The 2005 SKLPC Tournament

March 22, 2017

Introduction

In 2005 the SKLPC tournament celebrated it’s 20th anniversary. The tournament has undergone an immense transformation during this time. The numbers of teams partaking in the football tournament has increased, from it’s early days of 8 Men’s senior teams to the 48 entrants for the 2005 SKLPC tournament. Different venues have been used over the years to stage the event, from Willesden Sports Centre, Parkside, Vale Farm and its current home SKLPC Northolt.

This year’s tournament saw the introduction of 3 new categories. As well as the Men’s Senior and Boy’s Under 16’s there was also the inaugural Girls Under 16, Ladies Over 16 and Men’s Over 40’s competitions. Due to the success and enthusiasm of the participants we are optimistic that they will become a permanent fixture within the SKLPC football calendar. It was noted that the introduction of the Mens Over 40’s category had clearly bypassed a particular player who was spotted playing in Group 6 of the Men Over 16 category !!! In a previous article he was described as an “old warhorse”, and for those who had the unfortunate opportunity to witness his performances would agree that the term was befitting. Having performed so magnificently over the years it is now time for him to hang up his boots and reflect on his previous successes!

The weather was not what we have come to expect for this time of year and the sun seemed to have deserted us. However the dull cloudy day was illuminated by the quality of football that was on show at this year’s tournament. The standard of football in all competitions was excellent and kept the large crowd entertained.

Group Stages – Men’s Over 16

The teams were split into 8 groups of six. The reigning champions Lombard Interiors Baladia Youth Club (BYC) “A” were in Group 1 and destroyed their opposition, scoring 16 goals in the process without conceding a goal. They had made their intentions clear, of retaining their trophy. InfaQP played good attacking football and with Sanjay scoring seven goals looked on course to join BYC in the second round. However, Woolwich All Stars managed to secure a deserved draw against InfaQP with virtually the last kick of the game and progressed to the next stage at the expense of InfaQP’s via a superior goal difference.

The highlight of the group stages match saw two previous champions go head to head, Kingsbury Builders Merchants and Dragons B in Group 2. The intense rivalry between the teams was evident from the whistle with crunching tackles from both sides, coupled with skilful play made it an entertaining game for the neutrals. The game was ultimately decided by some dubious officiating, Kingsbury went on to record 2-0 victory over their rivals. Kingsbury kept a clean sheet through the group stages in the process collecting maximum points. Dragons B were on course for an early exit when they were surprisingly 2-0 down at half time against Masters “A” but showed resolve, to recover and achieve a draw. This proved to be the catalyst Dragons “B” required to claim second place with Mitin scoring a magnificent hat-trick against Team Renaissance.

In Group 3 favourites Avi Contractors were slow to get into stride, drawing their opening two games 1-1 against Blades FC and Kings, who both played admirably, to earn deserved draws. Having overcome the initial shock of the two draws, Avi Contractors coasted through the remaining matches beating Woolwich Warriors 3-0 and Bolton Originals 4-0 to book their place in the next round. Kings gained confidence from their performance against Avi and remained unbeaten only to miss out on top spot by goal difference.

Group 4 saw the Bolton “A” and “B” teams go head to head in the opening game ending in a 0-0 draw. The first seven games in this group produced 2 goals, as a result of some wasteful finishing along with some great goalkeeping. Bolton “A” showed glimpses of the form that saw them progress to last year semi final, beating Rebelz 4-0 and Harambe Stars 3-0 with a hat trick from Nilesh.

Group 5 favourites Kera-Kundanpur “A” were given a tough test in their opening game by Bendev who worked resolutely to earn a goalless draw. It was only a matter of time before their quick and skilful play paid dividends and they won their remaining games comfortably with Kiran scoring a hat-trick in their 5-0 victory against Dahisara Youth. Bendev were a well organised team and secured wins in their remaining games but their inferior goal difference gave Kera-Kundanpur top spot.

Group 6 was very open with no clear favourite. Debutants Arlington Estates started impressively and won their opening game against Scorpians “A” 1-0. They continued to play well with some good defending and goalkeeping, only conceding one goal to win the group. Kutch 7 were runners up in the group. Dragons “A” were unable to find the net despite having the tactical knowledge of the “old warhorse” and surprisingly only collected 1 point.

