The boys from the youth soccer team that were trapped at a cave in Thailand played a friendly match in Buenos Aires on Sunday.
The 12 Thai boys from the youth soccer team played the match at Argentina’s Monumental Stadium. The boys, who were trapped in the cave for weeks, were invited by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
The invitation by the IOC was for the 2018 Youth Olympic Games. The games began on Saturday and will end on October 18. The boys arrived to Buenos Aires on Friday and played a friendly match at the stadium on Sunday.
The team made its appearance along with its coach, who was trapped in the cave with them for weeks. The youth soccer team played a match against River Plate’s under 13 team. The match finished 3 – 3.
The boys and the coach were trapped in the Tham Luang caves in June. The group had to wait in the cave for over two weeks. The rescue caught the attention of the world since emergency teams had to come up with ideas on how to get the group out safely.
The team was trapped in the cave after they were taken there by their coach. Reports said the coach had taken them there before. The group got trapped when heavy rains flooded the cave, forcing them to look for higher ground.
The search operation began shortly after the group disappeared. Emergency teams searched for days before divers found the group sitting an area surrounded by water. The group wasn’t rescued right away since emergency teams had to figure out a way to get them out of the flooded cave.
The rescue operation went on for days before divers finally got some of the team out. The rest of the group was rescued hours later. The soccer team and their coach were taken to hospitals.
The team was applauded before the start of the friendly match in Argentina. The head of the Thai Olympic Delegation said in a statement that the boys were very pleased to be there and very excited.
He added that during the rescue operation, so many people arrived to the country to help rescue them. He finished by saying that they feel they owe a debt to everyone.
The stadium where they played saw the 1978 World Cup final. The boys were given a tour of the stadium as well as a locker room to change before the match.
The news of the boys in the cave caught the attention of the world and the group was rescued between July 8 and July 10. The rescue operation took some time as heavy rains forced emergency teams to bring water pumps and get the water out.
The boys spent days without eating and seeing no sunlight. They were rescued one by one and taken to hospitals, where they began a long recovery. The rescue took place while the 2018 World Cup was taking place.
FIFA invited the boys and the coach to the World Cup final between France and Croatia. The invitation came just days after the rescue but they could not attend due to medical reasons.