At an Under-17 Rugby final recently, an incident sparked an on-field brawl which then escalated as the pitch was invaded by players and supporters from both teams.
The brawl was captured by newspapermen who were there to cover the sporting event and in the aftermath, Singaporeans are asking whether there is too much pressure on players to win for their school.
When I read this, I went…what else is new? Seriously, I don’t understand why Singaporeans are so surprised by this incident. It happened before and it will happen again. This is Singapore where winning is everything, not only in sports but in studies for the school rankings as well. I mean we ARE kiasu right?
Here’s my personal experience on the school sporting scene. I was representing my school in basketball. We got to the district final where we faced another team with 2 players who were about at least a head taller than us. In the end we lost. It was not unexpected as the other team was the favourite but here’s the thing. This was in primary school, so it was an Under-12 tournament and we then discovered the 2 players were 14 as they had stayed behind 2 years. Yes, there are schools who used overage players just to win…in a PRIMARY SCHOOL TOURNMENT!
Pressure to win? Of course there is pressure to win. This is Singapore isn’t it?