Ghana Lebanon Islamic Secondary School tops GSIER 2018 unity games

BY: Mohammed Ali
GLISS Senior Division players celebrate with their trophy
GLISS Senior Division players celebrate with their trophy

Ghana Lebanon Islamic Secondary School (GLISS) over the weekend emerged as the tournament champions of the Ghana Society for Islamic Education and Reformation (GSIER) 2018 unity games after securing two of the three trophies in the senior football division and the volleyball competitions respectively.

This was followed by Al-Rayan International School (ARIS) in second position with one cup in the junior football division and Madina Islamic School (MIS) finishing third with no accolades.

The intra-school competition was organised for Primary and junior high schools under the umbrella of GSIER; a non-profit organization that works towards improving the welfare of the Muslim community through quality and affordable education as well as proper Islamic guidance.

The teams from each school converged at the ARIS sports field on Saturday and played their hearts out with energy and passion while their contingent who had turned out in their numbers to support their school heartily cheered on after each score by their respective teams.

Some of the pupils from the participating schools

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At the end of the tournament, the best player for the junior football division was awarded to Arafat Mohammed of GLISS and the best player for the senior division was awarded to Abdul Rahman Habib of ARIS.

In the volleyball contest, the overall best players were awarded to Osman Yusif for the male category and Zeynep Kunt for the female category. They each received a medal and a bag as their prize.

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A volleyball game between ARIS and MIS

Commenting on the performance of his team, the sports coordinator for GLISS, Mr Hanson Owusu Tawiah said although their opponents gave them a tough competition, hard work and team spirit should be credited for the victory. 

"Their performance was fantastic. They worked very hard and deserve the win,” Mr Tawiah praised the team.

According to him, after losing out on previous tournaments the team had to adopt a different game plan which greatly enhanced their performance.

He used the occasion to express gratitude to the society for the initiative and urged for an increase in the number of participating schools.

The football coach of ARIS, former black stars player Laryea Kingston said although his boys put in their best they did not perform to his expectation.

The ARIS Junior Division football champions pose with their coach, Laryea

He explained that both the junior and senior teams struggled to win their first two games but was expecting a lot more hunger in repossessing lost balls indicating that it was one key missing component in their games. 

Although he was not pleased with losing the trophy for the senior division team, he was nonetheless optimistic that the experience will serve as a learning curve for the players to build on and improve their performance in the future.

Mr Kingston who obtained his coaching badge last year says his focus for now is to help nurture young footballers and boosting his credentials in the coaching world while biding his time to take on any of the premiership football clubs or national teams should the opportunity avail itself.

The Creative Manager for GSIER, Mr Wahab Hassouna congratulated all players and staff for participating and making the tournament a success.

He said healthy sports competition was an integral feature for the development of the pupils and GSIER was committed to providing opportunities for extracurricular activities to schools under its umbrella; to socialise, build lasting friendships and to have positive and enjoyable school experience.

The GLISS volleyball team lift their cup in celebration

Mr Hassouna believes that such tournaments are an opportunity for the academy of big premiership clubs in the country to scout for talents. 

He said prominent players in the world today were discovered and nurtured by football academies when they were young.

“The European teams have stronger teams because of the attention they pay to nurturing sports talent by investing in them which should be done here in the country,” he explained.