PESEB, Evans Road, Friday, August 2, 2013 – Anglo-Chinese School (Independent) overcame a shaky start to beat Saint Joseph’s Institution (SJI) 24–11 in the National C Division Rugby Championship.
The win sets up ACS(I) for a second-place finish in the table and if ACS(I) beats Raffles Institution in its final group match, they will meet SJI again in the semi-finals.
SJI got off to a steady start and pegged ACS(I) back in their half. They however could not turn the possession into tries and were forced to settle for three points from a converted penalty by Sam Sean Shepherd.
ACS(I) steadied themselves and started to play better rugby. Despite going down to 14 men for a high tackle by Eithan Jahja Loo, ACS(I) seized the initiative when they powered over the line for the first try of the afternoon through Joel Goh. Nicholas Wong converted successfully to give ACS(I) a 7–3 lead at half-time with SJI also down to 14 with a man sent off for a high tackle.
In the second half, ACS(I) saw the return of scrum half Matthew Robinson who has been out from a ankle injury for the first five matches. The intro of Matthew injected much pace into the ACS(I) attack and backline.
Better handling in the second half saw ACS(I) string decent moves together. A try early in the second half saw ACS(I) lead 12-3. Sean Shepherd kicked another penalty for SJI to keep the game competitive at 12–6, before ACS(I) pulled further ahead at 19–6 with Muhammad Darwisy converting sweetly from side after Tan Tham scored the try.
SJI, to their credit, never gave up and camped on the ACS(I) 5m line with 10 minutes left in the game. They eventually scored through a Sam Shepherd try after Tan Tham (#8) of ACS(I) was yellow carded for repeated offsides.
SJI missed the conversion and trailed by eight points (19–11), essentially a two-score game. ACS(I) was to have the final word when Hanshen Tjoa marked his return from injury with a empathic run and try in the corner, right at the final whistle.
This then marked the return of ACS(I) standoff, Shern Lim, who came out specially to take his first competitive kick this season, but he missed miserably, albeit with a huge smile on his face.
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