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SepaktakDrew: USA selects its five-man regu

Published on April 7, 2014 by   ·   No Comments

USA selects its five-man regu

For the first time in ISTAF history, USA will be travelling with a full five-man regu when they cross the Pacific Ocean and head to Bangkok the following month for the ISTAF World Cup, being held from 28 May – 1 June. This may sound like the non-news story, as most teams come with five men or women each time, but when you are usually travelling half-way around the world like the ALL OF US (and indeed the Europeans) need to do, and when sepaktakraw is not one of your nationwide sports, with all the funding which that brings with it, then getting the spending budget – and of course the talent – to have the full five is a big deal.

Captain and supervisor Tony Ontam is remaining in the feeder position he occupied on the ISTAF SuperSeries FINALS 2013/14, meaning disappointment for fellow setter Jeremy Mirken. The other four positions will be occupied by two sets of brothers – familiar faces in Ker and True Cha, plus new/returning players John and Houa Thao.

Ker plus True, we know them well. Genuine is a sharp young striker who has been around for most of the 2013/2014 time of year, while Ker came in at the Finals in Kuala Lumpur in March and looked very good at the tekong position. So let’s hear more about the new boys, from Tony Ontam himself.

“John Thao is a tekong who competed on the first ISTAF World Cup in July 2011 in KL, ” the captain explains. “He is very excited to compete at the second ISTAF World Cup and eager to assist Team USA to qualify for the ISTAF SuperSeries again. After he competed in the first World Cup, he or she took a break from travelling overseas because he wanted to finished his bachelor of science degree at the University of Minnesota. Now that he has managed to graduate, in computer science, he has already been concentrating on takraw again and improving his skills. He’s now extremely confident with his horse-kick service. ”

“Houa Thao is really a striker who has competed in local tournaments for many years with his brother Steve, including at the 4 July Hmong Freedom Celebration in Minnesota this past year. He is a roll-spiker who has a great jump on blocking. To have two strikers, one who uses the sunback (True Cha) and the other a roll-spiker is a big benefit for our group, because it confuses the opponents on blocking. ” Ontam meanwhile is going to take all the responsibility of feeding the second balls to strikers and assisting the team do double obstructs when needed.

Three of these five players were involved in the Saint Petersburg takraw tournament to celebrate the Lao New Year last weekend. Minnesota, with the Cha siblings and John Thao, faced California in the final, taking on former internationals Jack Harris and Jeremy Mirken as well as Moua Lor. The “old guard” put up a solid fight, even though they went down 22-15, 19-21, 15-9, they showed that there is plenty of depth in US sepaktakraw, should Tony Ontam be required to call on any of all of them in the event of an injury in the run-up towards the ISTAF World Cup in Bangkok.

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USA selects its five-man regu

For the first time in ISTAF history, USA will be travelling with a full five-man regu when they cross the Pacific Ocean and head to Bangkok the following month for the ISTAF World Cup, being held from 28 May – 1 June. This may sound like the non-news story, as most teams come with five men or women each time, but when you are usually travelling half-way around the world like the ALL OF US (and indeed the Europeans) need to do, and when sepaktakraw is not one of your nationwide sports, with all the funding which that brings with it, then getting the spending budget – and of course the talent – to have the full five is a big deal.

Captain and supervisor Tony Ontam is remaining in the feeder position he occupied on the ISTAF SuperSeries FINALS 2013/14, meaning disappointment for fellow setter Jeremy Mirken. The other four positions will be occupied by two sets of brothers – familiar faces in Ker and True Cha, plus new/returning players John and Houa Thao.

Ker plus True, we know them well. Genuine is a sharp young striker who has been around for most of the 2013/2014 time of year, while Ker came in at the Finals in Kuala Lumpur in March and looked very good at the tekong position. So let’s hear more about the new boys, from Tony Ontam himself.

“John Thao is a tekong who competed on the first ISTAF World Cup in July 2011 in KL, ” the captain explains. “He is very excited to compete at the second ISTAF World Cup and eager to assist Team USA to qualify for the ISTAF SuperSeries again. After he competed in the first World Cup, he or she took a break from travelling overseas because he wanted to finished his bachelor of science degree at the University of Minnesota. Now that he has managed to graduate, in computer science, he has already been concentrating on takraw again and improving his skills. He’s now extremely confident with his horse-kick service. ”

“Houa Thao is really a striker who has competed in local tournaments for many years with his brother Steve, including at the 4 July Hmong Freedom Celebration in Minnesota this past year. He is a roll-spiker who has a great jump on blocking. To have two strikers, one who uses the sunback (True Cha) and the other a roll-spiker is a big benefit for our group, because it confuses the opponents on blocking. ” Ontam meanwhile is going to take all the responsibility of feeding the second balls to strikers and assisting the team do double obstructs when needed.

Three of these five players were involved in the Saint Petersburg takraw tournament to celebrate the Lao New Year last weekend. Minnesota, with the Cha siblings and John Thao, faced California in the final, taking on former internationals Jack Harris and Jeremy Mirken as well as Moua Lor. The “old guard” put up a solid fight, even though they went down 22-15, 19-21, 15-9, they showed that there is plenty of depth in US sepaktakraw, should Tony Ontam be required to call on any of all of them in the event of an injury in the run-up towards the ISTAF World Cup in Bangkok.

This entry passed through the Full-Text RSS assistance — if this is your content plus you’re reading it on someone else’s site, please read the FAQ from fivefilters. org/content-only/faq. php#publishers.

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