Story by Zachary Foo/Red Sports. Photos by Lim Yong Teck/Red Sports

National C Division Rugby (Cup) Anglo-Chinese School (Independent) vs St. Andrew's Secondary

Mohammad-Mikha Khaleel Haat (#8) of ACS(I) protects the ball from a St. Andrew’s tackle. (Photo 1 © Lim Yong Teck/Red Sports)

National Stadium, Tuesday, August 26, 2014 — Anglo-Chinese School (Independent) [ACS(I)] defeated St. Andrew’s Secondary (SAS) 28–8 in the final of the National C Division Rugby (Cup) Championship. This was a reverse of the previous year’s result, when Saint Andrew’s were 14–13 victors.

This is the first school final at the new National Stadium.

Coming into the final, ACS(I) held the advantage. They beat St. Andrew’s in the group stages by a whopping 73–0 scoreline, which gave them the psychological edge prior to kickoff.

ACS(I) were aggressive immediately after the kickoff, fashioning a chance to score almost immediately. However, they were unable to do so after conceding a penalty to SAS, which allowed them to clear the ball. Mohammad-Mikha Khaleel Haat [ACS(I) #8] did a lot of damage for ACS(I) early on, as his rampaging runs proved hard for SAS to stop.

The breakthrough of the match came when Tristan Yeow [ACS(I) #12] caught an errant pass from an SAS player. Tristan burst through the SAS defence to score the first try of the game. Matthew Robinson [ACS(I) #9] converted the try with an accurate kick through the uprights.

The try galvanised the ACS(I) team as a whole and they found themselves within SAS territory again immediately after the kickoff. SAS did not help themselves with poor kicking, as the ACS(I) players ran down the ball each time.

Douglas Ang [ACS(I) #7] got the second try of the match, after finding a gap through the SAS defence. Douglas used his speed to beat the SAS defence to the try line. SAS had a chance to score right before half-time. Their forward pack did well to advance the ball deep, but a fumble by their backs squandered their chance. ACS(I) went into the half with a comfortable 14–0 lead.

The second half saw a more spirited SAS team come out to play. Their forward pack was more assertive in driving the ball, which kept the ACS(I) defence on the back foot. After getting a penalty in deep position, SAS opted to kick. Ang Seow Pin (SAS #14) was able to convert the penalty, giving his team three points. ACS(I) almost answered back immediately with a drive down the right wing. However, SAS did well to stop them at the sidelines.

The match seemed to turn in SAS’s favour when Mohammad-Mikha Khaleel Haat [ACS(I) #8] was yellow-carded and sent to the sin bin. With the threat of his runs out of the way, SAS were more willing to take the initiative to attack with an extra man. Despite this, ACS(I) still found a way to score. Isaac Tan [ACS(I) #3] was able to break through and score against the run of play, essentially killing off any momentum SAS gathered up to that point. This became evident after the restart, as ACS(I) resumed their dominant play from the first half.

Josh Quan [ACS(I) #11] put the icing on the cake for ACS(I), grabbing the hand-off after a scrum and rushing past a few SAS defenders to score. In the waning moments of the game, Philip Distor Joseph (SAS #4) scored a consolation try for the Saints. But it was all too late, as the final whistle sounded after the missed conversion kick to hand the 28–8 win to ACS(I). This is ACS(I)’s 17th C Division title. They reclaimed their title, after going down 13–14 to the Saints in 2013.

ACS(I) captain, Ian Teh (#13), said, “It was a very important win for us as we wanted to get the shield back from last year. When the Saints had a resurgence in the second half, the only thing I thought about was whether the team can defend together and keep our composure. I hope that we will be able to win again next season in the B Division, as it is a really good feeling. I would like to thank my coaches, teachers and the whole school for coming down to support us. It feels good to see everyone cheering for us in unison.”

Scoring by Quarter
Anglo-Chinese School (Independent) vs St. Andrew’s Secondary
1st Half: 14–0
2nd Half: 14–8 (28–8)

Try Scorers
Isaac Tan (#3) – 1 try
Douglas Ang (#7) – 1 try
Josh Quan (#11) – 1 try
Tristan Yeow (#12) – 1 try
Matthew Robinson (#9) – 4 conversions

Philip Distor Joseph (#4) – 1 try
Ang Seow Pinn (#14) – 1 penalty

ACS(I) Roster
Neo Yuan Tong (#1), Benjamin Lim (#2), Isaac Tan (#3), Jared Chow (#4), Sim Soon Xiang (#5), Krellstein Thomas (#6), Douglas Ang (#7), Mohammad-Mikha Khaleel Haat (#8), Matthew Robinson (#9), Nicholas Ethan Wong (#10), Josh Quan (#11), Tristan Yeow (#12), Ian Teh (#13), Jaian Kurup (#14), Benjamin Poey (#15), Janan Yap (#16), Bryan Ang (#17), Isaac Heng (#18), Joel Ting (#19), Lucas Teng (#21), Kongpote Chamapun (#22), Lam Wei Xuan (#25), Elroy Irwan Jahjoo Loo (#26), Adian-Scott Veroff Ee Chew (#27), Shane Patrick Duggan (#28), Reuben Pang (#31), Reuben Sivadas Ruixian (#32), Sean Tan (#36)

SAS Roster
Goh Wei En Mark (#1), Alexander Ismail Brown (#2), Choo Jian Hao (#3), Philip Distor Joseph (#4), Navaraj Rajendran (#5), Ezekiel Koh Giap Teng (#6), Donovan Choo Jun Mun (#7), Lee Sze Yong Benjamin (#8), Khairil Ridzuan B Zulkilfee (#9), Renald Lim Sheng Yew (#10), Jelinek Dylan Kirk (#11), Umar B Mohamed Sha’ari (#12), Lim Chang Yuan (#13), Ang Seow Pinn (#14), Ryan Sim Ming Hui (#15), Chan Chung Yan Jackie (#16), Daryl Liau Guo Zhi (#17), Webster Matthew James Wei Yang (#18), Miguel Erwin Besoro William (#19), Chong Dillion (#20), Mohamad Haikal Zafran B M A (#21), Sean Er Zhong Xuan (#22), Ethan Lee Junxian (#23), Morgan Owain Rhys (#24), Brennan Ng Zheng Yang (#25), Jerome Loh Kai Jun (#26), Chua Wei Li (#27), Julian Leow Tze An (#28)

National C Division Rugby Championship — Fixtures and Results

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