Kaw Thoo Lei Wins 2010 Bay Area Refugee World Cup!
The 2010 Bay Area Refugee World Cup, hosted by the IRC in San Francisco and Soccer Without Borders, took place over the weekend of June 5th and 6th at Fremont High School in Oakland. The players formed national teams which represented many of the ethnicities with whom the IRC in San Francisco works, including Bhutan, Iraq, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Karen, Karenni, and Kaw Thoo Lei (Karen, Karenni, and Kaw Thoo Lei are ethnic minorities from Myanmar). The entire weekend was characterized by excellent play and wonderful displays of sportsmanship by all participants.
After playing three games each on Saturday, four teams advanced to play in the semi-finals on Sunday. The semi-finals resulted in Kaw Thoo Lei defeating Bhutan 1-0, and Bhutanese Union defeating Karen 2-1 in a penalty kick shoot-out after drawing 1-1 during regular time, meaning Kaw Thoo Lei and Bhutanese Union would play for the title of Bay Area Refugee World Cup champion.
Kaw Thoo Lei and Bhutanese Union proved to be well-matched opponents, regular time resulting in a scoreless deadlock. A goalless extra time period called for a penalty kick shoot-out in which Kaw Thoo Lei triumphed, defeating Bhutanese Union 2-1.
In the third place game, Bhutan defeated a spirited Karen side, 2-1.
The IRC and Soccer Without Borders would like to extend special thanks to Sunset Soccer, the Oakland Soccer Club, and the wonderful volunteers who helped out at the event for doing their part to make the Bay Area Refugee World Cup a success.
To view pictures of the tournament, click here.