There was tension in the air when the referee blew his whistle to start the semi-final match between journalist futsal teams Kemenpora FC and CNN Indonesia FC.

At stake was a place in the finals of MavFutsal 2018, a friendly competition that we in Maverick organized to allow our hardworking journalist friends to have some fun and let off some steam from their rigorous schedules.

Steam, however, was building up in the Kemenpora-CNN game after he latter scored the first goal. Toward the last minutes of the first half a heated exchange of words could be heard from players from both sides. This soon escalated, and a Kemenpora Player slapped a CNN player. The referee intervened, stopped the game and issued a red card to both of them.

That didn’t help to cool things down and one of them was heard to have muttered: “After this, let’s have a talk outside!”

Fortunately, cooler heads prevailed, and the rest of the match proceeded peacefully.

The incident, however, underscored the passion that Indonesian journalists have for futsal. Their passion is intense that when Maverick called on them to register their teams, we received an overwhelming response.

Within two weeks we had 183 journalists signed up for the event as 15 men’s teams and 4 women’s teams.

The men’s teams came from the larger media houses and journalist groups, such as Kemenpora FC, CNN Indonesia FC, Forum Wartawan BUMN, Pewarta Foto Olahraga,  Forum Wartawan Eknomi, Beritagar.id, Tirto.id, MNC Group, TVRI DKI, Okezone,  Jurnalis Trunojoyo FC (Mabes Polri), Forum Wartawan Otomotif, Suara FC, Bisnis Indonesia, Forum Wartawan Telekomunikasi.

We also managed to sign up four women’s teams from Forum Wartawan BUMN, Kompas TV, MNC and Kompas Gramedia All Stars.

We at Maverick were pleasantly surprised by the warm response as it was the first time we had organized such an event. For the past five years we had been organizing an annual singing contest for the journalists called Mavoice. This year, however, we wanted to try something different and figured that a futsal competition would give our journalist friends a break from their reporting and editing duties.

We weren’t wrong as the turnup for the first and second day of MavFutsal demonstrated. Many of the journalists were accompanied by their families and friends who cheered them on.

The opening ceremony of MavFutsal received a boost when Kompas TV News Anchor Frisca Clarissa and Grid.id journalist Ali Sobri, both winners in last year’s Mavoice competition, belted out some popular songs, accompanied by a bevy of background dancers.

As hosts and organizers of MavFutsal 2018, we naturally fielded our own teams of MavBros and another one of MavChicks against the journalists.

Our MavBros gamely went up against the Forum Wartawan Ekonomi team but it was a massacre of gigantic proportions. The journalists managed to score 10 goals where we managed to score only two. Still it was fun and this strengthened our resolve to train harder for next year – after first getting ourselves toward a basic level of fitness.

But while the MavBros were licking the wounds of defeat the MavChicks, who played against the MNC women’s team, took losing to a whole new level. Throughout their game none of them even managed to reach the opponent’s defensive line, causing such boredom on the part of their goal keeper that she asked for coffee from their supporters to keep herself awake.

There were also plenty of prizes for the winners and spectators, thanks to the generosity of our sponsors. Their representatives, OPPO Indonesia’s Aryo Medianto, APP Sinar Mas’s Emmy Kuswandari and AXA Mandiri’s Aldyani Gloria Gracia also attended the event to add to the merriment and to give away prizes.

Two OPPO F9 were given to two top scorers of MavFutsal 2018. The top scorer from male team was Trans TV journalist Muhammad Zaky representing Forum Wartawan BUMN with 21 goals; and top scorer from female team was iDEA Online journalist Rebbiyah Salasah from Kompas Gramedia All Star team who scored three goals.

Moreover, MNC Media journalist Olena Wibisana came home with OPPO A3s as a door prize winner, while Beritagar.id journalist Indra Rosalia and Warta Kota journalist Vinny Rizki Amelia also won OPPO A3s as the winners of MavFutsal 2018 Social Media Photo Competition.

At the end of the event the FWBUMN Putra team emerged as champions of MavFutsal after they beat CNN Indonesia FC in the finals. Coming in third place was the team from MNC Media.

In the women’s section, FWBUMN Putri come in first place after they beat Kompas Gramedia All Stars in the finals.

MavFutsal ended with a great feeling all round and everyone looked like they were enjoying themselves, even when their teams were bested by others. Lots of journalists caught up with friends, former colleagues, rivals and made new friends during the course of the match.

That camaraderie between themselves and with our MavBros and MavChicks made the effort of organizing the event worthwhile, even though we had a hairy moment when tempers flared and red cards were issued.

MavFutsal was all along intended to give the journalists a respite from their reporting duties. As PR consultants who constantly work with them day in and day out it was great to see them letting their down.

Check out the highlights of MavFutsal 2018 in the video below!

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