By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Matthew Riggs
REPUBLIC OF SINGAPORE (June 26, 2014) – Sailors from the U.S. Navy’s forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS George Washington (CVN 73) participated in a friendly soccer game with Singapore nationals, June 26.
The game was aimed to build international trust and community relationships between the U.S. and Singapore.
“Today’s game was not a competition necessarily, rather just to have some fun, build our relations and get to know our friends in Singapore,” said Aerographer’s Mate 2nd Class Takeo Wadriski, captain of the George Washington team. “It’s a cool experience to face off with international teams, and to meet and mesh with some of the locals here.
The Singaporean team was comprised of members of the Singapore Indian Sports Association (SISA), a group of locals whom are enthusiastic about playing.
“Football is very popular in Singapore,” said Bob Lim, a SISA team member. “We love every chance we get to play it, especially against an aircraft carrier. Sometimes it’s the same people, and sometimes we see new faces. It’s all very fun.”
A sport was chosen as the event of the day due to its world-wide recognition and its simplicity to organize and play.
“Through the sport of football, soccer to us Americans, we can come together as players and people. It’s a simple game that everyone understands and most people love,” said Wadriski.
Relationship building exercises, such as the one today, build trust, cooperation and friendly attitudes towards the Navy.
“It’s a good way to meet new people and make new friends,” said Kimi Kramzer, a member of Singapore Indian Sports Association. “We love it when we get to play with our friends from the U.S.”
In the end, both sides tried their hardest but George Washington was defeated 0 -1.
“In the end, we have a lot more respect for each other,” said Wadriski. “It’s inspiring to see how a different country can work together as a team to play as hard as they did and for us to do the same.”