Wednesday, May 28, 2008
RED SEVENS GET THIRD AT PDPBC
It was a typical Sunday night after a tournament- just getting home after the long journey back form Malaysia. MY things would be unpacked and all over the floor- just that this time there is a bronze medal among the pile of gear on the floor. I haven't gotten a medal for anything since I was swimming as a kid and I was pretty used to getting 10 gold medals plus a trophy at swim meets. This bronze medal is something else. What is more important than winning third place is that we have gone and tasted the challenge and pressure of playing in the semis.
We drove up to Port Dickson at 330am and got there just after 7am. Team registration was just a matter of showing up at the captain's meeting and putting your team name on the board. There were 16 teams in the mechanical division- mostly scenario teams.
We started off with a silly loss to a scenario team- I guess the R7s always have to start with a loss. We then drew the next game because time ran out and the other team didn't realise that they needed to re hang the flag within the time limit. After that we buckled down and won 8 straight games to make it third place overall out of 16 teams. The top 4 QF for the semis which we met our old friends Gang.
For the first time ever we out played and beat Gang in the first semis. I am glad we made it to the semis- and I am glad we played and beat Gang for the first time to get the monkey off our backs. Its a psychological thing- when they announced that we were going to play Gang- I went "fuck".
We lost our second game- partly because they played better and we let pressure get ahold of us. But again I'm glad the team got to this stage- the final game was winner take all to get into the finals. This is the main thing for me for the team for the whole tournament- the pressure and how it feels to get to the front door and trying to get in. We have never gotten this far before and to experience it - I think its the biggest lesson for everyone in the team for the first time. Playing that third game was more important than winning thrid place based on points.
Our game has come along way- while we cannot underestimate scenario players - they managed to beat us and Gang along the way. Each of us have brought our game to another plane- big ben pulled some dives and some good kills. Azlan's game is more aggressive than ever. Small Ben handled the pressure to perform and played a superb game going up and bunkering the tombstone and cleaning out the left corner and center. In that game alone his confidence and team work went really well.
I must say that everyone played and worked professionally as a team. And I went to Eagle Ranch wanting to play a fast and agressive running game - only to find that my team mates were running up faster than me- which is great.
My last game which was the last semi game with Gang- was bad for me because I failed to check my tank and I had to air. So I spotted and called the play. Jane on the left and Shaf in the center and me in the right corner were the last 3 with 2 guns firing. I made the call to switch bunkers with Shaf so he would be on the right corner and cross up with Jane on the left side. Its thru experience that I came up with the play and yelled at Shaf to get it done even though at the time it looked silly. But I know it was the right play to call and we would have gotten away with it if I'd stayed alive to tell Jane that she was going to be bunkered.
It was great to see everyone together- these are moments I treasure- to have the 6 of us working and playing together. 4 guys in 2 guys sitting out and crewing. Talking before and after the games to work things out. We have played so many games and tournaments together- we're all in synch now. All we need is that bit of extra luck and fortune.
I congratulate everyone in the team and a big thank you for BBen for staying up for 22 hours and driving to and from Port Dickson.