Vol. V No. 25 - Saturday June 17, - June 23, 2006
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SPORTS
HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

World Cup fever at Chiang Mai Municipal Stadium

World Cup 2006 fever at Mae Sa Elephant Camp

Chiang Mai Pool League

Chiangmai SportRoundup

World Cup fever at Chiang Mai Municipal Stadium

Nopniwat Krailerg
After four years of waiting, the World Cup 2006 has finally come round again. More than 1,500 million people all over the world have been eagerly awaiting this great sporting festival. Even in Thailand, although the country is not included in the competition, there are thousands of football fans who will be cheering on their favorite teams; such as Brazil, England, Germany, Italy, France, Japan, or other teams that they particularly fancy, as long as they don’t gamble on the results!
Chiang Mai has a giant marquee at Chiang Mai Municipal Stadium, at a cost of more than 10 million baht that can hold more than 3,000 spectators, to broadcast every match from Germany live.

Children who participated in the event painting the French national flag.

World Cup 2006 at True Stadium will broadcast live continually for 32 days using two giant projector screens with Digital Cinemascope System which is an innovation in live sports broadcasting as football fans who barrack for each team will sit on opposite sides. Football fans will dress in their favorite team’s colors or symbols and display their favorite team’s national flag.
There will also be live broadcasting in many other places; such as restaurants and pubs. However, Provincial Police Bureau 5 who are responsible for suppressing gambling in the Upper North has set a procedure for monitoring football gambling in many places and set penalties for any police officers who get involved with football gambling, including instant dismissal. Police have also been informed that there are more than 10 gambling places in Tachilek in Myanmar opposite Mae Sai district, Chiang Rai and they will be keeping an eye out for anyone attending these places.

World Cup Fever in Chiang Mai.

World Cup fever with many products in the shape of footballs.

World Cup 2006 at the True Stadium tent which can hold more than 3,000 people.


World Cup 2006 fever at Mae Sa Elephant Camp

Baby elephants decorated with football teams’ national flags for the World Cup.

Saksit Meesubkwang
World Cup fever started early on June 9 at Mae Sa Elephant Camp, Mae Rim district, Chiang Mai, with an activity to welcome the World Cup 2006. This was an opportunity to welcome the tourists who visit Maesa Elephant Camp and hope they will be amused by the national flags of the competing countries that have been painted on the elephants’ cheeks.
Anchalee Kalmaphichit, operation director of Mae Sa Elephant Camp said that this year at Mae Sa Elephant Camp, 8 baby elephants have been painted with the national flags of Germany, the World Cup 2006’s host, as well as those of Brazil, Spain and Italy in order to promote the sport and create a World Cup atmosphere for foreign tourists during this festival of football. Football is one of elephants’ favorite activities with the special feature that young elephants love to kick a special-sized ball into the goal in different ways such as front leg or rear leg with another elephant as a goalkeeper.


Chiang Mai Pool League: Start your Everest climb from Chiang Mai

Pat Black
If you ask which mountain is the highest in the world, most people answer, Everest, and they’re wrong. At 33,465 feet, Mauna Kea near Hawaii stretches 4,436 feet taller than Everest, but only 41 percent of it rises above sea level.
So, while Everest in the Himalayas proves to be the highest and most challenging climb on earth, with its rapidly changing weather conditions, avalanches and crevasses, it’s downright impossible to swim to the bottom of Mauna Kea.
Once known as Chomolungma in Tibet, Sagarmatha in Nepal and Peak XV in western countries, Mount Everest was officially named after the British Surveyor General, Sir George Everest, in 1865. Attempts to scale the peak started 56 years later, but who reached the top first remains a mystery.
In a 1924 ascent, British climbers George Mallory and Andrew Irvine disappeared in bad weather and never returned. Mallory’s body was found 75 years later only 2,000 feet from the summit and speculation remains as to whether he was still on his way up or coming down.
In the meantime, Sir Edmund Hillary officially conquered the mountain in 1953 and Mallory’s grandson ญ another George ญ succeeded in 1995.
Since Mallory’s fatal attempt, around 1,000 people from some twenty countries have climbed on Everest, with more than 150 of them losing their lives. Despite the 6 to 1 odds on survival, climbing the mountain has become somewhat commercialized, with controversial guided tours open to any physically fit person possessing US$65,000 to pay for one.
Hence, an accumulation of discarded equipment and human waste amounted to an estimated 600 tons of garbage up to last year, but a Chinese team has begun cleaning operations in readiness for the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.
Some people say that the mountains of Chiang Mai are the foothills of the Himalayas, and while not as majestic as the giants further north, they offer challenging rock faces that are much cheaper to climb.
Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures provides first class tuition and a guide service, where beginners can clamber about on an indoor boulder wall before getting to grips with the real thing. When faced with vertical cliffs and overhangs, a team of fully qualified instructors is on hand to ensure maximum safety measures.
Co owned by Thai national climbing champion, Khaetthaleeya Uppakham and Josh Morris from America, this professionally run outfit organizes more than a dozen different instruction courses with all the necessary equipment supplied.
There’s a lot more to climbing than just knowing what to wear and finding cracks to place your fingers and feet. Knowledge of ropes and the ways to knot them is essential, never mind the use of chalk, clips, climbing jargon and how to secure a harness. Bending and stretching demands a certain level of fitness, especially in the fingers, joints and toes, and determination helps to build on physical strength.
One day programs at Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures range from introductory to advanced and cost between B. 1,800 and B. 3,500. Courses spread over two, three and five days are priced at B. 6,800 (self rescue), B. 6,600 and B. 11,500, respectively, and custom designed tuition is negotiable.
All equipment, transportation and lunch are provided and for more information visit www.thailandclimbing.com or ring 053 207 102.
Nature carved a lifelike horse’s head in the limestone on top of the Crazy Horse Buttress. This outcrop of weirdly shaped rock faces - streaked in black, orange and yellow - stands 70 metres tall in the picturesque Mae On valley about 35 kilometres from Chiang Mai.
Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures has mapped out over 150 climbing routes there, and I joined a multinational party of nine, who were determined to use some of them in conquering Thailand’s newest international climbing destination.
Finnish tourists, Adrian and Riikka, told how much they enjoyed climbing as an individual sport that demanded physical strength and intense concentration. Brits, Richard and Paul agreed, and when we arrived at the Crazy Horse these seasoned climbers prepared their ascent from the more challenging routes without supervision.
But for Singaporeans, Xavier, Lee and Ruek, climbing was a relatively new experience, which called for the help of skilled instructors like Thomas from Switzerland and our local man, Sorn. It was amazing to see how quickly the students learned ญ from tying knots to clawing their way up vertical slices of rock inside a day ญ egged on by the rest of the group.
As an alternative to climbing up Crazy Horse, our intrepid trio from Singapore ended their encounter by rappelling down 55 meters into a cave full of stalagmites, stalactites and dramatic rock formations.
After eight climbing hours, it was difficult to prise our seven mountaineers away from the precipice. Climbing is clearly obsessive and when the elder Mallory said that he wanted to scale Everest simply because it was there, I now understanding what he meant.



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