SRI LANKA’S S.Thomas’ College (STC) proved too strong for the local competitors after clinching top spots in the recent Tunku Abdul Rahman University College (TAR UC) Water Polo Open Championship.
Both their teams in the men’s open (Group A) and women/boys Under-17 (Group B) took honours after beating Penang WP (10-6) and Sri KL Sharkies (13-11) in two intense finals during the two-day competition.
Both Penang WP and STC A were well matched in the Group A finals.
Penang WP conceded the least goals (9) in three games among the eight teams in the group, while STC A scored a staggering 33 goals on day one.
In the final, both sides started off on the same foot with the scoreline remaining close until half-time when STC A, with a stubborn defence, managed to prevent the Penangites from finding the net on more than a number of occasions.
In the Group B final, Sri Kuala Lumpur School’s water polo team gave the visiting team its toughest competition, with both junior teams duking it out from the start with plenty of goalmouth action until the last quarter when STC B, in their swift counter attacks, converted two quick goals to beat the Sharkies.
“It was an entertaining competition and we were not expecting such a tough match against the Group B finalists Sri KL who had some fantastic players in the team,” STC’s coach Zafara Zainudeen said.
Zafara, a former national goalkeeper for Sri Lanka, said it was the third time STC have travelled to Malaysia for competitions.
The team, comprising players no older than 19, had active league players and were in the country for friendly matches with clubs and state teams to gain exposure outside of Sri Lanka.
“Even though we won, we still have a lot of work to do because we came here to improve our game for the league in Sri Lanka,” he said, adding that the local teams and supporters made them feel at home.
STC’s Isura Kahandawa, 19, and Manura Wickramarathne, 17, also picked up the Best Player award in Group A and Group B respectively.
The 10th edition of the tournament was organised by the TAR UC swimming club.
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