Official Website of Brunei Darussalam National Olympic Council
Thais break Bruneian hearts Part II
Saturday, November 19, 2011

Thailand have proved to be Brunei's bogey team at the 26th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games here.

The Sultanate were knocked out of the men's sabre team event in the first round (quarter-finals) yesterday after a 45-27 loss to Thailand at the University of Indonesia here.

In the men's individual sabre event on Tuesday, the country's best fencer, Huzaimi Abd Kassim (pic), also fell to a Thai losing his round of 16 tie 15-8 to Thailand's Ruangrit Haekerd.

Yesterday's team competition saw Huzaimi joined by Mohammad Yunos Hj Hamid who also competed in the individual sabre but failed to progress past the pool stage and Ak Mohamad Shah AlMusta'in Billah, who only saw action yesterday since each country is only allowed two entries in the individual sabre.

Phattana Thepmalap, Sansern Ngernrungr and Wiradech Kothny laced up for Thailand.

The format of play required the trio to face off against each of the Thais, making for a total of nine games. The first fencer to win five points won the game, meaning that Thailand won all of their matches.

Despite the result and the fact the same trio won bronze in the same event the last time fencing was contested at the Games in Korat, Thailand, two years ago Rocky Poerawinata was happy with his charges' performance.

"It was good. I'm not disappointed at all they did their best," said the national coach.

"They were prepared mentally and physically. It was just that we weren't successful.

"Our losses were all by small margins. It's not as if we can't put up a fight. Even the Thai coach said we have improved.

"Maybe if in future we compete in more tournaments results will come our way," added the Indonesian, who has coached the team since 2002.

Poerawinata turned philosophical when asked whether the team were dejected at not finishing with a medal this time around.

"It's a competition so of course, there will be a winner and a loser but you always want to win," said the coach.

Questions about mental preparation had been asked of each of the eight national teams here in the Indonesian capital though Poerawinata didn't feel the fencers had any such problems yesterday.

"They weren't nervous at all," he said.

Malaysia's Muhammad Radhi Hasim, Liong Ming Chang and Yu Peng Kean beat Vietnam's Nguyen Van Quynh, To Van Hop and Vu Thanh An 45-37 to win gold.

Yesterday's fencing result means that Brunei's interest now only lies in wushu, sepak takraw and kempo.

Courtesy from Brunei Times