Today for our section on Phoenix People, we will meet Andrew Meli, one of the original players for the Handball Men team. Andrew has been through the good and bad times and I’m sure he has a lot to say about that. Let’s meet Andrew
How long have you been involved in handball?
I was introduced to handball at secondary school. I think I have been involved in the game as a player give or take ten years.
What is your biggest success and let down in your sports?
This episode goes back a few years, but one of my most memorable handball experiences was a tournament called Youthfest. The final was a decider between St. Aloysius and De La Salle. The level of competition and rivalry was intense and apart from ending up winners of the tournament I was fortunate enough to share this experience with a number of players who are still in my team today. This led to a friendship which goes beyond the court. We still mention that competition every now and then …… and this didn’t take place recently
With let downs, I think it was a result to the choices I personally took. A career path I chose led to me putting sport aside for a number of years and i must say that it is something I regret. If I can go back in time it would be one of the areas I would rectify.
What are the biggest problems facing handball in Malta?
I think the lack of popularity of our sport is the main problem. The school I attended was fortunate enough to have a handball player as a PE teacher and a sportsmaster who also loved the game. Their education and skills were passed on with a very enthusiastic level. Many prominent players from my generation in Division 1 today are all a result of these virtues. Schools which have the luxury of selection don’t face as much problems as small clubs like us. Unfortunately it is harder for small clubs still being established.
What is your current position with Phoenix SC? What are your main responsibilities?
I am currently a participating club member from the handball section.
How long have you been a member of Phoenix SC?
I have been a member since the club first originated.
What is a memorable moment you associate with your tenure at Phoenix SC?
I have a whole archive of memorable moments with this club, I fear if I start my answer will be too long . These range from moments on court, friendship and on a personal level. An on court memory must be the runners up position we achieved during our second year of play. Winning is a sensation like no other hehe. My favourite memory which I currently live is the sense of belonging the club instills and promotes. Phoenix SC allowed me to get back into the sport I love, renew friendships with old team mates, and led me to meet and make new friends, a healthier lifestyle through training and hard work and not forgetting EDUCATION. This is the package which come along with our club,
What is a short term goal that you plan to achieve with Phoenix SC this year?
My short term goal is to become a better player. Listen to my coaches, do my part for the team, develop skills and to better my club.
Which song you listen to before a game?
I don’t really listen to music to boost me, I am more the reserved type on game day! You will not find me chanting verses from the movie 300 or kicking people into big black holes
However I try prepare myself mentally from the day before by watching my favourite four handball clips featuring players I look up to.
Where do you see yourself vis-a-vis Phoenix SC in the next few years?
I intend to keep playing as much as I physically can and maybe leave my mark on the team and learning how to be a coach maybe?
Any last comment?
I urge people to give handball a try especially and to join our club!
I love Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups!