The much anticipated FCMB, Corporate & Commercial Banking (CCBG) Bonding Session took place on Saturday July 19, 2014 at the well-kept grounds of the Meadow Hall School, Lekki, Lagos. An occasion designed to nurture a perfect work-life balance in the Division, the Local Organizing Committee (LOC) led by the multi-talented Folusho and the vivacious Lady Shade, left no stones unturned in ensuring the event was first class. Resplendent in white, our amiable DH and host, was on hand to receive the special guest; the ED Operations of the Bank, who graced the event with his presence.
With great music blaring from the music system manned by our own DJ Jamalot and plenty to eat and drink, the stage was set for a blissful day. The August event wasn’t just for Staff alone; they gathered with their Spouses and Children in a serene atmosphere that encouraged everyone to let down their hair. The sight of the excited children running around the pitch, chasing the ball was a reminder of the country we once had, where children played unrestrained on the streets without fear of abduction or terror.
The highlight of the event was the football competition between the four teams; Olympique De Sean, Chism United FC, Athletico De Flakky and De Fas Internazionale. What we thought was to be a friendly game was treated by some as a more serious affair as they turned up, kitted in hard stud booths and shin guards as if they were competing in the FIFA World Cup. The workout session of Olympique De Sean, clad in their yellow jerseys, with Keem leading the routine in his Edgar Daviesque protective goggles sent shivers down the spine of opposing teams.
The medical crew were on hand to treat Athletico De Flakky’s A’Tare when he was caught by an elbow from Olympique De Sean’s Ecoman as they went for a header during the warm up. Efforts by Athletico De Flakky’s representatives to disqualify him and stem his influence were unsuccessful as his offence was deemed unmalicious and normal in a contact sport and not up to the barbaric standards of the embattled Luis Suarez.
The first game of the first round was between Olympique De Sean in yellow and Chism United FC in blue. The game ended 2:0 in favour of Olympique De Sean with a professional display from the physically intimidating species, they paraded. They controlled the game and were tactically astute in exploiting the defensive lapses of Chism United FC who were plagued by a tendency to showboat and unnecessarily hold on to the ball. There were doubts over the legitimacy of Olympique De Sean’s line up as some of their players were suspected to be mercenaries. These fears were however later proven to be unfounded.
The second game between Athletico De Flakky in orange and De Fas Intenazionale in white was won 2:1 by Athletico De Flakky in a classic counter attacking display. De Fas Internazionale controlled possession through the impressive T-Baba, Fola, Hodonu and Kaybams but were repelled by the defensive organisation of the opposition with Folusho, Saintphelix and yours truly; Kehno, stoutly shielding their territory. The introduction of Yelz for Athetico De Flakky proved vital as his hold up play brought the likes of Fanckie J, Eric, Onome, Omo-T and A’Tare into the fray and they went ahead to secure a win with the clinical finishing from Adekunle and Folusho.
The third place match between De Fas Internazionale and Chism United FC was keenly contested as no team wanted to lose two matches in a row. Chism United FC however seemed to have learnt from their defensive mistakes in the first game and held their forte with Matete, Anorega and Redpage impressing at the back. Two goals from their Captain; Bigshot and impressive performances from his supporting crew; Pastor, Tom P, Chux and Idopex ensured they won the match 3:0 to secure the bronze medal. The efforts of De Fas Internazionale’s Technical Adviser to bouy up his team was not enough to deter Chism United FC, once they had their noses in front.
The final match saw Athletico De Flakky looking to stake a claim for the trophy but the imposing Olympique De Sean team quickly settled into their game and began to dictate play. Keem, Ecoman, Vieri, Wal’e and Richie were particularly impressive with their approach play and they soon went a goal up in the first half. Despite the valiant efforts of Athletico De Flakky’s keeper; Tommy who pulled off the most saves in the tournament, his side was eventually downed by an emphatic 3:0 score line. The introduction of Yelz and the inspirational play of Folusho could not spark the same revival against Olympique De Sean’s disciplined midfield and defence anchored by Keem, Yemi and Yinka. The goal of the tournament in my opinion, was the third goal of the match by Yemi, which was delivered with such power and accuracy that it was simply unstoppable. Olympique De Seun’s goalkeeper; Chris, who was idle for majority of the match, stepped up when called upon, to save a crucial penalty off the booths of Atheltico De Flakky’s A’Tare in the first half.
At the blast of the referee’s whistle to signal the end of the game, champagne flowed as O’nil, the elated Team Manager of Olympique De Sean led his team out to collect the coveted trophy from the DH. The victorious Captain; Ecoman, the most outstanding player of the tournament by my estimation, stood tall with pomp as he displayed the well-deserved trophy. The celebrations continued as the team in yellow reveled in their victory, lapping up the adulation of the delighted crowd.
For a job well done and for getting it right at the very first attempt, we doff our hats to the distinguished members of the LOC comprising of Folusho, Lady Shade, Yelz, Obyliscious and Opeyemi. They took every little detail into consideration and pulled off an enviable and memorable first Bonding Session of the Division. Judging from the level of eagerness displayed on the pitch on the day, one can safely draw the conclusion that our team spirit has been strengthened and by extension, no target whatsoever would be unassailable to the Division.