Yeap is that time of the year.... is football or soccer fever.... is a time when the World stands still, united in one voice just to shout "GOALLLLLLLL!!!". This is the year for Brazil World Cup 2014. I want to bring you twelve years back, to year 2002.
The 2002 FIFA World Cup was the 17th staging of the FIFA World Cup, held in South Korea and Japan from 31 May to 30 June. It was also the first World Cup held in Asia, and the last in which the golden goal rule was implemented. What made 2002 World Cup so special is that this was the first (and so far the only) World Cup to be hosted by two traditional rival countries. (with reference from Wikipedia)
ALBA V501-X218 (2002 FIFA WORLD CUP KOREA JAPAN Edition)
Here is a commemorative watch for the FIFA World Cup 2002 by ALBA watch company. Alba is a sub-brand of Seiko Watch Corporation. It first appeared in 1979. Using Seiko's movements but with modern styling designed to appeal especially to younger customers, Alba watches are primarily aimed at Asian markets in the hope of creating long-term loyalty to the Seiko group as these customers' purchasing power increases.
I bought this watch back in 2002 for under RM200. Actually there was another Seiko commemorative FIFA chronograph, but that one did not appeal to me. This watch comes in a white paper box. Unlike other commemorative edition or limited edition watch, this one doesn't have any fancy wooden box or packing. The front of the box is printed with the FIFA Korea Japan 2002 World Cup logo.
I still have the original watch label on it. There is also an official FIFA licensing hologram sticker on the label. From far, this watch looks like ordinary ALBA V501 Quartz watch.
This watch has a 36mm case made of stainless steel with sandblasting treatment. It is very light and have the look of military watches. It is just a simple 3 hands watch with white military dial of 1-12; 13-24. The hour and minute hands are lumibrited.
The case shape is very classical, simple and nice. I would say it is a relatively clean design. The center of the dial is a logo of FIFA 2002 Korea Japan World Cup. You can find the brand Alba sidelined at 3 o'clock position.
This watch is fitted with a Polypropylene military strap. This is neither a Nato or a Zulu strap. It is just fitted with an ordinary stainless steel buckle.
The stainless steel case back is a simple snap on and can be easily open with a knife. The only surprise of the case if the engraving stated "copyrighted 1999 FIFA tm". The case back also stated a water resistant of 5 bar or 50 meters depth. This is suitable for everyday use and swimming but definitely a big NO NO for poolside diving, snorkeling or water sports.
This watch uses the Seiko Epson V501 Quartz movement. This is a very simple and cheap movement. V501 usually is seem in Seiko's sub-line watches like Pulsar, Lorus and Alba. You certainly cannot compare this with Seiko Quartz movement used in Seiko watches.
Despite what being said, this is still a very descent watch that serve for casual daily wearing. It serves its core functions well. It can tell time loyally and it serves as a souvenir and a memory for the World Cup 2002.
Although this watch has never been worn, the effect of time has taken its toll. The chrome plated crown has shown sign of wearing off. Never mind, the crown is not signed and can be easily replaced.
If you're interested in stylish, cool designs and value for money, Alba is for you. The watch also serves as a memory that Brazil won the tournament for a record fifth time, beating Germany 2–0 in the final.
I am never a die hard football fans for several reasons. Match fixing, and football betting just kill a great sport. No matter how, I always look forward for the World Cup and hoping to see a sheer display of athleticism, sportsmanship, fair play and great teamwork.......