Friday, 21 February 2014

by Nicole Lee Poh Sim, Ow Syen Yee and Lai Li Chan, Junior 1 Higgs, Class of 2015


After a long break from last year, the Annual Games Carnival 2014 resumed with three events - intense matches of squash, black and white chess, and barbecue session, also known as House Decoration.

The day started of with chess which was held in the Cheras campus. Moving simple black or white pieces and following a set of regulations really isn’t as simple as it sounds. House captains were panicking, trying their best to find extra players to avoid getting walked over. After the players were briefed, the games finally kicked off with Helang against Harimau and Seladang against Beruang first. The game was played as a round-robin tournament. In the very end, it was the Seladang boys and Helang girls who triumphed over all the houses in the tough battle of wits.

Helang Chess girls captain, Ambika Meenatchi, (whose prowess in chess definitely runs in the family looking at previous Helang Boys Captain and winner, Annamalai Meenatchi) shared her chess experience with us.

"I was extremely excited earlier on when I was appointed to be the next captain for chess because I always thought it would be fun. However, it was only this year when it dwelled upon me that being a captain wasn’t all smooth sailing. I would say it wasn’t as tough as I thought it would though, because Helang already had an almost full team from last year with only one missing person. Finding that one more person to complete Helang's dream team was my only obstacle. When we found out that the person who just joined our team won her all matches, it made me beam as we won the gold again! I'm proud to be able to continue Helang's winning streak in chess and I hope the future Helang batches keep it going strong!"

Photo Credit: Encik Khairul

On the same day, the four house-coloured pavilions at the very end of the field stood proudly, waiting to be decorated. This year, the Beruang went for a ‘Toy Story’ theme, Harimau, ‘The Hunger Games’ theme, Helang, an Egyptian theme and lastly Seladang, ‘Globe Trekkers’. The final scores between the first two spots were very close, Helang managing to grab the gold with just a six-margin gap between Seladang. Here's a sneak peak into what really goes on during presentations on House Decoration day as quoted by Khor Su Wern, from Helang house and Amanda Lee of Seladang house.

Photo credit: Encik Khairul

“The centerpiece of our pavilion was a pyramid made of rafia string tied onto hooks nailed into the floor. Inside the mysterious pyramid was the tomb of Queen Eaglepetra, with her two guardians holding staffs made of oars (the mystery item). The judges were researchers and archaeologists who had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to venture into the tomb of the mighty Queen Eaglepetra. But first, they had to decipher a code to enter the mysterious land of Eaglegypt. On Valentines Day (the other half of the mystery item), Eaglepetraʼs heart was broken 5,000 years ago by her lover and her heart was scattered around Eaglegypt. The researchers had to find those missing pieces of her heart in the river Nile and place them on her tomb in order to resuscitate the queen. To get to the tomb, judges also had to dance, sing and satisfy the mummies of the Nile. In the end, they successfully manage to resuscitate Queen Eaglepetra and all the mummies of the Nile and Eagleyptians celebrate with a Helang cheer. All the hard work under the sun was worth it, as Helang managed to grab the gold!”

Photo credit: Encik Khairul
"Our theme being Globe Trekkers, we decided to turn our pavilion into an airport and airplane. After the whole check-in process including our very own friendly 'bulldogs', the judges were led onboard the plane with the customary 'Welcome abroad Buffalo Wing Airways!'. Stewardesses then led them to their first-class economy airways seats - a pile of newspapers on the ground. The judges were flown to New York to witness the first event of the year, the dropping of the bull in Timesquare! After the countdown, the plane passed over Japan whereupon judges were graced with the presence of Master chef TeriyakiEdamame - a culinary wonder who served up Ocha and sushi for breakfast. The last stop was India! Where famous director Shazwan Khan was furious over a shortage of backup dancers for his upcoming film. Of course, the passengers were invited to volunteer, and they all jived in their seats to a mash up of famous Bollywood music. Before the plane touched down, a special announcement was made as the tour guide proposed to one of the judges on the plane! After a tragic rejection 'Sorry, I have to ask my husband first!', the plane went through some turbulence (looking at our windswept waterproofing sheets, it definitely looked the part) due to some thunder in the air before landing safely." 


Photo Credit: Encik Khairul
The last event of the day was squash, which was held at the Jalan Duta National Squash Court. Helang bowled over Seladang in the first round for boys, whilst Beruang dominated the match against Harimau - no surprise since the bears have national squash player Nicholas Tan in their line up! This left Beruang and Helang to fight for the top spots, leaving Seladang and Harimau to fight for third and fourth. 


The first match for girls was between Harimau and Seladang. As a strategic manoeuvre, the captain of a few teams chose to play second or third rather than first, which lead Seladangs to battle against Beruang for first and second placing. In the end, blue and gold proved to be victorious followed by Seladang, Helang and lastly Harimau on the girls' side whereas Helang grabbed the gold for squash boys followed by Beruang, Harimau then Seladang. 
“As well as having our competitive spirit take over for those few moments in the court, we also tried our best displaying good sportsmanship."
- Lai Li Chan, Seladang girls squash captain

The event ended on a good note, leaving us to go back to school and talk about our “smashing” achievements, or “squashed” chances. No matter the outcome of the scores we earned, it was a great day filled with joy, laughter, a few minor injuries, and a soreness that doesn’t seem to go away. This is just the first annual inter-house event of the year, and it hasn't even ended yet! The final event for Games Carnival, tennis, will be held later on in the year, and will determine the final scores for the Annual Games Carnival 2014.
by Nicole Lee 23:44 4 comments | in , , , , , ,

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