In Group 7 Westside scored 17 goals to comfortably win the group. Wembley All-Stars were able to secure second place despite some indifferent performances. “Underestimated” finished a close third. However Westside 2 were disqualified from the second round, as they had fielded a number of ineligible players resulting in disqualification. The rule states, “A team can have two non-kanbi Hindus in a squad”. Clearly Westside misread this, as only two kanbi’s in the squad!!! Having had the opportunity to pursue through their entry form, it was noted that one of their players had been registered as Amit Halai from Baladia. Note there are no Halai’s in Baladia. A lesson to be learnt from this saga is that cheaters will be caught. Westside you have been named and shamed to deter teams from following in your footsteps. As a result Wembley All Stars and “Underestimated” progressed to the next stage as first and second respectively. Teams in Group 7 will be remembered for all the wrong reasons!

Harlesden FC with some skilful individual displays comfortably won Group 8 keeping clean sheets in every game. “Hate Us or Love” managed to secure runner up spot and also remained unbeaten.

Second Round – Men’s Over 16

Lombard Interiors BYC “A” continued their impressive form with a superb display against “Hate Us or Love Us” winning 1-0. Avi Contracts dominated Kutch 7 but were unable to breakdown the resolute defence. Avi Contractors hit the post and a great save by Kutch 7’s keeper ensured the game went into penalties. Kutch 7 failed to capitalise and Avi Contractors deservedly went through.

Kingsbury Builders were up against Underestimated. Kingsbury put in some crunching tackles to take the initiative and were rewarded with 3 goals in quick succession. Kingsbury continued tackling hard but soon found themselves a man down, having a player sin binned. It is with great regret that I need to report the scenes that followed. A Kingsbury player committed another foul and the “Underestimated” player that was on the receiving end retaliated resulting in a facial injury to the Kingsbury player. The match was abandoned and awarded to Kingsbury. We would like to stress that the tournament is typically played in a good spirit and despite the bumps and bruises participants receive they acknowledge that it is part and parcel of playing competitive football and there is no excuse in resorting to physical violence. This particular individual obviously didn’t and is banned from competing in future competitions.

Bendev weren’t able to reproduce their earlier form going down to Bolton “A” 1-0. Kera- Kundanpur “A” dominated their match against Bolton “B” but had to rely on a disputed goal to gain a 1-0 win. Arlington Estates and Kings could not be separated in the normal and extra time. Kings failed to score any of the penalties as Arlington Estates advanced to the next stage through a clinically taken penalty by Purshotam. Dragons “B” again dominated their opposition but were again guilty of wasting a hatful of chances against Wembley All Stars and had to rely on a goal from the final kick of the game to secure a win. Woolwich All Stars spurred on by their vocal supporters scored a penalty to beat Harlesden FC 1-0 to book their place in the quarters. Harlesden FC were aggrieved with the referee’s decision and vented their frustrations at the referee long after the final whistle…it’s only a game lads!!!!

Quarter Finals – Men’s Over 16

Lombard Interiors BYC “A” showed their pedigree with a fine 1-0 win over Kingsbury Builders who were severely handicapped going into this game by having only 6 fit players. Fatigue certainly started to set in by this stage and this was also evident in the other matches. Bolton “A” looked jaded and succumbed to a 2-0 defeat by Avi Contractors. Avi’s first goal was a joy to watch – incisive passes and good movement off the ball culminating in an excellent finish by Arvin.

Kera-Kundanpur “A” secured a 1-0 win against Arlington, courtesy of a goalkeeping howler. Dragons “B” again dominated their match but failed to score with Mithin in fine goalkeeping form for Woolwich All Stars. The match ended goalless and went into penalties. The game was decided on the 4th sudden death penalty. The pitch was invaded by the Woolwich fans on numerous occasions during the shoot out thinking they had won. Other supporters were left wondering if these guys could count but then again I did hear them count down from 10 when a player was sin binned and his two minute period was about to end!! They were right to begin celebrating on the third occasion when Woolwich scored after a Dragons had missed.

Semi Finals – Men’s Over 16

Kera-Kundanpur “A” started their semi-final in scintillating style against Woolwich All Stars and were duly rewarded when Jay open the scoring. Woolwich soon got themselves organised and stifled Kera-Kundanpur attacking flair. Mithin produced some excellent saves to keep Woolwich in the match. Somewhat against the run of play, Nilesh unleashed an excellent shot from an acute angle to equalise for Woolwich. The game went into extra time. Woolwich spurred on by their vocal supporters, who acted as their sixth men dug deep to stop Kera passing the ball and put in some crunching tackles. They counter attacked with great drive and determination and Gopal was able to take an opportunity to put Woolwich in front. By this stage Kera appeared exhausted and were unable to response.

