Water Polo: Singapore men's team off to winning start at inaugural Water Polo Inter Nations Cup 2022

Water Polo Men’s teams victorious in opening matches of Inter Nations Cup 2022, mixed results for Singapore Women’s teams

Singapore's water polo teams got their first taste of action since the Covid-19 pandemic halted all competitions. PHOTO: CHEAH CHENG POH, SINGAPORE SWIMMING ASSOCIATION

Singapore 18 May, Singapore - Despite having not played a competitive match against their regional rivals for over two years, Singapore’s men’s water polo teams showed no signs of rustiness as they won their opening matches at the inaugural Singapore Water Polo Inter-Nations Cup at the OCBC Aquatic Centre on Wednesday.

Singapore, who is fielding two teams in both the Men’s and Women’s competitions, saw the much senior team, Singapore A, comprising of stalwarts like Koh Jian Ying, Ang An Jun and Loh Zhizhi and young guns in Jayden See and Goh Wenzhe, overcome a spirited Thailand team by 11-6.

The scores were level at 3-3 during the half-time break, but an unanswered 4 goal burst during the third quarter gave Singapore A the cushion to pull away for the win. Bryan Ong led all Singapore scorers with 4 goals, with Yu Junjie, Koh and See -the trio bagging a brace each, and Loh also getting on the scoresheet. Phatsakorn Maneejohn top scored for Thailand with 2 goals.


Kan Aoyogi: We hope to keep improving

“I am pleased with how the boys played tonight. This is their first competitive game in more than two years, so it was no surprise that it was a slow start from them. However, once they found their rhythm, we could see that they enjoyed themselves out there. Definitely there are things that we will be working on, and we hope to keep improving as the competition progresses”, said Kan Aoyogi, head coach for Singapore A.

Singapore B, comprising mostly of the national youth development players, including SEA Games bronze medalist Tang Yee Heng, emerged victorious in the Causeway Derby against neighbours Malaysia in a convincing 20-6 win.

Vicknessh Mathiwanen top scored for Singapore with 5 goals, while Tang and Derek Chan contributed 4 goals each in the victory. Malaysia’s goals were shared between Bryan Wong, Lee Jia Chen and Abraham Chin with two goals apiece.

The Singapore men's Water Polo team captain with Mr Kon Yin Tong, Sport Singapore chairman. PHOTO: CHEAH CHENG POH, SINGAPORE SWIMMING ASSOCIATION

Head coach for Singapore B, Eugene Teo, said “Causeway derbies are never easy because of the passion between both countries. I am happy with how we performed today. I liked how we managed to control the game from the start. Hopefully we can build on today’s performance for the rest of the competition.”

The opening game of the men’s competition saw the clash between the gold and silver medalists of the 2019 SEA Games, Indonesia, and Philippines.

Defending SEA Games champions Indonesia proved too strong for the Philippines, as they cruised to a 15-7 victory, with a 6-goal burst in the 4th quarter to seal victory after the scores were level after three quarters.

Ahmad Fauzi Mappatabe led the Indonesians with 4 goals, while Hamid Ferdaus chipped in with a hat-trick. Juan Pablo Serrano led the Philippines with 2 goals.


Women's Competition: Thailand reigns supreme

In the women’s competition, reigning SEA Games champions Thailand, showed why they have been kings of women’s water polo in the region for the past few years when they hammered Singapore B 18-2 in their opening game. Thanidakarn Kwantongtanaree, Kritsana Puangtong and Raksina Rueangsappaisan led the scoring with a hat-trick each for Thailand, while Singapore scored through Mikayla Hoi and Charlene Tio.

There was however joy for Singapore A when they trounced neighbours Malaysia in the Causeway Derby, emerging 19-1 winners. The Koh sisters were instrumental in the victory, with team captain Ting Ting and younger sister Xiao Li leading the way with a hat-trick each.

Singapore’s other goal scorers were Melissa Chan with also a hat-trick, along with braces by Ong Cheng Jing, Nadine Thinagaran and Chow Yen Teng, and a goal each from Ranice Yap, Gisele Wang, Nicole Lim and Clarisse Gan.

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