It was eight years since women’s rugby was last played at the South East Asia Games, but the balance of power proved to have little changed in Singapore this weekend as Thailand retained the title they won in 2007.
Thailand’s main rival was Singapore, and Siok Lim scored for Singapore after two minutes in their opening pool game against the Thais, home supporters had some hope that Thailand’s might be threatened – after all, they had failed to concede any points in 2007. However this setback was reversed two minutes later, and four more tries then followed to complete a 31-5 win for the title holders.
It was also the only points they would concede all weekend. Thailand swept past the Philippines 36-0 (Nuengruethai Jaemit, playing as a forward, scoring four tries), Malaysia 37-0 (Jaemit adding two more scores) and Laos 45-0 to reach the final with ease.
Singapore similarly dismissed Malaysia and Laos, where Jia Chan scored four tries in a 54-0 win, but were pushed all the way in what was effectively a semi-final against the Philippines, winning just 12-7
In the final Thailand, led by 26-year-old Yusri Chitchanok – who scored three tries – and Liamrat Uthumporn, were unstoppable, winning the first half 24-0 before closing the match and claiming victory, 39-0. The Filipino women were awarded the bronze after posting a 22-0 victory over Malaysia.
“We are happy to be able to perform well out there especially with the home crowd and I’m still happy with the silverware,” said Singapore captain Samantha Teo. “Every team was really good here, and in the finals, Thailand brought the game to us.”
Coach Gene Tong added: “I’m disappointed. Thailand were definitely a cut above us, they are very experienced and have a core team that have been together for many years. Our team is very young, with an average age of 20 to 23 so we need to build them up, get really good athletes. We need more speed as Thailand had speed and good individual skills.”
- Laos 0-17 Malaysia
- Thailand 31-5 Singapore
- Laos 0-17 Philippines
- Malaysia 0-29 Singapore
- Laos 0-54 Singapore
- Thailand 36-0 Philippines
- Thailand 37-0 Malaysia
- Singapore 12-7 Philippines
- Laos 0-45 Thailand
- Philippines 27-0 Malaysia
Bronze Medal Match
- Philippines 22-0 Malaysia
Gold Medal Match
- Thailand 39-0 Singapore