loss. 

All the boys were a credit to the college in their attitude and togetherness as a team. Under difficult conditions, they supported each other right until the end. Standout performances over the two days from Kintus, goalkeeper Leo and top scorer Torin.

U13 Girls A - Miss Hendle

U13 Girls A – Miss Hendle 

The U13A Girls performance squad truly showcased their mettle at the Football Straits Tournament last weekend, marking the first major international schools event of the football season. Despite playing two age groups above, their weeks of dedicated training proved invaluable in this high-stakes international school competition. Battling scorching temperatures, the squad displayed unwavering work ethic, resilience, and a collective determination to succeed. Day one concluded with an impressive record, marred only by a challenging match where they had just six players on the field. On day two, the team, well-rested and motivated, faced off against the top contenders in the group stage and secured a crucial draw. Advancing to the top 4, they battled through a fierce semi-final, ultimately securing a 3rd/4th place final. Down 1-0 at halftime, they rallied, equalising in the final minutes and forcing a penalty shootout. With our goalkeeper making 2 out of 3 crucial saves, the squad triumphed in the shootout, earning them well-deserved bronze medals. Their collective efforts and determination were truly commendable.

U13 Girls B- Miss Lyle

U13 Girls B- Miss Lyle  

This weekend saw the U13B Girls team play their first few matches together as a group for the season. The weekend was set up with new challenges for the girls, which over the weekend they grew and learnt to respond to effectively. This was a great start to the football season for the girls and hopefully a great future for them as a team

U15 Boys A- Mr. Smith

U15 Boys A- Mr. Smith

After a disappointing performance a few weeks prior in the Johor Cup, the U15 Boys were looking forward to scoring some goals and hopefully, winning the tournament. 

The first day started off with a match against local side Repton, with a 2-0 win giving us the three points. The matches to follow were a 1-1 draw against Epson, 3-0 win against CHIS, and a 3-1 win against Oasis. With the final match of the day approaching against top of the table Dulwich, we gave it our all, but a 1-0 loss left us disappointed. 

The final day started off with a match against our own B team, which with some new found confidence and energy, gave us a smashing win of 4-0. This was followed quickly by another 4-0 win against previously tied to side Epsom.  We were then pumped and ready for the final against yesterday’s victors, Dulwich. Unfortunately, a second 1-0 left us in second place. 

The unfortunate result aside, the Straits were only the second tournament played together as a team, and key performances from our younger players means we have hope for better results in tournaments to come. Massive congratulations to all who played, and a big shout out to Ben, our top goalscorer (5). Lots to look forward to with this team!

U15 Boys B - Mr Finn

U15 Boys B – Mr Finn

These boys showed great resilience and determination in defence — keeping four clean sheets in five games on day one, conceding only two goals. Their endurance earned them a place in the semi finals, where they faced Dulwich. Unfortunately despite yet another heroic display, the lads didn’t manage to book a place in the final, losing 2-0 to the eventual champions. 

The U15Bs should be proud of themselves; each played a role without fuss and worked hard to earn a fourth placed finish. Special mention to our goalkeeper, Zaid; each game he produced some acrobatic saves and played with confidence as our sweeper keeper.

U15 Girls A - Mr Duncan

U15 Girls A – Mr Duncan 

After Mr Harvey (Head of Football) had predicted a clean sweep of wins on day one, the pressure was certainly on the girls to go and get the results they were clearly thought capable of. After the first two matches, the record was 2 wins, 10 goals for and none against. However, they were brought back to earth with a bump by a talented MCM U13A team (0-0) and then a resolute ISKL (1-1). The final game of the day against Repton also finished in a draw and the girls were lying 3rd in the table overnight. On day two, the focus was simply on winning the tournament and captain Emily made sure of the team’s focus. A comfortable early win over Epsom paved the way for a semi-final versus ISKL. This time, the MCM U15A girls provided a much more mature display and stormed into the final with a 2-0 win. Goals from Syuen and Sol did the damage to ISKL and Poppy did the damage to herself with a fantastically brave challenge to deny the opposition. This dominant performance gave the squad confidence going into the final. Repton’s girls also showed up though and whilst MCM had the majority of possession and territory, they could not break through and nearly conceded a goal after a string of corner kicks for Repton. MCM’s charmed goal kept intact and the game went to penalties. Goalkeeper Rimi came to the fore and made the crucial saves, allowing Sol to score the winner on penalty number six. Tense it was but jubilant scenes followed!

It was a fabulous squad effort all day with Ying Ying showing coolness under pressure, Luna and Iman controlling the right side of the pitch and Siya, Cecile and Poppy defending with strength and class. In the end, Mr Harvey was right…and the trophy was joyfully lifted by MCM captain and stand out player for the entire tournament, Emily. 

U15 Girls B - Mr Scott

U15 Girls B – Mr Scott 

The Girls U15B team entered the Straits weekend knowing that it would be a challenging two days but with clear goals in mind in terms of being competitive, improving from game to game, and most importantly enjoying the experience of participating in such a big tournament. Although there were teams in our group with more skill and tactical awareness, there were none who outworked us and I am really pleased with the consistently high levels of effort that we displayed. Highlights included a 1-0 win against CHIS thanks to an Isabel Andriesz thunderbolt from the edge of the box as well as the silky footwork of Kitty, the uncompromising defending of Hannah, and the non-stop running and tenacious tackling from Chloe. All the girls should be proud of what they achieved over the weekend and I hope that it has fostered a love for football amongst them.

