Story by Jasmine Goh/Red Sports. Photos by REDintern Jerald Ang
Singapore Polytechnic, Saturday, September 20, 2014 — Republic Polytechnic (RP) managed to subdue a strong Nanyang Polytechnic (NYP) team to win their first game 33–19 in the 4th Handball Invitational Games. Koh Jing Li (#10) of RP led all scorers with a game-high 14 goals, while Robin Tan (NYP #18) had seven.
RP’s left back, Koh Jing Li (#10), was red hot in the first half, scoring 11 goals in the first half to fuel his team’s fast start. RP managed to score eight consecutive goals with their fast breaks and drive ins before NYP scored their opening goal with a cut in by Tony Lee (NYP #10) to make it 1–8.
RP went on to score three more in a row, putting themselves 11–1 up.
Unfazed by RP’s defensive press, Robin Tan (NYP #18) went past his defenders to score a cut in. This was followed by an interception of the ball and an assist to Kevin Tan (#8) of NYP who went on to score on a fast break to reduce the RP lead to eight (3–11).
RP’s keeper Brian Yeu Czech Den (#16) made many fantastic saves and created many fast break opportunities for his teammates. His quick reflexes blocked many shots from the NYP outfielders and did not make it easy for them.
A successful fast break by Benjamin Lau (#9) of RP saw the team take an 18–6 by halftime.
RP took control of the match from the early exchanges by intercepting loose passes as well as capitalizing on their fast breaks. However, the NYP team did not seem daunted by this and established their own game pace in the second half.
Determined to come back from the 12-point deficit, NYP stepped up their defense and aggression in the second half with attempts to man-mark RP’s shooting threat, Jing Li (#10).
This strategy proved effective for them, as Robin Tan (#18) and Sim Yao Teng (#3) scored three goals in quick succession.
Moments after, a two-minute penalty was awarded to NYP due to an illegal substitution. RP took advantage of the situation with quick cut ins and fast breaks through Qamaral Asyraf (#8), Benjamin Lau (#9), and Jing Li (#10).
RP’s keeper Czech Den (#16) also contributed to his team’s offense, scoring one for his team just before the final whistle blew. RP ended the game 33–19 winners.
“I’m very proud of my team,” said RP captain, Benjamin Lau (#9). “We pulled away in the first half and I believe that led to our win. NYP managed to catch up in the second half. They did a good job despite having new and inexperienced players.”
When asked about the team’s goal this year, Benjamin said, “We’re aiming for a silver.”
“For a couple of us, this was the first time we’ve played together. We tried to keep up with RP’s play,” said NYP captain, Kevin Tan (#10). “They’ve improved a lot from the previous year. It was definitely a good fight today from both teams.”
Scoring by Half
RP vs NYP
First half: 18–6
Second half: 15–13 (33–19)
Koh Jing Li (#10) – 14 goals
Robin Tan (#18) – 7 goals
Lionel Lee (#3), Wong Chun Hua (#4), Mohamed Syafiq B Mohd Sidin (#6), Jeremy Ng (#7), Qamarul Asyraf Bin Jumale (#8), Bengjamin Lau Jun Qi (#9), Koh Jing Li (#10), Lau Jiang Li Issac (#11), Soo Au En (#12), Wong Zhi Sheng (#13), Qamarul Fitri bin Jeffrey (#14), Muhammad Amirul Asyraf (#15), Yeu Czech Den (#16), Tay Zhao Xiang (#21), Tao Zhao He (#22), Toh Kian Swee (#23)
Gabriel Kong Yung Keong (#1), Sim Yao Teng (#3), Philbert Tay Yu Siong (#6), Tan Yong Liang Kevin (#8), Muhammed Nur Faez (#9), Lee Lai Peng Tony (#10), Muhammed Khairi Bin Balkiah (#15), Robin Tan Jia Jun (#18), Lim Wei Quan (#24), Benjamin Ang Jun Hao (#25), Renonathan s/o Amurthalingam (#29)
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