Auckland Easter Tourney 2012

By Patrick Truong

Once a year NZCA holds an Easter tournament which consists of a cultural concert and a Sports tournament. It was held in Auckland this year with the sports being played in Waitakere Trust Stadium and the socials held in inner city Auckland. However, there were some dramas for the OSCA contingent travelling to Auckland!

After a lengthy flight delay from Dunedin on Thursday night and arriving in Auckland past midnight, we were then unexpectedly stranded without our transit vans to get to our apartments!!!  What a traumatic start to the weekend!!!  When we finally got to the St Martins Waldorfs at 1.15am, we were delighted and relieved to see that the accommodation was very comfortable. It was well priced and they offered a superb continental breakfast!!!. Many of us enjoyed the novelty of the pancake machine which operated on public holidays and the weekend.  One person actually consumed five pancakes in one sitting and rumour has it that it could have contributed to his many three pointers throughout the tournament!!!

OSCA had a contingent size of 60 participants (present and ex-OSCA players) to compete in a range of sports and to show the other contingents how the Scarfies drink  . . . unfortunately we had Colin Chin, so there wasn’t much consumption going on. Like every Easter tourney, there is an Opening Ceremony (Cultural Concert), and the content was very traditional this year. A view shared by some of our younger OSCA members present at the concert was that they missed seeing some more modern cultural items in the programme.  However, the concert did prove to be nostalgic for Boris Ma, because it reminded him of his mother land. 
After 1 ½ hours of the Cultural Concert the sports finally started! OSCA had two Men’s Overs teams and one under 21 Girls basketball team, which did well. OSCA Blue (young’ins) made it to the quarter finals by winning 1 game in the round robin beating Wellington C but unfortunately lost to Christchurch A.  OSCA Yellow (oldies) didn’t win any round robin games and won 1 plate game against Auckland B. The under 21 girls beat Auckland but were unable to beat Canterbury to make it into the finals.

OSCA finally got some wins from tennis having Conrad Wong & Matt Foo taking out the men’s doubles and Conrad Wong & Brittany Wong taking out the mixed doubles. They hit some amazing shots and never looked like losing to anyone. We also had an amazing table tennis player by the name of Lisa Yue who ended up playing with her weak hand because the competition was so easy. Michael Seow and Jessica Seow ripped up the athletics taking the men’s mile and woman’s 800 respectively.  OSCA also entered some teams for indoor soccer, netball, volleyball, badminton (Matt Foo and Howard Sia got third placing out of twelve teams) and the OSCA Yellow Indoor Netball team won the plate final.

OSCA brought four trophies back to Dunedin: Men’s mile, Women’s 800m, Women’s singles table tennis, and the Goodwill and Friendship Cup. The latter cup was a credit to everyone in the OSCA contingent as the Auckland organisers take a vote on who deserves it the most!!!
Night events consisted of bowling for the under 18’s and night clubs for the over 18’s. The night time social events were a blast and I know that most of us enjoyed it.  Many of the other contingents, including the OSCA over 20 members were intrigued  to visit the massive pointy tower in the middle of the city  . . especially one of our  OSCA players  who has mastered the roulette table!!!  
The highlight was the  ball.  This was held at the Rutherford Hotel which was a classy venue with a Casino Royale theme.   The buffet meal was excellent and there was enough for 2nd and 3rd helpings!!!  The presentation of cups was swift and the music was good.  To keep with the Casino Royale theme, there was a Black Jack table and a Roulette table where the dealers taught the players how to play these sorts of games.  Many of the people who attended the ball could then experience these games with fake casino chips and amass thousands of dollars.!  All the participant’s names were thrown into a hat and a prize draw was announced at midnight for two fabulous prizes!!!  There was also a popular photo booth where free photos could be taken throughout the night . This allowed the younger ones to capture the great time that they were having at the ball…..

Thanks to the everyone who looked after the contingent over Easter:  Frances, Linus & Leanne, Raymond & Sharon and Janice & Peter.
Overall, it was an enjoyable Easter Tournament where old friends spent time with each other and new friendships were made…..