Annual Spring Basketball Tournament Unites Cypriot Children

 

Over 150 Greek-Cypriot and Turkish-Cypriot children at the PPI-Cyprus Spring Basketball Tournament in Kyrenia

Over 150 Greek-Cypriot and Turkish-Cypriot children at the PPI-Cyprus Spring Basketball Tournament in Kyrenia

PPI-CY Fellow Ryan Hage gives his personal account of PeacePlayers-Cyprus 3vs3 Tournament at English School of Kyrenia this past weekend.

This past Saturday, May 3rd, PeacePlayers’ annual 3vs3 Tourney was held at the English School of Kyrenia and was a huge success. We had over 150 kids turn out for the big event as well as parents and family members to root on their young players.

Ambassador Koenig handing out medals to the Senior Boys Champions

Ambassador Koenig handing out medals to the Senior Boys Champions

This was my first big tournament as a Fellow and I was nervous to see what type of turnout we would get and see how such a big event would go throughout the day. Once again, the coaches and kids created an atmosphere that was both fun and competitive. Kids from ages 8 to 17 years old competed during the day on mixed teams with participants from both the Turkish-Cypriot and Greek-Cypriot communities.

Creating the teams and then seeing kids who have never met before play together competitively was a great sight to see. One could see a relationship forming just because of their common goal to win the tournament. It was amazing to see the sportsmanship and camaraderie between all of the teams.

The event was only possible by the generosity from all involved, but especially the English School of Kyrenia and the United States Embassy. We were lucky enough to be accompanied by many of the head staff of the English School of Kyrenia and even the United States Ambassador himself, John Koenig, who tweeted about us from the event! To have such generous supporters in attendance was special for the kids and coaches alike.

I am always surprised in the best way possible in how each event hosted by PeacePlayers is a success because of the amazing participants that we have from both sides. Every player is willing to work together while making a new friend in the process.

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