KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian rugby team performed morning prayers at the Hidayatullah mosque for Hari Raya Aidiladha and their prayers were answered when they did well to lift the Asia 7s trophy.
The team coached by Mohd Saizul Hafifi Mohd Noor edged Singapore 17-14 in the final at the Gelora Bung Karno Stadium in Jakarta, Indonesia, yesterday.
The winners of the tournament will win promotion to the top flight of the Asia Cup 7s series next year.
In the semi-finals, Malaysia outplayed debutants Mongolia 26-0 while Singapore faced a strong challenge from Thailand before prevailing 14-12.Malaysia, who defeated Singapore 22-7 in the final to win their first-ever gold in the 2017 Kuala Lumpur SEA Games, made three tries and one conversion while Singapore had two tries and two conversions.
Amalul Hazim Nasarrudin Muhd Siddiq Amir was the toast for Malaysia after making two tries while Muhd Zulhisham Rasli made the other try. Anwarul Hafiz Ahmad converted two conversions.
Farhan Amran and Nathan Wong each made one try for Singapore while Marah Ishraf Marah Hoessein delivered the conversions.
Saizul praised his players for not conceding a point in the two group matches as well in the semi-final against Mongolia.
“Singapore gave a tough fight but my players rose to the occasion to beat them in the final.“We performed Hari Raya Aidiladha prayers in the morning in a mosque here and it helped us to win the final.
“We also achieved our double mission by winning the tournament to win promotion to the top division next year and we also used the tournament to gauge our strength against the Asian teams, ” said Saizul.
Final: Malaysia 17 Singapore 14.
Third placing: Thailand 24 Mongolia 14.
Semi-finals: Malaysia 26 Mongolia 0, Singapore 14 Thailand 12.