Eagles’ Trio Flies Geylang Flag High At Selangor
By Kevin Prasad on 11 May 2016
The Singapore Selection side clinched the 2016 Sultan of Selangor (SOS) Cup, after an exhilarating 4-3 penalty shootout victory over the Selangor Selection at Shah Alam Stadium on Saturday night, after the full-time score concluded at a 1-1 stalemate.
With majority of the 18-man Singapore Selection squad representing Home United, it was Geylang International’s trio of Stanely Ng, Amy Recha and Syazwan Buhari who impressed in front of a stellar 75,000–strong crowd.
Despite being a man down after a red card incident, Stanely scored a late equalizer to cancel out Selangor’s R.Gopinathan’s early goal, to force the game to penalties. Then the Eagles’ custodian, Syazwan saved two out of five penalties, to bring the SOS Cup to the Lion City for the first time since 2011.
Though, there were many standout performers – three names in particular topped the billing on this momentous occasion, all of whom represent the men in green and white in the S.League. The fleet-footed striker, Amy Recha offered pace, industry and no shortage of innovation on his flank. The creative yet assiduous midfielder, Stanely was a constant menace with his footwork and caused much frustration to the Red Giants’ defence, while the Eagles’ number one custodian, Syazwan was a mountainous figure in between the posts, all night.
Amy Recha, 24 years old, Forward / Winger
The boyish good looks forward does pack a sucker punch to defenders, with his speedy well-timed runs and a knack of ‘fox in the box’ goal scoring attributes.
Amy may still be a raw diamond, but it is crystal clear that the Singaporean international has the capacity to be a very good finisher. His mazy dribbles and surging runs down the wing into box, is certainly a headache to any opponent. The former GIFC Prime League starlet, has a tendency to refrain from shooting, which an improved sense of judgement should come with more game experience in the S.League.
Amy shared with GIFC Media that he was thrilled and honoured to represent the Eagles for the SOS Cup in Shah Alam Stadium, which presented an amazing atmosphere on top of giving him the goose bumps throughout the night.
“Representing Geylang International at Selangor was truly a privilege and it certainly feels great to be back to the place which I call my ‘second home’ – the Eagles’ Nest. I had a wonderful time during my COE and Prime League days,” said Amy, whom recently signed a one year sponsorship deal with New Balance.
The die-hard Liverpool fan also added that, “This year, the team morale in Geylang is very good but we are not achieving the targeted results. However, we got the ball rolling recently, and I believe if we work our socks off, on and off the pitch, we can clinch some silverware this season. I strongly believe that good things come for those who work hard, not just wait.”
Stanely Ng, 24 years old, Centre-Midfielder / Winger
Much buzz was made earlier this year, when Stanely aka ‘Ah-Chai’ swapped his regular starting spot in the Protectors’ set-up for a spot in the rejuvenated Geylang squad.
Being a strong believer of hard work and a consistent performer in the S.Leauge, Stanely is tipped to make an impact at the Bedok Stadium, where he once plied his trade with the Young Eagles in his Prime League season. He is an intelligent player with great vision and is certainly a one to watch for the future as the Eagles’ need his spark to revive their title aspirations.
Stanely shared with GIFC Media that his call-up alongside the other Eagles, reflects well on the club and it shows that their (Geylang) ‘type’ football is indeed catchy. However, he felt that the whole Singapore Selection team should be given credit, due to their productiveness and determination, to deservingly clinch the SOS championship, as a collective unit.
“To be honest, the Geylang trainings are paying off well, as the equalizing goal came from the training ground. Coach Hasrin and Coach Noor Ali always emphasize on finishing by conducting multiple shooting sessions from the left, entre and right, where one has to cut in and instinctively shoot on target,” said Stanely
The recent Diploma in Mass Communication graduate also added that, “A streak of bleak results has dampen the spirits at the Eagles’ camp. However, with the back-to-back S.League wins and the SOS victory, I am recharged and am ready to give my all for the remainder of the season. Train Hard, Harder & Hardest!”
Syazwan Buhari, 24 years old, Goalkeeper
The rock at the heart of the Singapore Selection’s defence, the young custodian was sensational on Saturday night in denying the Red Giants from creating more than a couple of major chances over the 45 minutes in the second half. The Bedok-based glovesman was extremely calm and guessed the right way to deny Selangor the victory, by producing two magnificent penalty saves in the shootout.
With cat-like reflexes, Syazwan has also been consistent in goal for the Eagles, as he emulates Iker Casillas, by intercepting long range passes, punching out crosses, making several vital blocks and producing fine fingertip saves.
With a full season of first-team football already under his belt at Courts Young Lions, last year, Syazwan is one of the more experienced members of the side at a senior level, despite his youth age.
Syazwan shared with GIFC Media that, he was initially confused after saving Selangor’s last penalty, as he was pondering whether it was over, or do they still need to score one more. However when he saw his goalkeeping coach, Adi Saleh and team-mates running over, he knew that the cup is returning to Singapore soil.
“I feel extremely proud to be able to give a good performance alongside, Ah Chai and Amy, which really reflects well for the club. I would like to thank Coach Hasrin, Noor Ali and Narong for giving me this opportunity to take part in this game, alongside their game-pointers,” said Syazwan, whom recently signed a 1 year sponsorship deal with APD.
The stocky custodian also added, “The SOS outing will certainly spur me on in the S.League, because I learnt a lot of things just by playing one game. In Shah Alam, the pressure is really huge and I definitely learnt how to better handle the pressure, in which will certainly assist me to stay calm during the S.League games.”
*Photos Courtesy of S.League