137. Manila SpiritsDate: 17/11/2012 - 18/11/2012
Location: Alabang Country Club, Manila, Philippines
Team name: Cabs are Here
Finishing postion: 9/48
Comments: This was an amazing tournament, with two days of hard played ultimate, and three nights of great parties. The format is Open/Women's on the Friday, then mixed on the weekend. We only played the mixed but a lot of our team members played the Friday as well. Cabs are Here had won Australian Mixed Nats, but not all of the team could make it so they filled it out with pickups from the rest of Australia and overseas. Kristjan was living in Singapore and Lelde in Bangkok, and they both played with us, which was awesome.
We flew in from KL on Friday evening and went straight to the party. They had free cocktails and the bar staff knew their stuff. The flaming shot they called Armageddon was a great warm up for the tournament.
Manila is a crazy place for traffic but has reasonably cheap taxis, so we could catch a taxi to the fields for around $10 even though it took about an hour. The time it took to get places is pretty much the only problem with the tournament. The fields were in a gated community with security, and were excellent quality fields.
I can't recall the games on the first day, but we did reasonably well (possibly winning all our pool games) and earned ourselves what should have been an easy crossover to make the quarters. Boracay Dragons had had a surprise loss to Junk though, and we ran into them instead. They crushed us, but we won the rest of our games to end up as "Division Two Champions". Hooray! The level of competition was quite high, and even though we had a bunch of excellent players we had a few very tough games.
The Saturday night party was a big one, with free beer and rum and a whole lot of very sociable people. The Asian scene seems to be very easy to get into and meet new people. We had one major party injury, with Stef breaking his foot on the dance floor. The Sunday night party was at the fields after the final. A sort of acrobatic dance troupe put on a superb show which involved throwing a girl quite a way into the air. There was also more free beer, although it was limited. Things had escalated for our team by the time the sun went down, and a few people had to be helped home.
On Monday we flew to Boracay with Kristjan. There were heaps of other ultimate players on the island, and local players put on parties at bars they owned on the Monday and Tuesday. More free drinks and big nights, but relaxing on the beach instead of playing ultimate.
Overall it was a superb experience, and if I get the opportunity to go again I certainly will.