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Canada crowned champions on day of the underdog

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Canada capped a day of upsets by beating the USA to lift the HSBC Singapore Rugby Sevens Cup. Following Kenya’s win in the previous year, the Singapore Sevens is quickly becoming the place for maiden series wins.

Canada started the weekend with two wins and a loss to Olympic Gold medallists Fiji in the group stage. However they started the second day in good form shocking New Zealand 26-14 in the quarter-final before defeating England in the semi-final. 

rugby sevens

Team Canada players celebrate their victory. Photo: Sport Singapore

In the final, the Canadians got off to good start against their North American rivals and never looked back, outpacing the Americans 26-19.

The day before, Singapore beat causeway rivals Malaysia to claim the Southeast Asia 7s title. The hosts took an early lead but Malaysia equalised before halftime. After the break Singapore was unstoppable, eventually winning 19-7. 

team singapore rugby

Singapore beat causeway rivals Malaysia to claim the Southeast Asia 7s title. Photo: David Chew/ Team Nila

It was not just rugby action on the weekend as SportSG staff and SportCares youth, along with students from Temasek Polytechnic (TP), joined forces with Singapore Rugby to raise funds for SportCares.

The Rugby Singapore Official merchandise store was manned by intrepid SportCares youth who overcame their shyness to drive the sales of the team goods. The organisers also pledged that fifty percent of the profit would go towards SportCares.

“Temasek Polytechnic is a partner of SportCares. They came on board to provide support, not just in training but in the running the merchandise stores,” said SportCares manager Fayeruz Surahman.

“They (the TP students) get to put in practice the lesson they’ve learnt in school. They see this as an opportunity for their students to mentor and provide support for the SportCares youth,” he continued.

Temasek Polytechnic student Amelia Chua agreed, she said: “We gathered together and had a lesson with the SportCares youth. We taught them how to serve customers and how to deal with customers.

“In retail, the customer is always right. We have the goal in mind to satisfy the customer, so try not to argue,” she added when asked about her response to difficult customers. 

sportcares at rugby sevens

SportCares youth manning the Rugby Singapore Official merchandise store. Photo: Sport Singapore

Two SportCares youth who benefited from this experience were sisters Wan Amirah and Wan Nabilah.

“We have to be happy and patient with the customers. When dealing with difficult customers, I will try control my feelings and stay calm. I just think positive and try to sell the product and don’t get angry,” said Wan Amirah.

“I can meet many people from other countries. I learn how to be more confident in speaking and interact with people there,” added Wan Nabilah.

SportCares manager Fayeruz stressed that although there were some initial teething problems, the instruction by the TP students, and in particular, the role-playing sessions, helped the SportCares youth get over their initial apprehension towards the important role.

“For SportCares, this is a good opportunity for us to showcase that our youth can punch above their own weight. They are put in a situation where they are not familiar with and even with their limited training, they learnt a lot about sales and improved their communication skills.

“It is a good showcase to prove that they have grown and that they can be contributing members of society,” he added.


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