On October 28, 2019, the ACS Knights Eagle Eye 8-A-Side Soccer Tournament was bravely inaugurated at the full-sized artificial pitches 1, 2 and 3 of Turf City.

A vision to unite the inter-year cohorts of ACS through the lighthearted playing of soccer had motivated a hyperactive Chng Nai Wee (ACSS85) to establish Knights and organise this event with Eagle Eye Centre as sponsor.

What promised to be a sunny sweet affair among teams from the ACS Secondary 4 cohorts of 1985, 1989, 2000, 2011 and 2015 turned out to be a thriller raining with sweat and tears.

William Kristanto (ACSI2000) was as colourful in his absence as was in his hard work in producing the swanky eye-catching soccer jerseys. Tournament favourites ACS2000, led imperiously by Poon King Yau (ACSI2000) was royal in violet for its clashes against the gray-draped joint-favourites ACS2011 commanded by counterpart Seet Ming Wei (ACSBR2011). Once lost, boys like Jesse Chang (ACSP2007) and Derrick Lui Chien Leng (ACSP1988), returned to the warm embrace of the ACS Family as the proverbial loved prodigal sons.

In spite of the chasm between the ages of the ACS2015 and ACS85 teams, there was all to play for in the round-robin format. Where the youth was speedy with vitality, the veterans countered with experience and guile. The tough attitude was epitomised by a body block by Ong Eng Meng (ACSS85), as he shielded the ball but at the same time threatened to decapitate a grinning opponent.

The huge silver trophy for the Open Age tournament was up for grabs, while the modestly sized Veterans Cup was a direct headto- head winner-takes-all between dark green ACS89 captained by Chen Wen Young (ACSS1989) and yellow ACS85 headed by Kenny Teo (ACSS1985). Marauding relentlessly, Yellow just could not nest the ball into the net; a quick counterattack by Aidil Idris (ACSS1989) of the Green found himself one-on-one with the goalkeeper, and he coollyslotted the ball in for victory in the dying embers of the game.

The initial burst of rapid-fire games under the blistering sun simultaneously across 3 pitches involving all teams was halted by an hour of teasing rain and flashes of lightning. The downpour that seemingly came from nowhere gave the teams a restful reprieve while the tacticians evaluated their play and tinkered with the line-ups. The convergence of 3 fields into one made spectators of all players.

Meanwhile, ACS2015, otherwise known as IBDP Cohort of 2017, was scything through all opposition with a youthful effervescence akin to lawnmowers running amok on tender blades of grass. Blitzing ACSS85 4-0 within 16 minutes and blinding ACSS89 7-0 in the same spell, IBDP17 grounded the crimson Eagles 2-0, edged out ACS2011 1-0 and shared goalless spoils with ACS2000. Nonetheless, the possibility of IBP17 being overtaken by ACS2000 in the last round of games ensured a tense nail-biting climax. An all-out assault by ACS2000 failed to shoot down Eagles who bravely forced a late 1:1 equaliser, leaving young blood IBDP17 a trot towards the Open Trophy. With no goals conceded, Meredeth Chin Choon Siang (IBDP 2017) won the Golden Glove, while 20-year-old Ezra Lim Pin (IBDP 2017) received the Golden Boot accolade for an astronomical 7 goals scored.

In the final match, ACS85, lit by Most Inspirational Veteran Player Award recipient Leong Weng Piew (ACSS85), rose to the occasion with a 2-0 upset of ACS2011 that was graced by Most Promising Young Player awardee Ngen Ge Liang (ACSI2011).

Unexpectedly, half-centenarian Chng Nai Wee became the oldest player to score from open play. Wrong-footing the defender, he cut the ball into the box and fired the ball diagonally low into the corner of the net beyond the desperate dive of Mohamed Khairil Anwar Bin Jasman(ACSBR2011).

It was no less fitting a finish to spark the crowd into cheers and bring the maiden tournament to a rapturous end.

Chng Nai Wee (ACS Class of 85)

Knights Soccer Unites ACS Alumni
Knights Soccer Unites ACS Alumni
Knights Soccer Unites ACS Alumni
Knights Soccer Unites ACS Alumni
Knights Soccer Unites ACS Alumni
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