The dream of being the best in this sport can only be accomplished by beating every other team that came to World Cup Asia (WCA). Since The Hoodlums are targeting to be the best, we had our work cut out for us.
WCA is the most prestigious event there is in Asia where paintball is concerned. We are very fortunate that the WCA 2008 was once again held in Malaysia. Tons of teams from all over Asia compete here and only the best are crowned champions.
It’s been a while since pen touched paper, for that I am truelly sorry for the delay. But there are reasons why The Hoodlums have been taking the back seat for a couple a months...
For the past few months, it’s been hectic and chaos in The Hoodlums Camp. El-kapitano and Vice-cap Albert (JJ), dubbed twin drill sergeants from hell, has ensured no muscle in the teams body will work at the end of their gruelling drills.
On top of that, loads of questions were posed to the team in the last couple of months (I guess this happens to every team). And it got me thinking about a lot of stuff... The ultimate question that got everyone was…
The first time I asked the team this question individually, I got almost the same answer from everyone... “I don’t want to let the team down”… then it struck me...OMG were thinking like a team now!!
Most of the questions that come up in the team are usually really deep questions like, “When is it going to be enough?” or “Are we ever going to stop?” or “Where do we draw the line between pushing ourselves and pushing ourselves too hard?” or “Are we still having fun?” or Why do we play paintball?” and lastly, el-kapitano’s favorite, “which came first the chicken or the egg????” Hehehehe...
It’s not always fun and games in the house of The hoodlums, but we make do with what we have. We may not have the best players in the world but we do compliment each others game play and when we are together... We are strong both on and off the field, a brotherhood that can’t be broken by mere mockery, taunts and ridicule.
Time flies when you’ve got a drill sergeant up your ass and WCA was just days ahead. Time to prove our worth has come and WCA is where we will do that...We arrived in Kuala Lumpur on the 12th November 08. Big eyed, excited, nervous and ready to kill...most of our first day was travelling and locating our apartment. We were housed at the golden city condominiums, which seemed like a million miles from the tournament village. But we had no complaints at all coz it was sponsored… =) This time we got the apartment on the 5th floor which was cool. Once we got settled in we decided for a little “makan”, we found a shop serving bah kut teh right next to the condos and decided to have our dinner there. The bill for our feast that night was ridiculous so ridiculous I don’t even want to mention it here.
Walking the field, the most important part of playing paintball was held on the 13th. It would have been nice if it didn’t RAIN and we didn’t get LOST three times going round Bukit Jalil Stadium!! But then again, it wouldn’t be a hoodlums story if it wasn’t a bit crazy right??
We reach the field eventually all wet, tired and cranky but that was short lived as soon as the team saw the awesomeness of the fields, all tiredness went to hell and we couldn’t wait to walk the field (even though the rain was still pouring like cats and dogs...) But el-kapitano made sure everyone waited for the rain to stop before we walked the field and most importantly to prevent anyone from getting sick(That el-kapitano always think of everything =/ ) .
While waiting for the rain to stop, we decided to see what booths were around... and guess what?? We saw the KCHL booth with Dennis preparing his booth which at that time was still bare. He invited us in and sheltered us from the rain, chit-chatted about the field layout and latest products from DYE... We didn’t want to slow him down because god knows how much busier he’ll get later, so we decided to get out of his way and let him do his work.
The rain finally stopped and without further a due, we ravished the DYE field (Division 3 field) and came up with a couple of strategies off-hand and made a point to bring it up during the team meeting later...
El-kapitano and Manager went to the captains meeting while the rest of the teammates went back and rest. Lulut and Jason ended up going on a quest to get Jason a pair of decent cleats and by “Crom”, it was a quest worthy of Conan the barbarian himself … = )
Team meeting was held on the night before D’ Day where strategies and the occasional fooling around took place... We came up with a few strategies and went to bed early, the toll of walking the field, going on a quest for cleats and discussing strategies all in one day really took the life out of the team...but I doubt anyone had forty winks due to the fact we would be playing in the WORLD CUP ASIA the next day!!!!!!!
Our trusted driver and his van was patiently waiting for us at the condos entrance at 0630am. Everyone was wide awake and ready to kill...
