Episode 7: Oinita revived after 100 years
A long time ago girls weren’t aloud to play oina, but they would hide their hair underneath a hat and they would play with the boys. In 1899 Spiru Haret, the Minister of Education, introduced the oina game in schools and made it mandatory.
In the same time he developed an alternative to the game that would be played by the girls. For some unknown reason it didn’t last long. But in 2013, after more that 100 of years since Spiru Haret’s initiative, the first oina championship for girls took place. The anniversary edition was played in Mioveni in the middle of summer on June 16. Almost 250 children representing 7 Romanian districts arrived to play. The oldest team was founded less then 6 months prior to the competition. “I wanted to see if the girls can play oina as good as the boys”, says Nicolae Dobre, the president of the Romanian Oina Federation. Last year the Federation launched an invitation to all the oina clubs affiliated to try to build girl teams. It was enough for the first all girl team to pop and other clubs started to compete in creating all girl teams. Matches between teams were organized for two days based on the age category – juniors I, II and III and vice versa for the guys. Similar to the guys, the girls proved to be very passionate players, with big egos and high hopes in becoming champions. But at the end the rivalry remained on the field. “They were as ambitious as they were tiny”, says Nicolae Dobre with a smile. Izabela is the youngest of them all. She is 7 years old and has two very long braided pigtails that fall on her back. She tries to help her team as much as she can. “All the girls wanted to win, they gave everything to go down in history as the team that won first place at the first oina national championship for girls”, says Dobre.
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