Lombard Interiors BYC “A” were up against perennial rivals Avi Contractors in the other semi final. Despite the attacking flair possessed by both sides, the game became rather stagnant. It seemed that tiredness had set in and the mind set of both the teams turned defensive, knowing it would be difficult to come back from a goal down. Both teams passed the ball well but were unable to penetrate the opposition’s defence. The game unsurprisingly went into penalties which Avi Contractors won courtesy of some great penalty saves from Jeetesh.

Final – Men’s Over 16

Woolwich had reached their first final having battled gallantly in their last 2 matches. Avi Contractors had noted that Woolwich had played extra time in both the quarter and semi final and it was apparent that their game plan was to pass the ball around and make the tired looking Woolwich team chase knowing goal scoring opportunities would present themselves. Avi Contractors made the first goal look so easy. They stroked the ball around the pitch with Sunil virtually walking the ball into the net. Woolwich worked hard to try and get themselves back into the game and forced a good save from Jit. Avi Contractors then went on to dominate only to be rebuffed by Mithin, who pulled off great saves for Woolwich. Stan was denied a goal by the post for Avi Contractors. Avi Contractors, (formerly known as BeetaCom/PremierCom) won a record 6th title.

Boys Under 16’s

Group 1 produced high scoring games with “Unstoppable” the only team failing to score, in the process conceding 18 goals – the goalkeeper certainly wasn’t up to stopping anything! Last years champions the Scorpians were slow to get started and were held to a goalless draw by Bendev. However with the talented Karan, yet again in inspirational form throughout the tournament the Scorpians soon found the cutting edge and outplayed the remaining opponents to top the group scoring 11 goals in the 3 games. “Nudgematics” were also in fine form and secured 3 convincing wins to finish second.

Keyfit Baladia Youth Club “A” were looking good in Group 2 and were only really tested by Dahisara Dragons, a game that ended in a 2-2 draw. Keyfit Baladia “A” took top spot and were closely followed by Dahisara.

The first semi final was between Scorpians and Dahisara. Dahisara produced an impressive performance and had several early chances, but failed to capitalise. Karan was trying all the tricks in his locker to get that goal that would take Scorpians into the final. As the game headed towards extra-time the Scorpians unleashed one more attack to score an impressive goal to secure a berth in the final.

The second semi final between Keyfit Baladia “A” and Nudgematics was a tight affair. Nudgematics having scored 16 goals in the group stages failed to score past Keyfit Baladia “A” and the game ended goalless and went into extra time. Keyfit Baladia “A” managed to raise their game and scored two quick goals to win 2-0.

The final was played at electric pace. Keyfit Baladia ”A” had an early chance but were revoked by Scorpian goal keeper who pulled off an excellent near post save. Baladia had obviously identified Karan as the dangerman and kept tight on him but they could not prevent him from opening the scoring. He even treated us to a Chryuff, turn – albeit on the wrong end of the pitch! However it must be stressed, that it wasn’t just a one man show and his team mates also displayed their espionage skills by hitting the post and then the cross bar. Scorpians scored a simple second goal and this was followed by great third. To their credit, To their credit, Keyfit Baladia “A” continued to play expansive attacking football. They forced further saves from the Scorpians goalkeeper. Scorpians were deservedly crowned Boy’s under 16 champions for the second successive year.

Girls Under 16’s

There were 3 entries in this category. The teams played each other in the group stages, which all ended in draws. The top two contested the final. Unfortunately SKLPCC were involved in goalless draws and thus were eliminated. The Hells Angels and Girls United contested the final. The girls played extremley well alongside the elder ones and were not terrified of their stature. It was noted Nisha of Girls United age 10 was the youngest participant and played exceptionally well. The final was a tense affair with both teams attacking with vigour and defending well ending the game goal less after extra time. The game was taken into a dreaded penalty shoot out. Both goalkeepers made spectacular saves and eventually Hells Angels won in sudden death. Congratulations to Hells Angels and to Arti from Girls United who named Under 16’s Girls player of the tournament.

