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Thailand Futsal: Phuket pearl anchored by Thai Port – VIDEO

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Thailand Futsal: Phuket pearl anchored by Thai Port – VIDEO | The Thaiger
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PHUKET: The Pearl of the Andaman, Phuket United, succumbed 2-3 to a stronger Thai Port Futsal Club on Saturday night in Phuket Town.

The match, Phuket’s 22nd and Thai Port’s 23rd in the 30-fixture GMM Thailand Futsal Premier League (TFPL) 2012-2013 season, was played in front of about 800 fans at the Saphan Hin Indoor Sports Complex.

Thai Port – owned by the Port Authority of Thailand – broke the ice early on with a goal in the first minute by Brazilian veteran Thiago Mora de Oleveira.

After that, it was mostly Phuket who controlled possession, ever determined to find the equalizer.

That goal finally came in the 17th minute with a beautiful strike from the top right of the area by Phuket’s leading scorer, Jackson Santos.

The score remained 1-1 going into half time.

The visitors took the lead again 7 minutes into the second half with a goal by Thanapon Wongsam-aang.

Phuket equalized again five minutes later with another beautiful strike by Santos from the right side, scoring his 25th for the team this season.

The two goals put Santos in 3rd place for the league’s golden boot race. Santos trails Navy’s Jesada Chudet (28) and Si Saket’s Brazilian star Romualdo Namorato (31).

With the score level at 2-2, Phuket picked up the offensive pressure, and Thai Port’s defense started to show signs of weakness.

However, Thai Port’s keeper Prakit Daan-khunthot took everything that came his way, and did not make any mistakes.

In the 37th minute, Thai Port sealed the game on a quick counter attack after Worin Romnee capitalized on a loose ball mid court, catching Phuket’s keeper Parinya Pandee out of position and sending the ball to the back of the net.

Despite a commendable power play attempt, Phuket were not able to equalize for a third time.

After the match, Thai Port Thai veteran Wutichai Thin-tawee told the Phuket Gazette that his side were quite pleased with the result.

“We played to our plan, and that was to play strong defense… In the second half of the season, we lost a lot of our good players who went to teams like Chonburi and Phuket [referring to Piyapan Rattana]] so we’ve just been working on getting our new players to get used to the team.”

Another Thai Port veteran, their only foreigner, Thiago Mora de Oleveira also talked to the Gazette after the match.

“This season has been a lot harder than previous seasons due to the hectic scheduling of up to three league games a week, not to mention our tough FA Cup schedule. We were tired from the trip to Phuket, and I was also worried because Phuket has three Brazilians.

“While I often knew which tactics they were using, a lot of my team mates didn’t, so it was difficult to adjust. In the end we did okay.”

Thiago, who first came to Thailand to play 11-a-side football is playing his fourth season for Thai Port Futsal Club.

Phuket’s star Brazilian Jackson Santos also spoke to the Gazette after the match.

“Although I’m having a really good season with 25 goals, I’m not so satisfied because our team has not been doing so well. We’ve been real tired from travel and working hard but have a lot to improve on if we are going to meet our goal of finishing in the top five of the league,” he said.

Phuket remain in 10th place with 30 points from 10 wins, 12 losses and a goal difference of +2.

Thai Port retained their 2nd place standing with 49 points, trailing runaway table toppers, Chonburi by 9 points (Chonburi still have two games in hand).

Phuket have eight more games this season to meet their goal of finishing in the top 5.

Their next two matches this week will be on the road, starting this Wednesday, when they will play 13th placed Samut Sakhon.

With a 4pm kickoff, the match will be played at Bang Khun Thien, just to the west of the capital.

Following that match, Phuket will stay in Bangkok to play 11th placed Samut Songkhram on Sunday (March 24) at the Fashion Island Futsal Arena with a 12pm kick off.

Phuket return home to play 6th placed Nonthaburi on Wednesday, February 27, after which they will take on 5th placed Surat Thani on Saturday, March 2, also at home with a 7pm kickoff

Other TFPL Results this weekend:

  • Leo Bang Seu 2-7 Samut Sakhon
  • CAT FC 4-3 Samut Songkhram
  • Navy 1-3 Surat Thani
  • Lampang Utd 1-3 Nonthaburi
  • Si Saket 7-2 Prachinburi
  • Chonburi 6-2 Highways Dept
  • Samut Prakarn 3-5 Bangkok

— 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.

Phuket

Phuket’s annual vegetarian festival gets the green light – VIDEO

Caitlin Ashworth

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Phuket’s annual vegetarian festival gets the green light – VIDEO | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Caitlin Ashworth

WARNING: The content below contains photos and videos of self-mutilation that some may find disturbing.

Somehow Phuket’s annual vegetarian festival is to go ahead next month, but officials say they will ask participants to strictly observe social distancing. Good luck with that! For those who don’t know, the festival isn’t exactly known for the food. It’s known for blood, body mutilation and more blood.

During street processions for the weeklong event, also known as the Nine Gods Festival, so called “mah songs” are known to practice self-mutilation and are said to enter a trance-like state, channeling spirits through their body. “Mah” means horse in Thai, and many suggest the mah song acts like a horse for the spirit to ride.

Many mah songs pierce their checks, ears and lips, some with large swords and thick needles. Some slice their tongues continuously for hours, blood dripping down on the street. Others appear to be in a trace walk barefoot as firecrackers explode on the ground.

