By Philip John Siow, class of 1948, (Founder Committee Member)
OPA-SPI Games Carnival 2014
The month of August and September is traditionally a busy month for our Sports Section. This year the OPA-SPI Annual Games Carnival was held from 8th August - 16th August 2014. In conjunction with OPA 88th anniversary, an overall champion challenge trophy was introduced with the inauguration of “Mr Ng Yee Tim Challenge Trophy”. With a total of eight games namely, football, hockey, basketball, volleyball, badminton, table tennis, squash and tennis being played and competed, a total of 198 players from both sides participated to determine which side would be crowned the “Champion of Champions of OPA-SPI Annual Games Carnival”.
The games carnival began with badminton played at Summer Sport Centre Badminton Academy on the 8th August where the OPA was simply outclassed by the younger Paulians. The score was SPI - 5 to OPA - 2. Hockey was based on the match played between OPA and SPI in the Negeri Sembilan Hockey Association League where the OPA team was beaten with a score of 3 - 0, SPI at this point had a comfortable lead. As usual SPI played host for the main event on 9th August where four of the eight games - football, basketball, volleyball and table tennis were played. After a light breakfast, players from both sides warmed up for their respective matches. The weather was wonderful all the way. Both sides were skillful and evenly matched and at the end of the day, each side collected 2 points. OPA won in table tennis and volleyball while SPI won in football and basketball. With the conclusion of 6 games, SPI lead over OPA with an overall score of 4 - 2. Tennis and squash were both played at the Royal Sungei Ujong Club on 14th August and 16th August. OPA beat SPI 4 - 0 in Tennis, thus narrowing the deficit. However, SPI took the final game in squash with an impressive 6 - 3 win over their seniors. With this win, the overall result was a forgone conclusion - SPI emerged the overall champion by clinching the inaugural “Ng Yee Tim Challenge Trophy”. Winning and losing is part and parcel of every competition and it is something that competitors are used to. But an event like the OPA-SPI Annual Games Carnival is a platform where the unparalleled Paulians’ spirit prevails. This is where each and everyone who participates is a winner all the same.
Winner medals and individual games trophies were presented by OPA President, Mr. David Wee to the winning team. The “Ng Yee Tim Challenge Trophy” was presented by Mr. Ng Yee Tim to Ms. Shantini Lingam, representing SPI at the OPA Annual Dinner.