U16 Boys A - Mr Baker

U16 Boys A – Mr Baker 

The U16s performed brilliantly in the U18 straits and for such a young team to win all 5 of the group games on day one was highly impressive. Day two didn’t go to plan but to only lose out in the Silver final on penalties was still a great achievement. The team progressed well throughout the tournament with excellent leadership from Jean Poignee, some stunning goals from Alfie Wils and an impressive work rate and skill level shown by the team. The future looks very bright indeed and if the squad stay together they can all look forward to another two attempts to achieve the winners trophy. Well done lads, a stunning effort!

U18 Boys A - Mr Harvey

U18 Boys A – Mr Harvey 

The U18A team acquitted themselves admirably, showing a clear demonstration of learning from Games lessons, team camaraderie, and effort. In this regard, they took on the mantle of representing the College as the First Team with aplomb. 

Day one included four wins from five with a resounding 22 goals from 5 games, coming from six of the nine squad members. This was most pleasing evidence in the shift of attacking mentality with a variety of goals coming from pattern combinations, set pieces, and an emphasis on movement off the ball. 

Day two proved more nerve-wracking which required two back-to-back penalty shoot-out victories in the quarter and semi-finals. Jet, Alfonso and Zack kept their cool to emphatically score across both shoot-outs, with Max providing heroics of making three saves from five penalties faced. 

The final saw the anticipated rematch versus SSTMI who were resounding tournament favourites. It took until midway through the second half for the deadlock to be broken after a determined defensive display but ultimately, quality showed for a deserved SSTMI victory. The pupils were magnanimous in defeat and can be exceptionally proud of their achievements as Silver medallists. 

U18 Boys B- Mr Donnelly

U18 Boys B- Mr Donnelly 

The Straits Tournament proved to be a memorable experience for the mighty U18 B football team, despite their mixed results. Throughout the tournament, the Mighty Bs displayed unwavering determination and team spirit. While they faced several formidable opponents, and ultimately lost all their opening games, their spirits remained high until the shining moment of the tournament came when they secured a stunning 4-2 victory against Sunway School, showcasing their true potential. This win was a testament to the team’s resilience and the skills of standout players like Raz, Makoto, Zarif, and Kaz, who contributed some fantastic goals. It was a moment of celebration that exemplified the unity and camaraderie within the Mighty Bs, proving that they were not only skilled on the field but also a tight-knit and supportive team off the pitch. Despite some losses, their performance in the tournament was a symbol of their heart and determination, leaving a lasting impression on all who witnessed their efforts.

U18 Girls A - Miss Lowe

U18 Girls A – Miss Lowe 

What a performance from the U18A Girls for not only their first tournament, but their first external fixture this year.  We played some great football over the weekend and never backed down from a challenge. After a strong first day in the heat we made it through to the semi finals, with a podium finish in our sights. We battled hard against Dulwich with stand out performances from the defence, followed by some excellent goals and penalties from our attackers against MCM Bs and JBI, resulting in us finishing in an impressive 3rd place. Every girl played their part and offered something special to the team! Roll on Phuket!

U18 Girls B - Mr Waterhouse

U18 Girls B – Mr Waterhouse  

The Mighty Bs took to the MCM field of dreams at the weekend with a mission to have ‘fun’ and hopefully cause a few upsets along the way. The squad were playing as a team for the first time and the aim was to make use of squad rotation throughout the tournament with complete ‘switcheroo’ line ups for the first and second halves to ensure that everyone was involved. 

 

After a tense 0-0 opening match against Oasis, spirits remained high as for a brief moment we were ahead of the A team in the league table. However, our second match pitted us against pre-tournament favourites, Dulwich and the step up in class was evident as the team lost 6-0. Without the goalkeeping heroics of Zeynep, the score could have been in double figures. However, the team dusted themselves down for the local derby in the next match against the MCM A side. The Mighty Bs held them scoreless for the first half, before tiring in the second half to go down 2-0. A similar score was the result in the penultimate match against eventual winners Alice Smith, which meant that we had to get something out of the final match vs JBI to ensure we would not finish in last place of the group stages. 

 

The team arguably saved their best performance of the day for this match with Chiara breaking free and unleashing an unstoppable shot into the top corner to see us take the lead early in the second half. JBI threw everything at us for the final 10 minutes and cruelly equalised with one of the last kicks of the match. However, a draw was enough to see us advance in 5th place and set up a rematch with the MCM A team on day two. 

 

Another tense affair ensued but again the little bit of extra quality from the A side saw us defeated 2-0 once more. This left us in the 5/6th play off final and a re-run of the opening fixture against Oasis. Again neither team could break the deadlock – and so to penalties it went, with the Mighty Bs claiming the WIN with Chiara once again showing her deadliness in front of goal. Elisa stood out as a player throughout the entire tournament.

 

The spirit, attitude and determination shown by all the squad members over the two days was just delightful and it was a pleasure to be their coach. 

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