Volleyball Tournament Raises More Than $10,000 for Tsunami Relief
The Atlanta chapter of Sewa International USA organized a charity Volleyball Tournament on the weekend of Feb 12-13, 2005 at the Fitness Center of Mercer University, Chamblee. The event, marked to raise funds for the relief and rehabilitation of the Tsunami victims, raised more than $10,000 with 16 teams participating from the states of Georgia, Alabama and Tennessee. The winners were team Big Hammer, a student team from Georgia Tech with the Gujarati Samaj (led by Tarun Patel) and Mahatma Gandhi (led by Dominic Savio) teams as the first and second runners-up respectively.
The event began on Feb 12 in the morning with Mr Ramesh Maturu, Director of Pyramid Consulting Inc and chief guest at the inaugural function congratulating the organizers and expressing delight at being associated with the cause as one of the sponsors. The tournament soon got underway with round-robin matches between the different teams divided into pools of four teams each. The top two teams in each pool moved into the following knockout, quarter-final round.
The semifinals saw Team Big Hammer ousting the Atlanta Spikers (led by Nagadhar Thota) relatively easily and Gujarati Samaj coming good against Mahatma Gandhi in a tough contest. The finals saw Gujarati Samaj rising well to the occasion against Big Hammer's big hitting. With a strong defense line-up against, by far, the best spikers in the tournament, Gujarati Samaj won a few accolades from the crowd. The absence of a big and effective spiker undid the team though Shreyas Patel came up with a few brilliant spikes and blocks. The final scores of 25-20, 25-19 do not make justice to Gujarati Samaj's efforts.
However, the most closely fought contest was the one for the second runners-up trophy between the Atlanta Spikers and Mahatma Gandhi. In a highly volatile atmosphere both teams put their best performance in the tournament particularly the Atlanta Spikers. In their previous encounter in the preliminary round, Mahatma Gandhi had made mincemeat of the Spikers with a scoreline of 15-1. The rejuvenated Spikers came back as a confident team and took the match to the third and deciding game before caving in due to fatigue. The scores of the match read 25-15, 18-25, 25-12.
The chief guests for the prize distribution ceremony Kris Gadde, CEO, Allied Informatics and Amit Shah, Board member, Gujarati Samaj congratulated the winners and the other teams for the positive spirit with which they participated. The event had a total of 15 sponsors including Allied Info, ObjectNet Tech, Semafor Tech, Omnisoft, Anid Infosoft, Charter Global, Delta Infosys, AtlantaDesi.com, Global Mall, Softpath, Sai Chat, Amar Jawan Jyoti, Mercer University and Blimpies.
Sewa International USA is a tax-exempt, 501c(3), non-profit organization based in Duluth, GA It supports the global Sewa International movement (www.SewaUSA.org)
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