Allen Paul, from the Philippines to Futnet

Remember, the Futnet Story chapter 1… We were talking about Sepak Takraw as the cousin of Futnet.
Today, Sepak Takraw is joining Futnet, with Allen Paule from the Ile-Saint-Denis club.

Allen Paule, thirty-four year old, was born in the Philippines. Married, father of two children, he is a maintenance worker and lives in Saint-Denis.
Playing in Division 3, Allen is a spectacular player from Sepak Takraw. We wanted to know more.

Communication Committee : Hello Allen! Thank you for giving your time to answer this interview.

Allen Paule : I have been living in France for 9 years now. I have lived in the United States before.

Allen Paule

CC : How did you find out about Futnet ?

AP: I discovered Futnet in a “different” way. In all my life, I had never heard of this sport which does not exist in the Philippines, the country where I was born and where I grew up.
This is how I discovered Futnet…

“I surprised everyone
with my way of playing.”

During a weekend in February 2021, my family and I were on a walk around the town of Saint-Denis. There was an event organized to promote different sports. I saw a group of people playing Teqball (Ile-Saint-Denis club / Saint-Denis Futne club), a sport that I had only been able to see on youtube before that.
I had never seen it with my own eyes until now. When the participants saw me observing them, they asked me if I wanted to try and play with them. Without really knowing how to play, because I did not know the exact rules of this sport, I joined the table to play with them by doing the gestures that I had learned at Sepak Takraw. I surprised everyone with my way of playing.

They first asked me if I played football or futsal…things I never tried in my life. So I explained to them that I had been a Sepak Takraw player from a very young age (in the Philippines) and that I continued to practice it in France. I also showed them photos and videos of me playing Sepak Takraw and they were impressed with what they saw. They then offered me to come and try another sport they practice on weekends, mentioning Futnet, which was closer to my original sport. I immediately had fun and I liked this sport as well as the members of the club. Since then I try to go to all the training sessions and that’s how the magic of Futnet was born in my life.

“Since my secondary and university studies
I participated in several big tournaments
in the Philippines in my best years
with my team. “

CC: Can you tell us about Sepak Takraw and your playing career ?

AP: Sepak Takraw is a very popular sport in Southeast Asia, but it is now spreading all over the world. It is a sport that requires a lot of training and practice to enjoy playing it. This very acrobatic sport mixes the skills of football with those of gymnastics and the agility of badminton. It is close to volleyball but without being able to use the arms and hands. The playing area is the same as in badminton with a net at a height of 1.55m.
I started Sepak Takraw in the province of Pampanga in the Philippines at the age of 11. Since my secondary and university studies I participated in several big tournaments in the Philippines in my best years with my team.

My Achievements :
Provincial champion 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005.
Regional Champion 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005.
7th at the 2002 National Championship.
National Champion 2003
National championship 3rd at the 2005
College Champion 2002, 2003, and 2004 (MVP)
I never had the opportunity to play at the international level during my playing years at the Philippines.

I started at the Lubao Pamganda Sepak Takrax club. I take advantage of this interview to warmly thank and pay tribute to my parents, my coaches Raul Villaluz and Michael Bengco, without forgetting all my partners who motivated, supported and pushed me beyond my limits to achieve my goals in this sport. and make me the man I am today. Before the pandemic fell on us, I played regularly with the clubs of Paris and Évry and we participated in several international tournaments in Europe in recent years.

Allen Paule – French Cup in Chelles

“I found that the players
with a lot of experience,
who have been playing
for several years,
have an excellent level.”

What are the differences between Sepak Takraw and Futnet ?

AP: In my opinion there are a lot of similarities between the two sports.
Regarding the differences, there is already the surface of the field which is larger in Futnet, the ball is bigger and heavier and the net is lower than in Sepak Takraw (Editor’s note: 1m10 against 1m55).
One rebound is allowed in Futnet unlike Sepak Takraw.
The gestures of receptions, services and attacks of Sepak Takraw are very useful in Futnet as are the agility, flexibility and acrobatic gestures developed by Sepak.

CC : Your impressions of the level of Futnet in France.

AP: I was surprised when I saw the highest level of Futnet in France. I found that players with a lot of experience, who have been playing for several years, have an excellent level. When I see them play, I always think to myself that by transposing the skills from Sepak to Futnet it would open up new possibilities and could bring even more excitement and thrills to Futnet.

CC : Thank you Allen !