Singapore gets mauled by South Korea in Asian Five Nations debut

Here’s a report on Singapore’s match against South Korea. I got it from the IRB website.

This is the link in case you want to read about Japan’s 87-10 win over Kazakhstan: http://www.irb.com/newsmedia/regional/newsid=2030935.html#formbook+tells+asian+five+nations

                                          Korea 65-0 Singapore

The two teams entered the Seongnam Stadium in Seoul with diametrically opposed targets as Singapore was intent on keeping the ball in tight to its forwards while Korea was looking to play an expansive match.  Despite frigid conditions and a late drizzle that should have kept Korea from experimenting too much, the home side put on a beautiful display of clutch handling, support play and cross-kicking to net 11 tries on the day, five of which were converted. 

Starting bravely, the Singapore Rugby Lions held the Koreans scoreless through the first quarter, but the Koreans looked threatening every time they had ball in hand and their stifling defence foiled Singapore’s game plan of retaining possession. 

In the 14th minute Korea’s offensive threat became reality as flanker Lee Kwang Moon opened the scoring after finishing off a flowing movement with the ball going through a host of Korean hands in both the pack and the backs.  Korea almost opened the floodgates then and there as from the kick-off a darting run by the scrum half Yang Young Hun nearly put flanker Lee Kwang Moon over again, but for a try-saving tackle by Singapore captain Ben Wheeler.
 
Making matters worse for Singapore, Mohammed Ismail “Izzy” A Kadir went down in the 22nd minute with a strained hamstring.  The loss of Kadir, a veteran player capped 32 times and the current leading scorer in the Singapore team with 100 points, left Singapore to fill the gaps with 20-year old Goh Beng Chuan on his test debut.  Predictably, the floodgates opened and by the 51st minute, three Korean players had each recorded a brace of tries.
 
Both teams rang in the changes in the second half, with Korea making liberal use of its bench at the interval.  Despite the personnel changes, Korea ran in a further six tries after half time as Singapore began to show the effects of an afternoon spent almost entirely in defence.

Singapore exhibited flashes of what it will need at this level, putting a few nice phases together and the back row of Wheeler, Andrew Bennett and James Valintine was workmanlike in its defensive effort. 

“It was a rough introduction to the Asian Five Nations premiership,” said Singapore captain Ben Wheeler, who put in a tireless effort around the park, “but we had our moments and did put a few phases together. Those are the positives we can take from today and are what we need to build on to compete at this level.” 

Korea 65

Tries: Lee, Kwang Moon (2), Choi Si Won (2), Kim Sung Soo (2), Han Hun Kyu (2), Kim Keun Hyun (2), Cha Yo Han (1)
Conversions: Hong Jun Ki (3), Kim Keun Hyun (2)

Singapore 0

***************************************************

Yours in sport

Singapore Sports Fan

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