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Celebrating diversity through an inter-faith football match

Celebrating diversity in the first inter-faith football match

Football is undeniably a sport of international significance: it asks players to demonstrate teamwork, diligence, skill and wit. Despite questionable skill, faith certainly underpinned the monumental conflict that ensued on Sunday 6thOctober on Masters Astro between traditional rivals, Judaism and Islam: both Abrahamic, both grappling for the sporting victory, along with that intense sense of pride that accompanies it.

The Jewish team managed to scrape just enough players together, but this didn't hinder their cheerful and optimistic approach to  the match. They were determined and courageous, but some very skilful play from the Muslim team led to an early goal concession. The Muslims, rallied up by determination to secure the victory, and stacked with rows of subs who shouted encouragement to their fellow team members, impressed with particularly devious play from Moussa Samb (AMM).

The second half showed the Jewish side to be a living testament of resilience. Led and organised by Max Benster (NPTL), they managed to secure some valuable opportunities but despite the abundance of open-goals, they were unable to score. Indeed, the occasional superb save from Sava Seltzer (HWTA), as the last of the Jewish side’s constantly rotating goalkeepers, proved ineffective in minimising the damage from the occasional aggressive runs from the Muslims. So effective were these that two further goals were scored and the match concluded with a Muslim victory.

Both faith classes would really like to thank Imam M. Hussain and Mr Paull, our Muslim and Jewish Faith Tutors, and the class secretaries for organising this unique and diverse event – a true expression of compassion and acceptance – as well as to Dr Keefer for refereeing the match.

Toby Lawson JMG

DATE POSTED: 12 October 2019

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