TAYLOR’S SWIFTIES AIM TO BE ON SONG
Raimi and his team out to make their mark in XBall meet
THERE’S much more to grasp about the game of dodgeball than just knowing that it focuses on two groups of players trying to avert being hit by one another’s shots on opposing sides in an area almost the size of a futsal court.
Did you know that instead of evading the ball, the player can also catch the ball — but in full — in order to eliminate his/her opponent?
And did you know that the game’s unspoken rule is not to aim at the face? But accidents do happen and players occasionally get hit in the face albeit risks of getting cramps are much higher than actual injuries.
Without a doubt, the 2004 movie Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story has caused a spike in interest in the game among Malaysians so much so that they have improved from strength to strength, attested by the national women’s team emerging tops globally after winning their firstever gold medal at the 5th World Dodgeball Championships in Melbourne last Saturday.
The Malaysian men’s team were also not to be outshone, retaining their World No 2 position at the same meet.
However, members of the Taylor’s College Swift Dodgeball Club in SS15, Subang Jaya, Selangor, that were set up in 2015, do not harbour such high worldly aspirations.
Their president, Raimi Imran Mohamad Ronnie, explained that due to the short study programme undertaken by their members, the club are unable to move above the beginners’ level, or at best elementary stage.
“Taylor’s College offers three programmes — A-level, CPU (Canadian Pre-University) and SAM (South Australian Matriculation) — which are generally about one year to 15 months.
“As such, most of the Swifties (as the members are known) leave the club after completing their studies for tertiary education,” said Raimi, 18, who will be completing his SAM programme at year’s end.
As such, the dodgeball club, formed in 2015, pale in comparison to their more illustrious and highlyskilled Storm counterparts in Taylor’s University Lakeside Campus in Sunway.
With the luxury of their players staying at least three to four years, the Storm team have had won numerous dodgeball tournaments.
In contrast, the Swifties’ best result was reaching the semi-finals of last year’s Rookie Season One Dodgeball tournament. And most recently, they made the quarter-finals of the Under-18 category in the Fit For Life Fair Live Dodgeball tournament in Kuala Lumpur last month.
Come Saturday, the Swifties end, following which they would have had completed their studies,” said Raimi, who has been playing dodgeball for the past hope to excel two years after getting hooked on in the XBall it while studying at an international tournament in school.
Oasis “It was fun when I started playing Damansara, dodgeball and turned into a Petaling Jaya, hobby when I saw my skills improve,” organised by said Raimi, adding that a the Malaysian rubber-coated foam ball is used Association of during training and tournaments Dodgeball, of instead of a hardball. which the club “The foam ball is faster and are an affiliate. easier to aim while less painful if
Raimi, who one is struck by it,” he said. became a Swiftie last August and The Swifties, with about 100plus was appointed president in registered members, of February, is keeping his fingers whom only over 30 are active, crossed for a positive outcome conduct training twice a week but realising that they are a training (two hours each on Mondays and club honing the players’ individual Wednesdays) at their campus’ skills, he is not having basketball court and at the nearby high expectations. City Harvest grounds, where
“We are slightly below average the members chip in to pay for as compared to other teams of the RM50 rental cost. our calibre and standard. This is “There are three main rules for because 95 per cent of the players dodgeball players: integrity, who join the club manage to sportsmanship and honesty. pick up the skills only at year’s During our training sessions, which we conduct among ourselves without an official trainer, we do warm-up exercises following which we practise ball-throws for 30 minutes. And we will use the remaining time to devise our game strategies and improve our performance,” said Raimi, adding that the club have three teams: males, females and co-ed.
Nicole Tan, the captain of the female team, said she joined the Swifties because she wanted to try something new and which was also a non-traditional sport while making new friends.
The club’s vice-secretary, Lim Zhi Xuan, became a Swiftie as she wanted to have fun while gaining courage and teaching her the importance of teamwork.
Vice-president Lee Wen Hong said his interest in dodgeball was piqued after watching a video of a player who did a flip while evading a shot.
Swiftie Lee Jing Wen found dodgeball to be a trendy and social while getting a good workout and feeling the release of endorphins.
Members of the Taylor’s College Swift Dodgeball Club in action at the FitForLife Fair tournament last month.