A few weeks ahead of the Champion's League mania, we hosted our annual Channel Cup event, which saw nine teams competing in a 5-a-side football tournament at Crystal Palace's Selhurst Park homeground, all vying to be crowned the winner.
Would early favourites Silver Cloud (last year's champions) walk away with the trophy? How would the rivalry - now in its fourth year - between Sprout IT and Exponential-e's team play out? On the big day, Vonage, The Phone Co-Op, Sprout IT, Natilik, Silver Cloud, Net Premacy, and Blue Saffron all came together to 'channel' their inner Messi.
Natilik's No.10 Omar was the standout player on the day, scoring the most number of goals and coming inches away from hitting the bar in the Cross Bar Challenge. No mean feat from the halfway line into the wind! Silver Cloud came close to another place in the final, but their dreams were snatched away by Natilik.
Clearly enjoying the glorious sunshine, our Head of Channel Alp Kostem stepped up for the Cross Bar Challenge in his linen jacket and Ray-Bans, much to the amusement of the players. A valiant effort,but the general consensus was that he ought to stick to his day job. Once again, Exponential-e's own Eric Ascott took control of the microphone and nimbly guided everyone through the day with matchless witty banter. A weekend radio DJ gig should definitely be on his bucket-list.
In the end though, Vonage were crowned the winners, looking on course for a campaign to rival Liverpool's recent success. We look forward to seeing the team next year as they mount a defence of their title -- no doubt training's already well underway.
Each year we sponsor a different charity. This year, we chose Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH), a globally renowned centre of excellence in child healthcare founded in 1852. Working with the UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health, GOSH forms the UK's only academic Biomedical Research Centre specialising in paediatrics. A clear reminder of how precious life is, we're tremendously proud to have raised £7,500 to help the organisation with their mission to fund research into children's healthcare and to finding new and better ways to treat childhood illnesses.
As the game ended, the Crystal Palace Hospitality Team did not disappoint. Hot showers, cold beer, and solid meal were provided after the tournament. Our Managing Director Mukesh Bavisi wrapped up the day by handing out the well-deserved awards to the teams and, more importantly, the presentation of the cheque to Amy from the amazing GOSH. For die-hards, the evening rolled on atWesthow House pub in Crystal Palace, recounting tales of their sporting prowess and dreaming of playing in the Premiership next Season. No doubt there were some sore limbs and heads the morning after, but it was all worth it for such a successful day.
Thanks to everyone who helped make this happen and for their generous donations to such an important cause. The amazing life-changing operations and treatments GOSH carries out every single day to children is just outstanding. We are delighted to be able to contribute to this and help the many GOSH children patients and their families. Till next year!