By Nicole Tan (16A13A), interviews by Noor Adilah (17S06B)
Photographs by Terence Tan (16S06C)
There was just one thing on the minds of all 20 footballers as they stepped onto the VJC pitch on Monday—that they had to beat opponent Yishun JC by a minimum of 8 goals in order to qualify for a spot in Round 2. These odds seem daunting to most – especially since many within the team were injured – yet as Christoph Chong (17S03K) put it, “they never believed that they couldn’t make it”.
This determined spirit triumphed within just the first minute of kickoff, when Tan Teck Ann (16S07B) drove in the first goal of the game, with the second goal by Edward Quah (16S05A) coming in only a minute after. The fiery start was kept up with a strong attacking stance that kept the ball in the opponents’ end of the field, and the team managed a third goal by Jonathan Chua (16S06D) just before halftime.
With five goals to go, in the words of team captain Ashwin Unnithan (16S06I), “passion and determination outweighed any doubt” and in the second half the boys only fought with more intensity to score their fourth goal, and then the fifth by Hiep (16S06D). A free kick by YJC was foiled by a save by keeper Zachary Wan (16S06Q).
As the clocked ticked down the last 10 minutes of the match, tensions grew thicker, but the team didn’t waste their chances, never hesitated to take every opportunity they had, and eventually wrested the final three goals away from YJC to bring the match to a high close. Everyone at the stadium could tell, as teacher in-charge Mr Lawrence Sunderaj’s could, how much “the boys played their hearts out and fought to the end”. The team’s astounding 8-0 victory secures their well-deserved spot in Round 2.
All the best to our football boys in the quarter finals!