Saturday, October 31, 2009

Chennai Heat 2009 : Ultimate Frisbee Nationals : Chakraa - Champions !!!

Beach ultimate in India started off at Chennai , 2 years ago – When i came across this sport , i instantly got addicted to the quick thinking / running aspect of this sport. It has been quite a journey, since the last 2 years. Chennai Heat , which started off as a regional tournament in 2007, has grown to be the biggest ultimate tournament in India currently. 10 teams , over 150 players played in the Chennai Heat 2009 over 2 days, watched by over 2000 people each day

Since the 1st tournament in Novemeber 2007, i’ve been on the losing side – with the nov 2007 tournament hurting the most ( we lost from 4-1 up/leading , in the finals ).

The other tournaments that Chennai team played , were mostly ‘individual’ driven – 2/3 players stood out and dominated the team. Ultimate being a team game, Chennai ended up losing, despite playing some brilliant points.

When i started practising for the 2009 tournament, i noticed a distinct difference – many players were playing confidently / playing smart games. The pace of the game had improved and yet, most of the advances were solid – throwing to the free man, swinging around , waiting for the right cuts and cutters responding to the handler. All the practise games were tight ones and each of the teams looked like winners. All of the team members seemed to know what the handler was expecting instinctively.

It was after one of the practise days, i was thinking to myself about the possibility of the ‘first strike’ - Striking off #3 in this list. Seemed realistic .

In the tournament, Chakraa was playing as a team – everyone was having fun. Everyone was doing their bit – no spectacular plays, yet thrashing the opponents. The ‘hardest’ game was a 9-5 win. Chakraa won all the games comfortably. Final win wasn’t a surprise :) . Am sure, there was very little pressure on the individuals - 'Team' play carried us through :)

Interest in Ultimate is growing in Chennai – Thanks to CUF and some active players like Manu , Abhinav , Ajay , Mama , Bharani , Mondams , Subbu among others. They nurtured Stall 7, which is the team to watch out for in the coming tournaments.

Ultimate time ahead for the ultimate fans / players in India !

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Chennai Half Marathon

Yet another marathon , where the 'want' and 'execution' were poles apart. I wanted to do a sub 2 hour 21 km run. But never practised for it. An occasional 10 km sunday run and a 5km run on some days during the week happened. Before the run morning, the longest run i did was 12 km.

And naturally the result - 2:38 for 21 km .

However, the regular frisbee / cricket and the runs ensured i was NOT depleted at the finish line. But surely, i need to improve strength in the legs. The positives from the run - 5:1 run-walk technique and the identification of areas to improve.

Also, this run was my first fund-raiser run for Deepam - Run for a Cause. The big target is to go under 4:30 for the 42 km at Mumbai in Jan 2010 and also to hit $10,000 , through run for a cause.

Need all your wishes and support to hit both goals!

P.S Thanks to the energy bunny Shankar Lal for the pics!