SINGAPORE - Singapore's floorball teams are off to a flying start on the opening day of the SEA Games competition on Thursday, with both chalking up big victories.
Cheered on by a full-house crowd of more than 1,100 at ITE College Central, the women's team started off with a 5-0 victory over Causeway rivals Malaysia, while the men's team followed up with a 17-2 rout of Philippines.
Captain Ramlee Syazni was the pivotal figure for the men's team, scoring four goals, with forward Amshar Amin just behind with a hat-trick.
Philippines, spearheaded by forward Mark Polo, who scored both of Philippines' goals, briefly threatened to come back at 4-2 down. However, the floodgates opened for Singapore soon after, and any hopes of a Filipino comeback were extinguished when Polo went off with an ankle sprain.
For the women's team, the goals were scored through Lai Soak Kuan and Jill Quek, Laura Tan, accompanied by a double from Ong Hui Hui . While the team started as strong favourites in the preliminary match, they were unable to open up a big lead, despite opening the scoring after just 50 seconds through Lai.
It was only till two minutes before the end of the second period that nerves were settled, when forward Ong converted from close range to double the lead. Ong scored her second in the third period, this time from outside the box.
Veteran Jill Quek added a fourth to settle any doubts about the results, before Laura Tan added the icing on the cake.
Captain Wynne Tang attributed the slow start to the team being nervous, and added: "It feels good to win in front from the home crowd. From here on, we are going to go upwards."
In an earlier match in the afternoon, Thailand's men's team upset Malaysia 6-2 to announce their status as the dark horses of the Games.