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Phuket United ready for home-debut tonight against Bangkok Futsal Club

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Phuket United ready for home-debut tonight against Bangkok Futsal Club | Thaiger

PHUKET: The island’s pro futsal team, Phuket United are set to play their inaugural home match in the GMM Sport Thailand Futsal Premier League (TFPL), tonight against Bangkok Futsal Club.

The match will be played at Phuket Town’s brand new, 4,000-seat Indoor Sports Complex in Saphan Hin with a 7pm kickoff.

It will be the third fixture of the TFPL 2012-2013 season, and Phuket currently sit in sixth place after losing their opening match 2-1 to Highways Department, and winning their last match, 3-0 on Wednesday in Samut Prakarn.

The Andaman Pearl’s next opponents, Bangkok, are currently in 2nd place of the 16-team league after winning both of their opening matches – against Lampang United 3-1, and then 6-1 over Samut Sakhon.

Ahead of tonight’s match up, Phuket’s new Brazilian signing, Jackson Santos, told the Gazette: “Bangkok looks like a good team, but we have the home advantage. It will be a tough game, and we will concentrate and focus on the goal, which is to win.”

Also speaking to the Gazette last night at the team’s training session, Phuket’s returning Brazilian star, Rogerio Moreira, who said, “We have been working hard, and it is very important for us to win at home.”

Asked about how he felt returning to Phuket, Moreira was a bit down, replying that he dearly misses his wife, children and family in Brazil.

“It’s very torturing for me to be away from my family like this. They were supposed to join me right now, but we still have not settled such matters with the team, which is frustrating.” he said

“Either way, I will concentrate on winning the match tonight, and then talk to the team president afterwards… ”

Rogerio was an integral part of Phuket’s promotion campaign last year.

The 29-year-old was named Most Valuable Player of the CAT Championship national futsal tournament, in which Phuket were crowned both Southern region and National champions, which thus granted the team its first ever berth in the elite Thailand Futsal Premier League.

Despite subsequently getting the backing of former Phuket Governor Tri Augaradacha, who vowed to help the team by all means, since they had ‘created a sporting reputation for the province’, the team faces new hurdles this year.

Club Director Samak Rattanadilok Na Phuket told the Gazette: “Some officials at the city municipality have not not been the most cooperative and supportive with us about using the new facility.

“They still have misunderstandings about the sport and don’t want us to use the court because they said our shoes will damage the floor… Yet, they did not pose this problem for basketball, volleyball, or any of the indoor sports, including futsal, played in the sports complex at this year’s National Youth Games, for example.”

“We have gotten clearance for this initial game, but still need to inform and convince those officials that futsal is like every other indoor sport and that it won’t damage the floor.

“We have proposed to take them [the uninformed officials]on an all expenses-paid tour to see other futsal facilities around the country that use the same type of floor without any problems.

“And if they still don’t cooperate, we’ll be forced to invest in a special kind of matting which would cost us two million baht. This will be an unnecessary expense.”

Mr Samak added that the team had to spend nearly 100,000 baht just rent the facility for tonight’s game.

“This includes the facility rental fee, electricity use and wages of facility staff. We have to sell 1,000 tickets per game just to break even.

“This, of course does not take into account monthly salaries for our players and staff, which is about 700,000 baht. Sponsorship is the only way we can survive,” he added.

Tickets for tonight’s match are only 100 baht, while team shirts will be available for 690 baht.

If you’re in town, the Gazette extends the invitation to come out and support the home team in their Thailand elite league home debut.

Other TFPL matches this weekend:

Saturday, November 24

  • Leo Bang Sue vs Samut Prakarn
  • Samut Songkhram vs Surat Thani
  • Samut Sakhon vs Prachin FC
  • Lampang Utd vs Sri Sa Ket

Sunday, November 25

  • Nonthaburi vs Highways Dep
  • CAT FC vs Chonburi
  • Navy vs Thai Port

— Steven Layne

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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Pattaya, Phuket and Hua Hin brace for increased restrictions

Tim Newton

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Pattaya, Phuket and Hua Hin brace for increased restrictions | Thaiger

Three of Thailand’s biggest expat areas are seeing sharp rises in new infections, partly from pre-Songkran traffic. The Songkran holidays, now officially over (but will see many people taking today off and making a weekend Songkran extension), and the government says they are expecting to see a rise in the cases numbers reported in the popular holiday locations.

Chon Buri Public Health office says they now have a total of 910 infections since April 1. They have 103 new cases in the past 24 hours. Most new cases are in Bang Lamung district which includes Pattaya City with 47, Siracha with 12) & Chon buri City with 8.

Pattaya, Phuket and Hua Hin brace for increased restrictions | News by Thaiger

Meanwhile Phuket has a total of 142 infections recorded on the island with the Governor still insisting there will be no need for a lockdown. Here’s a breakdown of the areas and the numbers of recorded infections so far (below).