It must be noted that the quality and spirit possessed by all the 3 participants resulted in the most competitive category of the 2005 tournament and clearly negated the lack of entries in this group. We looked forward to your continual participation.

Ladies

The crowds flocked to see the opening match in this category. For those who were expecting to have a laugh at the expense of the ladies were clearly left disappointed. Yes, the girls could kick a ball, in fact the matches were characterised by some good passing and some hard tackling. Bolton had entered 2 teams in the Ladies catergory, however they failed to reach the finals.

The Golden Girls team kit had us all wondering whether they arrived to play volleyball, but they soon proved that football was their game and progressed through the group stage undefeated with impressive performances from Chetna and Daksha. It was evident that Chetna had not followed in the footsteps of her husband, who can be found at Bhavana Sweet Mart! Baladia Youth Club Ladies were not to be outdone by their male counterparts and put in some sterling performances to remain undefeated with Jalpa and Christina making valuable contributions. It was no surprise to see these two teams contest the Ladies final.

The corresponding fixture during the group phase ended in 1-1 draw. The Golden Girls were not as energetic as they were in their earlier games and struggled to create a clear cut chance. Jalpa scored for Baladia what could only be described as a fortuitous goal resulting from a horrendous goalkeeping error (although she later atoned for her mistake by pulling off two great saves). The Golden Girls could not make the breakthrough they needed and in the end had to settle for silver!

Baladia Ladies were deservedly rewarded for their attacking play and crowned Ladies Champions.

Seniors Over 40’s

There were four entries for this year tournament. The teams played each other in the round robin stage, with the top two advancing to the final. Boltonians wearing the traditional bright coloured neru hats started their 1st game with a ‘Haka’ dance hoping to scare the day lights out of Bendev. Clearly the Boltonians had been watching international rugby union games between New Zealand and the British and Irish lions. Gents may I remind you that you were here to play football. We may be able to accommodate your rugby requests next year !!!!!. Unfortunately due to a cheeky deflection from a shot by Bendev the goalkeeper was unable to stop the shot. Boltonians tried hard to get the equaliser but Bendev defended until the final wistle. Boltonians 2nd game against Scorpions ended with a goal less draw.

The Boltonians needed to defeat BYC by 2 goals to secure a berth in the final and Bendev had to beat Scorpions in the last game of the group matches. Boltonains gave everything they had and were rewarded with goals by Karsan and Suresh. Boltonians had done what was required from them and now it was up to Bendev to beat Scorions in the last game. Bendev age was catching up with them and were looking tired and it showed on the pitch. Scorions took advantage of this and scored a brilliant goal. Since Bendev was already in the final it wasn’t in their interest to chase for a win.

Bendev’s team contained players that had won the seniors tournament many years ago and players like Ned and Kenny showed that their footballing skills hadn’t completely deserted them. Ned had several early efforts for Bendev but didn’t really trouble the Scorpians keeper. Bendev’s defence then had a momentarily lapse of concentration and left Kurji unmarked near the edge of their area and he unleashed an unstoppable shot towards the Bendev goal. Bhimji and Ajay added 2 more for Scorpians, who proved to be worthy winners of this category.

Acknowledgements

This article would not be complete without acknowledging the contribution of the football committee: Samji Harsiani, Manesh Patel, Hasmukh Bhudiya, Sash Mayani, Ashwin Vekaria, Preetam Kerai, Rajesh Madha, Purshotam Patel Himansu Kerai, Rajesh Bhudiya, Mansukh Vekeria and Pravin Sutra. Central to the successful organisation of annual SKLPC 5-aside tournament was the commitment and efforts of the committee. If anyone is interested in becoming a member of the committee (irrespective of gender) then please contact one of the members.

On behalf of the committee we would like to thank the supporters who again attended in their masses to create a great atmosphere at this year’s tournament. We would also like to thank the parents of SKLPCC Colts for providing the food stall.

We would also like to take this opportunity to thank this year’s sponsors, Bendev and Global Holidays.

Congratulations to Ramesh in finishing seniors top with 8 goals and Karan of Scorpions who won the juniors player of the tournament.

The committee would like to thank all the teams for their commitment to the particpation in the SKLP tournament.

Finally we look forward to seeing you all here again next year!

Devshi Pindoria (Dahisara)
Purshotam Patel (Baladia)

For more information you can email us to info@sklpcfootball.com.