We had 6 games this day and we hoped for the best, the game were as below :
Game 1 (Lost) = Hoodlums vs. Red Sevens (Singapore)
The team was mentally not prepared and everyone was still intimidated by the stature of this event (it’s the freakin’ World Cup Asia!!! How the hell did I make it here??? It’s all el-kapitanos’ fault putting these crazy thoughts in my head, etc,etc,etc…) those were the thoughts going through everyone’s head... Five kills later we lost our first game... The team took it hard, but we knew we were stronger than that. We’ve been in worst situations than this one and we always manage to pull through..
Game 2 (Won) = Hoodlums vs. Jakarta Kingdom,(Indonesia)
The team, hungry to prove themselves ended up playing more aggressively and won this game. The boost of having our first win adulated the team and our performance soared after that game... Then suddenly, there was a blackout and all the games were suspended for two hours (the gods of paintball work in mysterious ways =) )... The team took this opportunity and decided to walk the field again and study what went wrong or how we could conquer the field better. Finally, we came up with a mega-super-duper strategy which later proved to be The Hoodlums best strategy for that field...
Game 3 (Lost) = Hoodlums vs. PPS Syndrome (Malaysia,Sarawak)
The debut of our very own Jason “Gaut” Paujik!!!!! =)... This game didn’t really go as planned, but everyone on the team learned a really good lesson...WATCH YOUR LANE!!!!
Game 4 (Won) = Hoodlums vs. PPS Godfather (Malaysia,Sarawak)
This game was played well, we played smart paintball and the team finally found its’ rhythm... We were back to ourselves fooling around in the tent, making fun of Jason and smiles were everywhere… We were back, and we were a team again…
Game 5 (Won) = Hoodlums vs. PPS Gondol (Malaysia,Sarawak)
Hoodlums dominated this game and played aggressively. On the last move, el-kapitano bunkered two players and the one eliminated player shot him from under el-Kapitanos’ goggles!! He took it straight in his mouth... How’s that for dirty playing???? Some people just don’t have the class and civic mindedness to play the gentlemen game of paintball... Imbeciles... Sad…
Game 6 (Won) = Hoodlums vs. Damnation (Singapore)
This game was played on the LUXE field and it was a new field to every team... Due to the time constraint, we had to play the D1/D2 field. Ironically, this was the exact field layout that we train on back in the mother land (SABAH) thinking that it would be the D3 field for WCA. We played this field well enough to win against the opposing team.
Day 1 - (Friday) FINALLY over and done with...
Losses = 2
Wins = 4
The games took its toll on us, we could barely carry our stuff back to the condo... We hit the Bah Kut Teh shop again… The tab was still ridiculous but no one said anything coz nobody could be bothered, we were too tired.... We hit the sack that night proud of ourselves and with a smirk on our faces... But the thought of tomorrow was silently lurking in everyone’s head.
Once again our trusted driver and his van were patiently waiting for us at the condos entrance at 0730am sharp. Everyone was wide awake and ready to kill (as usual)... We had 5 games this day and we hoped for the best, the games were...
Game 1 (Lost) = Hoodlums vs. Ghost (Malaysia)
We were caught by surprise plus we have this curse of always losing our first game. But that’s just excuses, we were not prepared for them.
Game 2 (Win) = Hoodlums vs. Forsaken (Malaysia)
We played fast, smart and aggressive paintball...This win boosted our spirits to go even more aggressive in the upcoming games we had...
Game 3 (Win) = Hoodlums vs. Gober (Indonesia)
We kept our game plan and dominated them on the field, they gave us a hard time but that’s what being a hoodlum is all about, having fun in hard times and coming on top of the situation as the better team while having fun every time...
Game 4 (Lost) = Hoodlums vs. Romeoz,
After this game everyone was pissed...when we win were really nice guys, when we lose and don’t know why we lost, we get pissed real bad... Everyone was quiet in the tent, no one joked around and no one fooled around. Everyone was thirsty for victory... I pitied whichever team that was going to play us next...
Game 5 (Win) Hoodlums vs. Jesselton NXS (Sabah, Malaysia)
Our fellow statesmen gave us what we needed, a well played game and a lot of shooting. We came on top this time and earned a spot on Sunday...
Day 2 - Done and over with...After 5 grueling games, we qualified for Sunday!!!!!!
