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Japan strikes gold at 2nd Asia Pacific Students Cup

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Japan strikes gold at 2nd Asia Pacific Students Cup

25 September, 2013   Abel Khoo


The Asia Pacific Students Cup is the largest sailing event to be held in Singapore to date (photo by VOXSPORTS).


The abilities of judgement, willpower and reflexes are some of the demands that come from an all-rounded sport like sailing. The 2nd Asia Pacific Student Cup, a back-to-back four day sailing event, saw participants tussling their way through the fresh waters of Marina Bay City Gallery in a series of races from round robin to knockout rounds. 

Jointly organised by the Singapore Management University (SMU) and the Singapore Sailing Federation, the competition that was held from 17th to 21st of September is the largest sailing event ever held in Singapore to date.

A mix of local and international sailing talents were part of the 14 teams that participated in this event. Each team had a skipper (leader in sailing terms) to represent their team. The first two days were the round robin fixtures to determine which top 8 teams were going to qualify for the knockout stages, with each team playing a total of 13 matches. 

Justin Liu led his team from Singapore to a strong start winning 11 out of the 13 matches and easily qualified to the knockout stages. Among the eight teams that qualified, five were all local sailing talents and the odds were on a Singapore team to win the 2nd Asia Pacific Student Cup. 

The quarterfinals of the knockout stages were played to the best of three games and the semifinals and finals match were played to the best of 5 games. All hopes were on Justin Liu to lead his team to victory after an impressive track record during the round robin fixtures.

However, Justin Liu lost to Kohei Ichikawa from Japan in the first round of the quarterfinals. This shocked many teams, as Kohei Ichikawa’s team was last to qualify for the knockout stages. 


The team from Japan was delighted to emerge as champions after sweeping aside their competition in the later stages (photo by VOXSPORTS).

Japan Favourites

All eyes were on Team Japan from then on. Kohei Ichikawa appeared to breeze through the competition from then on as they swept their opponents 3-0 in both the semifinals and the finals of the 2nd Asia Pacific Student Cup and emerge as champions. The miraculously turnaround for this team could not make the team anymore happier as they smiled and posed for cameras that were snapping near the finish line of the finals. 

Kohei Ichikawa, skipper of Japanese team Gekko said, “I’m so glad to get the first prize. I have not sailed in this kind of wind before and it’s sometimes a little tough, but after everything, I’m happy that we won!”

The first runner-up trophy was awarded to Russell Kan from Singapore followed by Navee Thamsoontorn from Thailand, who placed third at the 2nd Asia Pacific Student Cup.