Netball: Sri Lanka dethrone holders Singapore in Asian Championships semi-final

SINGAPORE - The national netball team's reign as Asian champions ended on Saturday (Aug 6) after the two-time defending champions were beaten 36-30 by Sri Lanka in the semi-final of the Asian Netball Championship in Bangkok.

Ruth Aitken's players were chasing their fourth title in total but they were put on the back foot by their opponents, who had won the tournament four times, from the start of the game.

The Republic trailed Sri Lanka 7-10 in the first quarter and the gap widened to seven points (14-21) at half time.

Singapore, ranked 17th in the world, reduced the deficit to five points in the third quarter (22-27).

But time ran out and they were denied a comeback as the team lost to the world No. 27.

The new-look squad, led by captain Vanessa Lee, are playing in their first tournament together following the retirement of three stalwarts - captain Micky Lin, vice-captain Chen Huifen and defender Premila Hirubalan - in May.

Singapore will play Hong Kong in the third/fourth placing match on Sunday (Aug 7), in a rematch of their earlier group game, which Singapore won 32-18.

Malaysia edged out Hong Kong 35-34 in the other semi-final and will meet Sri Lanka in Sunday's final.