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Virgin Soft Drinks School Champion's Trophy 2006

On November 6 the Chairman Bari Field in Banani was witness to a revolution; a football revolution that would be known as the 'Virgin Soft Drinks School Champions Trophy (SCT) 2006.'

With twelve schools participating, namely Scholastica, The Aga Khan School, Dhaka (AKS,D), International Turkish Hope School (ITHS), The City School, Manarat International Tutorial (Manarat), Dhanmondi Tutorial (DT), Mastermind, BAF Shaheen English Medium School (BAFSEMS), Loreeto School (Loreeto), Bangladesh International Tutorial (BIT), South Breeze School (SBS) and European Standard School (ESS), this event was the largest 'all English medium school football competition' to be held in Dhaka.

The unique concept of this weeklong SCT football festival was developed by the event management firm, The Source, who in collaboration with the Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) took the initiative to promote the most popular game in the world, especially for the English medium kids. With the Jubokfone football league concentrating on the 'national' institutions, this tournament provides a platform for the English medium students to display their talents on the football pitch.

Co-sponsored by Brac.net and DHL, and with media partners Radio Foorti and BanglaVision, the event promised to deliver a week of fun-filled entertainment.

The twelve teams were divided into four groups (which were named after the four flavours of the title sponsor Virgin Soft Drinks; now isn't that taking advertising a bit too far?) of three in which each team played the other only once.

Following standard FIFA 11-a-side rules, the first match between one of the favourites Scholastica and ITHS lived upto to the hype in a 4 goal thriller. Though all the 4 goals were in favour of Scholastica, the match nevertheless exhibited the great skill of players from both the sides. Scholastica advanced to the quarters with a 10-0 thrashing of newcomers, City School who were playing a relatively young squad. ITHS moved on to the knockout phases as runners-up of the Virgin Red group as they overwhelmed City School to grab the victory.

In a Virgin Blue group match another one of the top seeds AKS,D played against Manarat in which AKS,D grabbed a convincing 2-0 win. They also won their other group game against DT with the final score being 3-1. The runners-up of this group were Manarat who beat DT by 4 goals to 1.

Mastermind recorded victories over BAFSEMS and Loreeto with the score lines being 2-0 and 6-0 respectively and so paved their way into the quarters as Virgin Cloudy Lemon group leaders. Rishad's trickery with the ball left the oppositions defence baffled and Mujib's pace was a constant threat from Mastermind. BAFSEMS also went through to the round of eight thanks to their win over Loreeto.

BIT showed that they meant business, as they cruised through the group stages with a goal-difference of +10. Rubayat was on form for BIT as a he notched up quite a few goals. Virgin Orange group runners-up were SBS who defeated ESS 4-0.

Thus the first quarter-final between Scholastica and Manarat was set and Scholastica continued their stride towards the championship with a 3-0 victory. Navid of Scholastica seems intent to pick up the golden boot and is currently the leading scorer of the tournament. He seems to form a formidable strike partnership with his twin brother Nafi.

AKS,D fought it out against ITHS in a match that had its share of controversy with the referee issuing 3 red cards and hoards of yellows. However the quality of AKS,D prevailed with the final score being 2-1 in AKS.D's favor. Aamer doing what he does best, got all the goals for AKS,D so far. Mehran and Intekhab were making their opposite numbers' entry into the box difficult and Rasiqh was a force to be reckoned it.

The first upset of the tournament came in the quarterfinal between Mastermind and SBS. Zeyn's performance for SBS was singled out to be the best in the tournament so far. Mastermind were held to a draw in normal time but failed to convert from the penalty spot as SBS won the match by 3 penalties to Mastermind's 2.

BIT too made their way to the semis by beating BAFSEMS with a solid 2-0 win.

Although the semi-finals and finals were supposed to be held on the 12th and 13th, due to our ever-improving (cynicism intended) political situation the dates had to be shifted to the 16th and 17th respectively.

Some cracking fixtures are lined up as AKS, D take on BIT and Scholastica face the surprise packages SBS.

Spectators are welcome to come and watch the matches by giving an entry fee of Tk. 20 only. There was also active participation for the female population of the schools as they took part in a half-time penalty shootout competition throughout the tournament. The organisers have planned a Playstation-2 videogame tournament to be held on the day of the final as well as a fire-spinning show.

The Source plans to not only make SCT an annual event but also promote other sports like volleyball basketball, etc in a similar manner.

Amer Khan, Managing Director of The Source replied when asked why he organised such an event: “As I was growing up I saw a lot of people being misled into unwanted practises and I believe that getting youth involved into sports would be a great way to keep our new generation on the right track. We also hope to discover young talent and that is why BFF's support is so valuable to our cause”

By Maimun Mustafa

Bargain hunting

Winter is the season for parties and get-togethers. And of course as a hip and happenin' teens you would want to look your absolute best. It wouldn't hurt either, if you could get that oh-so-desired outfit of yours with a just as great price tag attached to it. Allowances nowadays don't seem to stretch as far as they used to what with daily expenses of snacks and other stuff added to the mandatory amount spent on your honey(ah ha!) So where would you go to get good clothes at rock bottom prices(or as near bottom as you can get?) with that precious pocket money of yours(or your dads money, whichever way it works)?

