WEEKLY ROUND-UP: Sports happenings in Singapore (4-10 Oct)

Singapore pool player Aloysius Yapp at the US Open Pool Championship. (PHOTO: Team Singapore/Facebook)
Singapore pool player Aloysius Yapp at the US Open Pool Championship. (PHOTO: Team Singapore/Facebook)

SINGAPORE — Here is a round-up of sports events and developments in Singapore in the past week (4-10 October):

Pool player Aloysius Yapp rises to world No.2

Singapore pool player Aloysius Yapp rose to world No.2 in the World Pool-Billiard Association (WPA) player rankings, which was updated on Tuesday (5 October).

The 25-year-old has been in a rich vein of form in the past six weeks, when he has been training and competing in the United States. He was ranked only at world No.20 when he arrived at the US in mid-August.

He secured a third-place finish at the World 10-ball Pool Championship in Las Vegas last month. The following week at the US Open 9-ball Championship, he came in second, losing in the final to Filipino Carlo Biado.

On 25 September, he went one better, winning the CueSports International Michigan 10-Ball Open tournament, giving him the ranking points needed to move up to world No.2.

Yapp has two more WPA ranking events before returning to Singapore in early November, and is unlikely to overtake top-ranked American Shane van Boening.

Tatsuma Yoshida names 27 players for provisional Suzuki Cup squad

Singapore men’s national football coach Tatsuma Yoshida has on Friday (8 October) named 27 players in the provisional squad for the AFF Suzuki Cup, which will be held from 5 December to 1 January.

Nine uncapped players could potentially be part of a Singapore squad at Southeast Asia’s flagship international tournament: goalkeeper Zharfan Rohaizad, defenders Nur Adam Abdullah, Iqram Rifqi and Tajeli Salamat, midfielders Saifullah Akbar and Song Uiyoung as well as forwards Amy Recha, Hafiz Nor and Shawal Anuar.

Five overseas-based players have been included – defenders Safuwan Baharudin and Irfan Fandi, midfielders M. Anumanthan and Zulfahmi Arifin, and forward Ikhsan Fandi. Young Lions midfielder Hami Syahin and forward Ilhan Fandi are on the standby list.

The squad will commence centralised training from 25 October, two weeks after the Singapore Premier League season ends. Up to 30 players can be registered for the final tournament squad, which will be confirmed in end November.

The Lions will begin their Group A campaign against Myanmar on 5 December, before going on to face the Philippines, Brunei or Timor-Leste, and Thailand over the subsequent 13 days.

28 players named for U-23 Asian Cup qualifiers provisional squad

A provisional squad of 28 players was named on Wednesday (6 October) for the Singapore Under-22 men’s national team’s upcoming Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U-23 Asian Cup Group H qualifiers, which will be held at the Jalan Besar Stadium from 25 to 31 October.

The Young Lions will open their Group H campaign against Timor-Leste on 25 October, before going on to play the Philippines (28 October) and South Korea (31 October).

The provisional squad was selected based on player performances throughout the 2021 Singapore Premier League season, as well as two centralised U22 training camps in June and September. The team will undergo another centralised training from Monday, before being whittled down to a final squad of 23 on 18 October.

Forward Ilhan Fandi, however, has been ruled out of the squad, as he is recuperating after undergoing a surgery in mid-September.

A total of 11 groups will be contesting in the qualifiers, with the group winners and four best second-placed teams set to advance to the final stage. The U-23 Asian Cup tournament will be held in Uzbekistan in June 2022.

Singapore to stage 2 back-to-back golf tournaments in January

The Asian Tour announced on Tuesday (5 October) that it is planning to stage two golf tournaments in Singapore over consecutive weeks in January, as it begins to resume regional tournaments after a lengthy hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Tour, which was halted in March 2020 following lockdowns and international border closures throughout Asia, will first make its return with back-to-back inaugural tournaments in Phuket - the Blue Canyon Championship (25-28 November) and the Laguna Phuket Championship (2-5 December).

Together with the Singapore tournaments, the four events will be added to the blended 2020/21 Tour schedule, ensuring that the Tour can complete its Order of Merit and crown a Merit list champion.

Australian Wade Ormsby has led the Order of Merit throughout the hiatus since winning the Hong Kong Open in January 2020.

All four tournaments will be played in tournament bubbles and will adhere to local government standard operating procedures. In addition, all players will need to be fully vaccinated in order to compete.

Singtel to launch two new sports channels

Singtel will launch SPOTV (Ch114) and SPOTV 2 (Ch115), two dedicated sports channels from the South Korea-based Eclat Media Group on Singtel TV on Monday (11 October).

Through the SPOTV channels, sports fans will be able to catch the live action from some of the biggest world sporting events such as MotoGP, Wimbledon, US Open Tennis Championships, British Open Golf and World Table Tennis tournaments.

From Monday to 8 November, all Singtel TV customers will enjoy free previews of both channels. Singtel TV customers who are subscribed to the World Sports pack and all Variety, Value and Ultimate packs, as well as Singtel CAST customers who are subscribed to the Sports Plus pack will be able to enjoy these two channels at no additional charges.

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