*This post is written by Kew Pei Li, on her experience in this year's Youthwave.
Youthwave this year...
No-o, we did not win, or I'd have posted this up much earlier:)
But some things are sweeter than getting first.
A few weeks ago, I was praying that we'd get lucky for once and get a good, comfortable draw. Maybe a Firebrands team here (sorry, Tania) and maybe G-12's weaker teams there. Well, there's good, and there's bad, and I think we got a tough one: Contact Sugar (for the 3rd time in two years!), Innebabes and Violets.
And Frontliners Skyline having me, June, Sonia and Yue Shern: none of the three having played in the first team before.
Hardly a recipe for success.
So I risked a big chunk in my pocket and promised them a treat at McD's if they'd just get through to the second round. I half-regretted my words after we won all three of our games (Violets: 2-0, Sugar: 2-0, Innebabes: 1-0). In the second round, we played Innechicks-- eventual champions: 1-1, Salichicks: 1-0, and Firebrands Mah: 3-0. Topped by Innechicks on goal difference.
And right after our last game, we were up against Contact Sugar in the semis, and the target, as in our first round, was not to concede more than 2.
Playing six games (6=48 minutes) with no substitutes showed very much in this game. I was walking when I should have been running, the challenges were half-hearted at most, and the shots were awful. The more I played, the bigger the court seemed, and the Serene-Sheryn partnership was what gave Sugar the victory.
We lost 0-1, fair enough.
And for bronze... we had to play Kaki Bangku of UniHawks. A team that played very pretty floorball (comparatively) but who contrived to hit anywhere but the goal in their game against Frontliners Fiorano, our second team. I swear the post had more touches than some of the Fiorano's.
I told my team to go out and 'just have fun'. No more targets, no more expectations. Just play.
I think we played our worst game ever, but we escaped with a 0-2 loss. It's like Kaki Bangku had 90% possession throughout, and their shots count more than doubled our pass count.
It might not sound like the best Youthwave ever, especially with nothing to show after all that sweat. But what I've learnt from the past Youthwave's and Z-Liners is that winning; it's cool, but it's not all that.
Bringing together players who have little experience and really playing together, as one, as a team, gives you a sense of victory and achievement that even gold can't offer. Rising up above expectations and defying the odds, not because of individual skill, but because of what each of us sacrificed:
For Frontliners Skyline: Sonia, who guarded the goal and had black-and-blue knees to show for it; June, who faithfully stuck to her opponents and gave her teammates the chance to bang forward; and Yue Shern, who ran her heart out in front, often alone.
For Frontliners Fiorano: Yi Lin, Olga, Verina and Li-Ying, three of whom have never played in Youthwave before, to have battled and fought in that incredible game with Kaki Bangku, and to have come out with smiles on their faces even after losing all three games.
Best Youthwave ever.