Monday, September 22, 2014

Fair Play: Get ready for Sun.Star Football Cup

(This is my Fair Play column for Sun.Star Cebu's Sept. 22 issue)
Last Thursday, I met Chad Songalia, Milky Cañete and Neil Montesclaros--the men behind the Thirsty Cup--to discuss the details for another football tournament that they are handling.

The Sun.Star Football Cup.
 

This age group tournament that was first staged in 2012 after that historic Singapore vs. Philippines match will return for its third edition this year on Nov. 22 and 23, still at the Cebu City Sports Center.
 


And just like in the previous editions, it will still be for the age group divisions, but there’s going to be a new twist this year. Why not include the men’s and women’s open? Well, for most tournaments--since the organizers themselves also play--sometimes, it seems the focus is the men’s and women’s divisions, while the age group are but gravy. We want the focus to be the kids.
 

Yes, leaving out the men’s and women’s divisions means a dearth of almost 30 to 40 teams, but the past two editions of the Sun.Star Football Cup shows going all age group is the right way for us.
 

For this year, the divisions are the Under 7, Under 9, Under 11, Under 13, Boys Under 15, Boys and Girls Under 18 and the new division--the Boys and Girls Under 23.
 

We’re going with the Boys and Girls Under 19 and made it the Under 23, so the college kids can participate and not be left out to watch their younger teammates. 
Besides, during previous editions, most of the participants in the Under 19 division are those who play in the Under 17 division, so doing away with this age group won’t ‘disenfranchise’ a division.
 

Aside from the Under 23 division, there are going to be a lot of new twists to the tournament that would make it different from the other festivals.
 

 “There’s an app for that,” is the expression of the new age and there’s going to be an app for the Sun.Star Cebu Football Cup that will initially have the details of the tournament and ground rules.
 

And once it’s available, the schedules, too will be posted in the app so anyone with a smart phone can have a copy of the schedule.
 

And of course, also present during the meeting was the dynamic Roselle Reyes, our ads and promo manager, and she said that if the participants were impressed with the raffles and gimmicks last year, they’d be blown away this year.
 

 “Pa raffle ta’g flat TV,” she said during the meeting.
 

Last year, aside from the football tournament, the ads and promo department was also busy with two-other major sports events and for this year, it’s only one, so you can do the math. So better stay for the duration of the tournament, your team may not win a title, but who knows? You might just bring home the major prize of the day.
 

It won’t be the players and coaches, of course, who would get to enjoy the perks as this year, there’s going to be contests for the audience over social media.
 

So, mark that date and prepare your teams for the third Sun.Star Football Cup. 

This one will be the best, yet.
 

MISSING HOST. On a whim, I decided to follow North Korea’s official news outlet on Twitter. For the Asian Games, they of course, carry updates of their team’s showing, especially in women’s football where they won their first game.
 

If you read the story, you might wonder where it is played because there is not a single mention of the host of this year’s Asian Games, which is South Korea.
Makes you wonder, what kind of stroies would they come up with if their athletes beat South Korea in say, men’s football?

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