SPH Foundation hosts primary school tchoukball championships for third time

SINGAPORE - The Singapore Press Holdings Foundation (SPH Foundation) will this year host the national primary school championships for tchoukball, a fast-paced game that has fast gained popularity here, for the third time.

Some 23 primary schools, including defending champion Beacon Primary, will compete for top honours in the senior division, for players aged 12 and 13, on Friday in Junyuan Primary in Tampines.

The third of the edition the SPH Foundation National Primary Schools Tchoukball Championships has grown so big that it has introduced zonal competitions for the first time this year.

General manager of SPH Foundation Ginney Lim said participation numbers in the sport has doubled in two years.

In 2012, there were just 19 teams participating in the competition; this year, 39 teams took part in total, with 16 boy and 16 girl teams proceeding to the finals.

Pronounced chook-ball, the game was named for the sound the ball makes when it smacks the netted frame. The non-contact team sport has elements of volleyball, basketball and handball. Played with just two netted frames, a ball, and about half a school hall, players will pass, catch and strike the ball on the netted frame so it rebounds off the floor to score.

Mr Jeff Ang, general secretary of the Tchoukball Association of Singapore, said it is "extremely satisfying" to see an increase in the number of Senior Division teams.

"The Junior Division, to be held at the end of the year, promises more to come. More children are given the opportunity to play and enjoy Tchoukball, made possible by SPH Foundation," he said.

Those in the Junior Division, played by pupils aged 11 and under, will compete in the annual inter-primary tchoukball competition in November.