Brunei startup Respin Alpha will be launching their gamified football platform Super Squad (SS) in Sabah next month with the Super Borneo Championship 2019.
The championship will be open to any resident or visitor in Brunei or Sabah to drop in and play football and futsal matches at the JKR Sports Complex and International School Brunei in Brunei and Tun Adnan Sports Complex in Sabah from October to December.
Respin’s founder Faezal Murni said SS was created to enable people to play football recreationally without having join teams or book venues on their own. In under 12 months, SS has registered more than 3,500 players and hosted over 1,000 games.
“Part of the challenge in playing football (outside your local leagues) – especially as you get older (after leaving school) – is that it can be hard not only to find a full team of friends to play with but to find a team to play against,” he said at a press conference last week to announce the new championship.
“On top of that, it can be hard to book a full-sized venue for your matches. With SS you only need to sign up online, pay a small fee (B$3.50 for individual games, as low as B$20 for 50 games) and you’re guaranteed to have people to play with.”
SS’ platform eschews the traditional football and futsal format in the number of players, match length and tracking of points.
The football matches are eight-a-side, while futsal matches are five-a-side. Each match is a continuous 20 minutes. Currently, the winners of each season or championship are individual players who rack up the most points by scoring, assisting, defending or being part of a winning team.
“Since SS is a ‘drop in’ platform where you just sign up and play, the teams are always rotating, and the matches are held six days a week,” Faezal explained.
“Therefore the winners of each season are those (players) that can rack up the most total points (across any number of matches) in separate categories including top striker, top goalkeeper, top player… which everyone can keep a track of through our online leaderboard on our website.”
Director of Tourism Malaysia’s Brunei office Hj Ibrahim Seddiqi Talib added that SS would help boost sports tourism and help players to strike up friendships while traveling.
“Since SS games are open to anyone in that particular location, you can bring together people from all walks of life to enjoy a game together and experience different (venue) facilities,” he said. “I hope to see it more states in Malaysia and ASEAN countries.”
Faezal added that championship’s top performers and lucky draw winners would be awarded flight tickets and hotel stays in Malaysian states including Kuala Lumpur, Sabah and Sarawak.