Positive start for Hibiscus

Muizzuddin Yahaya

21 April 2019 – The national 15s side started their test match on a positive note with a good win over Singapore Select. It was a much-needed result for the team as there was a major transition in the team management as well as in the player called to represent Malaysia.

Malaysia scored 5 tries to overcome the Singapore Select 33 – 24 team in a match that took place at Queenstown ActiveSg Stadium in Singapore. It was played in 3 halves which give chance to Malaysia to rotate and test all possible combination.

Brad Mika’s boys had a mix of performance through out the match. Singapore Select shocked the hibiscus as they dominate the first encounter and broke the deadlock with a penalty to lead 3 – 0. It was a much-needed wake-up call for Malaysia as they grew into the game, with Samuel Rentap scoring his first ever try for Malaysia in his first cap for Hibiscus. Amirul Aqil did not face much problem to add 2 more points from the conversion. Singapore hits back before a quick mind of Sakiusa Gavidi to do tap and go caught Singapore off guard as Sakiusa scored Hibiscus second try. Malaysia lead 14 – 10 at the end of the first half as Amirul Aqil double his conversion count.

Second half saw Malaysia in total control as they added 2 more try and a conversion. Another debutant, Hashraffuddin Basir opened his account with Malaysia 3rd try after good work from Nathaniel Tan and Dineswaran Krishnan. Amirul Aqil made it 3 in a row, with a 100% conversion rate for this game before he was replaced by another newcomer, Mohd Faris Pead. Aliff Sazrie combined well with Fairuz Abd Rahman to scored the fourth try. Malaysia ended the second half on high as they lead 26 – 10.

It was a different story in the third half, Singapore showed what they can do with 2 tries and 2 conversions to close the gap, 26 – 24. Malaysia was also reduced to 13 players at one point as Dineswaran and Etonia Saukuru yellow carded. Sakiusa Gavidi settled the match for Malaysia as he scored Malaysia 5th and his second in the match. Fairuz Abdul Rahman noted his return to the national squad with the last conversion of the match.

Malaysia beat Singapore Select 33 – 24 in the very first match under Brad Mika.

Malaysia will face Sri Lanka in the second test match, scheduled to take place at Bukit Jalil National Stadium on the 4th May 2019.

Malaysia is preparing for the upcoming Asia Rugby Championship Premier 2019, as they will face South Korea and Hong Kong in the tri-nation competition. The Hibiscus will need to do a lot better, as they suffered 4 defeat in 2018 campaign.

Ticket for Malaysia matches are already on sale. Get them today at Seat Advisor

Photos courtesy of Syaiful A.Hakeem

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