Monday, June 04, 2007


Nice going... CARD!

Real Osaka, avec poncy new Valencia rip-off kits from Thailand, took a trip up to Nagano at the weekend for the Eastern Japan ALT football tournament. I drank half a bottle of whisky in the car on the way up, which took some of the sting out of the seven-hour journey from Osaka, via Nagoya (twice).

Due to drop outs and injury, we were reduced to 11 players, but were still able to make the semi-finals, where we lost 1-0. We played seven games over the weekend and were fairly well knackered after the tournament.

Highlights of the tournament:

1. My customary janken (paper-scissors-stone for those of you who've not played Alex Kidd in Miracle World) mastery. I warned the British Embassy captain that I was a master of janken, instructed him to look me in the eye, beat him with a well-selected scissors, then announced that we would take kick off over my shoulder as I strode contemptuously away. Wonderful theatre.

2. My second-ever yellow card, awarded for a clumsy challenge from behind in the 2nd round. This happened early in the game, so I should have been on my best behaviour after that. On the contrary, I went in for an almost identical challenge right before half time. To my horror, the referee had his whistle halfway to his mouth, but I made contact with the ball this time and avoided a red.

3. Spectacular injuries! I had so much blood trapped under one of my toenails that it fairly squirted out when I went to work with the nail clippers this morning.

And it just happens that we have another tournament next weekend in Awaji, so I'd best recuperate pretty fast.

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