Losses = 2
Wins = 3
We owe this to the two supporting ladies that never let us down, managing the teams food and taking good care of us...to Reena AKA Queen B’ and Jenny, without the both of you we wouldn’t have made it to Sunday...
We got home (condo), refreshed ourselves and hit the hotel buffet!!!! Most of us didn’t eat as much due to the fact that we were “walking corpses”. We worked our cute asses off to get this far and we were not done yet... Most of the guys crashed early, they were in bed at 9pm!!!
But some of the guys just couldn’t resist the opportunity that was presented to them...
On cameraman duty = Jojo & Ben (On rotation)
Ben, Lulut, Jojo and JJ = Main cast/extras and star
To view the video, please visit…
Someone once said "action speaks louder then words"....
We ended up sleeping at 1130pm that night... hehe
Good paintball teams dream of playing the Sunday games, the great teams make it to Sunday, the best of the best get crowned champions on that faithful day...
Before I started this article, let me give you a little insider view on how Team Hoodlums were before World Cup Asia...
I have currently gone into my "Zone" i am thinking only about plays and strategies that should be applied on the field. I also have butterflies in my stummy( Stomach & Tummy mixed together) But i love my job. I'm exited for us. This year the team has seen a lot of shit happen in front of their eyes, how everybody has mocked us, called us names, de-graded us, and u guys know much much more. It was not only what was happening outside the team, but we also had a lot of internal issues. It was all down hill for us at that time.... But now look at us, we are still together as tight as ever, Nobody can break up water, and we are water, held tight together. Just look at how Paintball has brought us all together.... I love this Team, I love the Hoodlums! and i would play for no other team competitively except for this team! We have overcome a lot of things together and i think we "DESERVE" to come back "WCA" champions. All of u are playing major roles in this team, without any of u, this team would not happen. Martin this includes u as well. You are part of us and we are taking u with us at heart. Take time to reflect where we came from, how it all started, what we have gone through and u will find a smile upon your face, now wipe that smile off your face and put your game face on! I am proud to say that "Together" we have overcome our greatest fear.... and that greatest fear is "Doubt". Let's make "Sabah" proud....
(A letter from el-kapitano to the Hoodlums)
A few days before the Hoodlums went to the World Cup Asia, el-Kapitano sent this to the team to boost their confidence and make sure that everyone on the team was ready for carnage... Needless to say it worked... We made Sunday right???
Sunday is here and we made it... Once again the Hoodlums made history by being the first Sabah paintball team to go this far... we earned this spot, it wasn’t given to us, we didn’t buy our way through, we made it fair and square, we went through the trenches and prevailed...
Nothing comes easy in house of the Hoodlums, and when we finally made Sunday, we saw the rewards of our training, drills and showing up for practice despite rain or shine.
Scary Sunday... and the Hoodlums are here and ready for more... On Sunday, only 16 out of 24 teams qualified for the second round and we were determined to go further... In the second round we played...
Second Round (Sunday)
Game 1 (Won) = Hoodlums vs. Nightmares (Malaysia),
We broke the curse!!!!!! We won our first game today...this day seems promising doesn’t it? Team Nightmares gave us a run for our money, the game against them wasn’t easy...we had to earn our spot in the quarters.
Game 2 (Lost) = Hoodlums vs. Johor Pirates (Malaysia)
We gave them our all and got some shitty calls...Ben got called for a one for one (Jason got pulled out) and Wonderboy got pulled out for the colour of his tank... what we learn from this is that referees play a really big role in winning or losing a game...and you better play as carefully as you can...
Game 3 (Won) = Hoodlums vs. PPS Headhunters (Malaysia, Sarawak)
We had to win this game to advance into the quarter finals, and we did!! We won this game with four live players...we are going to the quarters....
Quarter Finals... With sweat, paint, blood and pain all over our bodies we made it to the quarters...the question of how much we are worth was about to be answered...are we worthy of a spot in the semi finals??? Can we make the final four cut??? The Quarters went as so...
Quarter Finals (Sunday)
Game 1 (Won) = Hoodlums vs. Dark Angels (Malaysia)
The Dark Angels gave us a hard time, we had to dig deep and play our hearts out that game. In the end we proved we were the better team that day...Major Kudos to Dark angels.