Mah songs march down Phuket’s streets for hours with a team of devotees to help tend to their wounds, adjust the piercings, wipe away drool and blood, and keep them hydrated. It’s understood that devotees wear white as a symbol of purity. It’s also reported that they abstain from eating meat, drinking alcohol and having sex during the weeklong festival.

It seems gruesome, but it’s actually very spiritual. Business owners and locals line the street, some setting up altars. Mah songs stop at each one and do a quick ritual. Some mah songs carry a black flag, waving it over onlookers who bow their heads and place their hands in the “wai” position. Some spend time blessing the elderly and handing out bracelets to children. During a procession last year, a woman held up a bracelet as said “the ‘Spirit’ gave this to my mother.”

This year, the festival will have to be a little different to abide by coronavirus prevention measures. The Bangkok Post says it’s the first festival since the outbreak. The head festival organiser Prasert Fukthongphol says “we will seriously enforce social distancing measures and require all participants to wear face masks.”

The grotesque piercings, noisy parades and visits to the shrine, are good news for Phuket’s tourism and bad news if you’re a vegetable. Many adherents to the Chinese-heritage local festival will go without sex, alcohol and meat for the week of so of the festival. The week of events and ceremonies hopes to scare away the bad gods again but, especially this year, attract some extra visitors to the festival.

Another Vegetarian Festival in Chon Buri has also been given the green light. The event is planned for October 16 to the 26. This year’s main event for the festival will be in Naklua at Sawangboriboon Thammasathan Foundation at the Sein Sua Chinese Temple, but many other events will be around the city throughout the week.

Phuket's annual vegetarian festival gets the green light - VIDEO | News by The Thaiger

Phuket's annual vegetarian festival gets the green light - VIDEO | News by The Thaiger

Phuket's annual vegetarian festival gets the green light - VIDEO | News by The Thaiger

Phuket's annual vegetarian festival gets the green light - VIDEO | News by The Thaiger

Phuket's annual vegetarian festival gets the green light - VIDEO | News by The Thaiger

SOURCES: Bangkok Post | Pattaya News

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Phuket

Officials says no illegal land encroachment at Phuket’s Sri Panwa resort

Maya Taylor

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Officials says no illegal land encroachment at Phuket’s Sri Panwa resort | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Sri Panwa Phuket Resort - Sri Panwa Phuket

After coming in for some negative online attention recently, the land title deeds of the Sri Panwa Phuket resort have been investigated and found “to be in order”. The 5-star hotel first attracted the attention of netizens when its owner, Vorasit Issara, publicly criticised anti-government activist Panusaya Sithijirawattanakul, calling for her arrest. He also claimed she wasn’t Thai, a factually wrong and inflammatory statement.

His Instagram tirade prompted outrage from those who support the current protest movement, with netizens calling for a boycott of his property and leaving several negative comments on various review sites. Trip Advisor suspended the hotel’s account due to the online attack.

Shortly after, the Civil Society for State Welfare called on the Social Security Office to clarify its investment in the resort’s trust fund. This was echoed by at least one opposition MP and anti-corruption activists.

Responding to the land rights issue, the Phuket Land Office has issued a statement to say the hotel does not occupy state land. The resort stands on 56 rai of prime real estate, overlooking Phuket’s south-eastern coast. The land office has confirmed its paperwork is all in order.

Meanwhile, it’s understood Charn Issara Development, owners of the property, have threatened to sue the resort’s critics for defamation.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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Economy

70% of Phuket’s tourism businesses are closed, many for good

Caitlin Ashworth

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70% of Phuket’s tourism businesses are closed, many for good | The Thaiger
FILE PHOTO

Most tourism businesses in Phuket have closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and they probably won’t be up and running again until foreign tourists are let back in Thailand. Phuket Governor Narong Woonciew says around 70% of tourism businesses have closed, most of them just temporarily, but some have shut down permanently. But the statistics are not quite that simple, with the east side of the island, largely inhabited by locals with the central business district of Phuket Town and some of the more popular expat towns, doing far better than the tourist magnets of the west coast. The Thaiger estimates that on the west coast the number would exceed 90%.

Before the pandemic, tourism to Phuket brought in 450 billion baht a year with 400 billion baht from foreign visitors while the other 50 billion baht was from domestic tourists. Thailand has been trying to increase domestic tourism to help revive the industry after the pandemic. Phuket’s governor says it helps, but not enough.

“Their visits can help solve some of our economic problems, but they cannot replace the need of foreign tourists.”

66.8% of tourism businesses in Phuket have closed temporarily while 2.8% have closed permanently, according to data by the Digital Economy Promotion Agency. (Again the percentage along the west coast is MUCH higher – just take a drive through Paton, Kat, Karon). Phuket’s governor is trying figure out how to recover the economy. And fast.

“By the end of September, the number of businesses to be closed will increase up to 70% for sure.”

While many businesses are closed, the governor says Phuket is “almost 100% ready to welcome foreign tourists.” The governor says he can’t give an answer to when foreign tourists will arrive in Phuket, but he claims they’ve “prepared every step,” from checking in at the airport to hotel quarantine. They’re just going to install some new temperature check machines at the Phuket International Airport and review the procedures for welcoming the tourists.

“We have to work and prepare carefully to welcome foreign tourists… We have to gradually open our door to welcome small groups of people first, in order to test our system, and then open for bigger groups.”

At the moment, only 3 venues in Phuket have been approved to operate as alternative state quarantine facilities. Anantara Phuket Suites & Villas has 100 rooms available, Anantara Mai Khao Phuket has 36 villas and Trisara resort has 15 villas. All are 5 star venues with a commensurate 5 star cost.

SOURCE: Phuket News

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