Governor Narong announced that the Phuket Infectious Disease Control Committee won’t be implementing an official lockdown, but will “strictly raise the intensity of public health measures to counter the spread of Covid-19″.

“Everyone should wear a face mask, maintain social distancing, wash their hands frequently and install the Mor Chana app (available for free from App Store and Google Play Store).”

A meeting of the CCSA, chaired by PM Prayut Chan-o-cha is expected to upgrade restrictions in red zone areas around the country, which includes Phuket and Pattaya. Read more about the latest red and orange zones HERE.

Pattaya, Phuket and Hua Hin brace for increased restrictions | News by Thaiger

For Hua Hin expats, there’s been 100 new Covid-19 infections announced in Prachuap Khiri Khan in the past 24 hours, 75 cases from Hua Hin. This takes the total in the province since April 1 to 625. Hua Hin accounts for nearly 90% of the district’s total cases.

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Transport

Footbridges stop luxury yacht travelling from Phuket to Samui

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Footbridges stop luxury yacht travelling from Phuket to Samui | Thaiger
PHOTO: Thailand's version of the Suez Canal blockage.

Footbridges in Phuket stood in the way of a luxury yacht travelling from its home in Phuket to Koh Samui when the boat was too tall to pass. Police received a call around 8 pm last night from the truck driver after his trailer carrying the yacht had trouble getting under one of several bridges for walkers to pass over the highway. The boat was travelling down Thepkrasattri Road, where it was stopped by the bridge near Baan Tha Reua School. The boat also had trouble at the pedestrian bridge at the Provincial Electricity Authority Thalang Branch and the bridge at Baan Lipon School in Srisoonthorn.

All the bridges were supposed to have a 5-metre clearance, though one observer speculated that all the repaving of the road over the years may have raised the road and lowered the clearance. Traffic police responded to the first bridge incident by sending officers to direct traffic and make sure bikes and cars didn’t pass and impeded progress on freeing the boat. The second incident about 30 minutes later was resolved by letting air out of the truck’s tires to lower it just enough to pass under the bridge. The third snag prompted the driver to go in person to the Thalang Police station to request help yet again.

This time police were less amused and suggested the truck driver try to resolve the issue himself and call back to the police only if he was unable to free the luxury yacht. A traffic police officer went to follow up with the stranded boat at the end of his shift and found the driver had given up and decided to return the yacht to its Phuket origin at Boat Lagoon Marina in Koh Kaew. The boat, now damaged from the bridge bumps, wasn’t going to make it to Surat Thani to be sailed to Koh Samui on this journey. The boat radar had broken off on one of the bridges. No word on any major damage to the pedestrian bridges.

SOURCE: The Phuket News

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Hotel blog suggests Phuket should push ahead with July reopening despite Covid surge

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Hotel blog suggests Phuket should push ahead with July reopening despite Covid surge | Thaiger
PHOTO: Hotels and other tourism business are hoping the July 1st reopening goal can still be achieved.

A hotel information blog is claiming that, despite growing Covid-19 numbers, Phuket should stick to its schedule in reopening to travellers without quarantine in July. That’s only 2 and a half months away.

In an interview with the Director of Travel and Tourism Consulting at GlobalData, they stressed that while it is crucial to rein in the spread of Covid-19 and the B117 strain now menacing Thailand, the risk must not overshadow the need to push forward with vaccinations and the march towards eliminating the quarantine by July in order to save the tourism industry and all those dependent on it.

“The Phuket pilot program is essential in creating a path towards economic recovery for Thailand, a country heavily dependent on tourism. More than 17% of Thailand’s gross domestic product is attributed to tourism and the Covid-19 pandemic has lead to the worst economic free-fall in over 20 years”

The blog acknowledges the inherent risk and possible appearance of foolishness to prioritise the plans to reopen and carry on with the same rollout schedule. But they urge Thai authorities to consider that July 1 is still 2 and a half months away, leaving ample time to recover and make progress towards the approaching Phuket reopening. A vital aspect of the reopening plan lies in vaccinating over 70% of Phuket’s provincial residents, a sizable task, but one that brings great benefit with or without the scheduled reopening.

“Pushing ahead to achieve this goal puts Phuket on track to welcome back tourists, perhaps in a “bio-bubble”, and restart the economy. The economy is desperate with household debt growing, pushing the government to enact emergency decrees to provide relief. These households need the return of tourism and the influx of cash international tourists will bring.”

The blog hopes that Thai authorities can balance the necessary Covid-19 safety measures in Phuket to protect the Thai population with the economic need to bring back tourism. They believe that with sufficient measures in place, vaccinated locals could welcome vaccinated international tourists back to Phuket reopening safely in July.

SOURCE: Hotel News Resource

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