Game 2 (Lost) = Hoodlums vs. D’ Mercy Kids (Malaysia)
This is one of the favorite games of the team, these kids were small targets and freakin’ sharp...we lost to them but even so it was a damn good game...
Game 3 (Won) = Hoodlums vs. Romeoz
We had 1 win and 1 lost in a group of four teams, the USUAL way of going through to the next stage is to win at least two of the three games right??? So we had to win this one...at the end of this game it was a one on one situation with el-kapitano and one of Romeoz player left on the field... el-Kapitano pulled through for the team and won that game for us...but the story doesn’t end there...
Winning two of the three games in the Quarters we thought we secured our spot in the semis, but as it turned out, 3 teams from our group all had two wins each... So the way to settle this is by going to the live body count. We lost our spot in the semis to D’ Mercy Kids by 1 live body count... 1 freakin’ live body count....just 1 live body separated us from our dream...It sucks...It sucks real bad...the feeling was like are we only worth this much???!!! M*&*%$F%^$@R!!!! By the way we were pissed too....=)
The team didn’t take losing in this manner in a good way... We scattered all over, thinking about why we couldn’t take things further... We want this bad, what went wrong... We need this desperately... We trained hard, and sacrificed so much for this... Why did we end up short???? We were measured and found wanting for something bigger than what was destined for us this year...
Jason rounded us all up and told us El-kapitano wanted a word with all of us...
Emotions were running high and tears of disappointment rolled down our face... El-kapitano was lost for words when we huddled up in the mud and took a knee... So the team manager took over from el-kapitano and said...
“Keep your heads up boys, we made an impact today... We’ve gone further than any other Sabah paintball team ever had and we got here by training on tyres and steel drums as bunkers... The other teams are fortunate, they have been playing this field layout with air bunkers for months...months... We came here, we saw, and we conquered most of those teams... Taking fifth place in the WCA??? After all the shit that was served to us??? After all that we’ve been through at home??? Fifth place in Asia??? I’ll proudly take that... I’ll F**kin’ proudly wear that on my chest... So let’s pack our bags, wipe our tears and comeback next year stronger... Now hold your heads up high!!! We are not failures; it’s just not our time yet... I’m proud to call myself a Hoodlum, and so should you”
With all our hands in , we did our battle cry one last time for the WCA 2008...
The path was never a smooth paved road for us. There were times where we nearly didn’t make it. For those who think that it was easy for us, I will boldly tell you that it was not. Many of us had to sacrifice so much prior to the WCA. But, the pressures that burden us the most were doubts of people that suggest, we were just wasting our time.
I have lost count of times where we had train under the rain, covered with mud, trying our very best to make do with what we had.
I have lost count of times where we had to train under the sun, sweating from the blazing heat, pushing our self that little extra drill to not waste a good training day without rain.
And I have lost count of times where we had to bail each other for cash when it comes to training day.
Amazingly, we are just ordinary people, with one common thing in mind. We like to play paintball. Paintball united The Hoodlums and through The Hoodlums, we feel complete.
This journey wouldn’t have been possible if it wasn’t for a few believers of The Hoodlums. We would like to thank…
Dennis from KCHL for our STAKO’s, MYTH’s, DYE gear bags and the priceless advice and support.
POT from Skrimish for the ECLIPSE products and also tolerating us “Kampung Boy’s” with our demands… =)
Reena and Jenny for being such a sport.
Mr. Sport Official from Jabatan Belia dan Sukan Sabah (Mr. Peter Rajah) for being there and finally believing in us.
Ministry of Sports Sabah
Carol (Jason’s wife) for that delicious breakfast.
Andrew from AREA 21...
Gregory for the coverage and beautiful pictures.
Jesselton NXS for the support and pallets.
Zai for our personnel entertainment.. (Classic)
That Indonesian Coach?? For that timeless moment he gave us…
Ah Weng, our very own MM (Malaysian Marshal)
Frederic from ACER Computer
Mervin for the team banner
Jeremy and Julian from Team Gang
Kevin from Team Nightmares
Penampang Paintball Point (PPP)
Kota Kinabalu Paintball Centre (KKPC)
Team 3Nity (SABAH)
Team Infinity (SABAH)
Joe of Dark Angels. We couldn’t put your name on “Daily Express” so, hope this is fine..
Friends of the HOODLUMS..
And most importantly to our families for understanding..