Chandi Chawk: The place to go for good stuff at low prices. You can get nearly everything, for guys and girls alike at Chandi Chawk in different price ranges.

From gorgeous to everyday material for salwar kameezes to t-shirts for guys, there's a place for everything at Chandi Chawk. And you will probably benefit from the lower prices if you are good at bargaining or are accompanied by someone who possesses that God given talent. Not being able to sharpen my skills in the art of entering into banter with the shopkeepers I always make sure I drag an unwilling person along to do it for me.

Gausia: Next door to Chandi Chawk, Gausia is a great place for jewellery of all kinds. The variety of things available here makes me swoon and wish I could have brought along a few hundred taka more. From earings to bracelets to anklets to churis of different types, colours and sizes, this is the best place to accessorise.

New Market: Opened sometime in the '50s New Market is known by everyone and anyone as the place to go to buy anything. It had been planned and built long before power-sucking shopping malls were heard of or deemed as one-stop shopping havens.

It's still a great place for teens to shop for all occasions. Be it caps, belts, clothes, bags or accessories for both sexes, everything is available at reasonable prices with a bit of bargaining power.

Bongo Bazaar: Located in Gulistan, this is another market, which is jam-packed with clothes in narrow golleys. If you don't mind shopping amidst thick crowds in narrow spaces then this is the place for you. Many of the clothes (skirts, t-shirts and so on) here are of export quality and may have been rejected because of small defects.

College Street: I'm not sure if this place has a specific name or this is how everyone alludes to it but the place adjacent to Dhaka College is a fabulous place for western garb for females and t-shirts, shirts and trousers for guys. It's a big place so be sure to go there with time on your hands so that you can have a good look around.

Elephant road: Shoes! Loads and loads of shoes! No outfit,
regardless of type or style, is complete without the right kind of shoes to go with it. Elephant Road has long been synonymous to shoe-shopping. It has a myriad of shops and a huge variety of footwear, from converse sneakers to glitzy shoes fit for a wedding. Whether you are shoe crazy or not, make sure you stop by Elephant Road for the best buys in footwear.

All that being said, here's wishing you good luck in searching for that perfect ensemble!

By Ms. Shopaholic

Cheap eats

Hungry, bordering on broke and stuck in an elitist neighbourhood? Well, you don't have to jump off that CNG scooter yet, here's just the thing for you- a list of cheap eateries around Gulshan and Banani. Knock yourself out (always thought that was a better alternative anyway!)!

Maloti Lota:
And I don't mean the Tagore song! This little 'hotel' in the style of Al Razzak and Star in old Dhaka brings you naan, chaap, bhuna gosht, biryani, tehari and so much more right here in the middle of Banani, in the same lane that houses NSU and a few other universities. It is congested, the 'benches' creak and the tables are old and scratched. You have to wait in line and sometimes sit opposite complete strangers but hey, the food is amazing and you can down a 50 taka lunch plus a coke in less than half an hour so why complain?

Rasna Bilash:
This is more popular owing to its location on the Banani Road 11 shopping strip and all the more so since its recent expansion and renovation. It's a little more expensive than Maloti Lota and more spacious but I'm sure you can find your stomach's fill in a little over Tk-50 if you're into Bangla food (the usual- bhaat, naan, meat, etc).

Berlin Bakery:
Not in Germany but located just opposite Cooper's in Gulshan two, this mobile eatery has the best fried chicken that BFC will kill your wallet to feed you! The lane is also famous for the endless queues of people waiting for the bus. Berlin has chops, shingaras and other fried goodies that keep those people munching during their long waits.

This is one of the more popular places close to Cirlce 1 next to the Fuji Colour photo shop. It has delicious burgers and sandwiches mostly under the price of tk-50. Also available is an amazing fresh lime soda. In the evenings (after 4) they serve fuchka and chotpoti so if you're still around be sure to check those out. There are a lot of people who just drive in next to the store, order, pay and eat in the car. Word of warning: the place has no seats, so you have to eat standing up…

This place has the best grilled chicken ever. If you're there with friends, opt for the whole chicken which is a hundred something but if you're going solo, you can just order a piece with a naan and get it all within a 100 taka. The place is located in Gulshan Cirlce 1 on your left as you approach from Circle 2. They also have the usual (and delicious) Bangla menu.

The East West Lane:
The lane next to East West University boasts the best kacchi for only Tk-15-20. They give you a whole plate with lots of meat and the whole experience of standing by the street and eating is pretty interesting. The lane is always alive with students hanging out, gossiping, studying or walking around so it doesn't feel so ridiculous to stand and eat in the middle of nowhere. The place also has amazing little shingaras, a whole plate for only Tk-10. If you don't believe the prices, go check them out yourselves.

Shwarma House:
Speaking of Shwarma, the Shwarma House has opened up a relatively new branch in Banani Road 11 where although the rest of the menu is pricy, the shwarmas themselves are pretty affordable and are only a little over Tk-50.

By Diya


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