Jakarta Komodos Junior Rugby Club Claim Superb Result at Singapore Tournament

The future of the Jakarta Komodos Rugby Club appears to be in good hands after the Under 8s pulled off one of the club’s most impressive results with a fourth-placed finish at the highly competitive Tanglin Rugby Club Cup 2016 in Singapore on May 14 and 15.

Playing against much more experienced opposition and their first full matches of full-contact rugby, the Komodos dazzled on the first day, winning all four games, three of which were come-from-behind victories. Victims included the host Tanglin Rugby Club 29-0, the Centaurs 14-10, a second Centaurs side 21-5, and the Singapore Dragon, 24-17.

Heading into the second day, the Komodos were eyeing a semi-final finish needing just one win from the remaining two pool games to be assured a slot. They did it in style. In what was their best team performance, the Under 8s thumped the Singapore Cricket Club 35-0, and then demonstrated great character in overcoming a 12-point deficit in the final pool game to run away with it 24-12 against the luckless Titans.

“That was as good as it got, unfortunately, in terms of results on the pitch,” said coach Cameron Bates. “We suffered a couple of injuries and our minds weren’t focused in the semi-final match. Our game plan kind of went out the window.”

Cameron said the players took the 17-0 loss hard and it was difficult to bounce back for the third-place match against the Tanglin Hurricanes, who like the Komodos had gone through their pool unbeaten and had been favourites to win the tournament.

“Their players were as gutted as ours so it was uplifting to see how both teams pulled up their socks and took to the fields to produce what I think was the match of the tournament, it was brutal,” he said. “There was great defence, great attacking play, great teamwork and individual brilliance in abundance and the most deserving team, Tanglin, ended up winning on the day.”

Cameron said the club had finished fifth out of 16 in Singapore in the touch form of the game six months ago, so a fourth place finish in contact was an outstanding result. “We’ll be aiming for the finals when we return in September and know how much work we will have to put in to achieve this. Bring on next season.”

Team awards

Never Say Die Award: Tom
Don’t Mess With Me Award: Mischa
Coach’s X-Factor Award: Gabe
Best Forward Award: Conor
Best Back Award: Zac
Best Tackler Award: Tobey
Best Passing Award: Carter
Best All Round Player Award: Liam and Robby
Bravest Player Award: Jaxson
Best Individual Try Award: Ollie
Most Improved Defence Award: Hamish
Most Improved Attacking Award: Nick
Most Potential Award: Daniel and Alex

Cameron also extended his thanks to co-coach Graham Orr — who made the trip from Malaysia — and the support and behind-the-scenes organisational skills of the parents, including transportation to the Sunwolves match at Singapore Stadium. “It was great to finally put into practice what we have been learning during training, and the Sunwolves’ game was the icing on the cake. All but one of our players had ever seen a professional rugby match before and it was an amazing and invaluable experience.”