The City Boys were given a long 4 month break after an intensive season that saw them crowned the Tri-Universities Champions, and they have since resumed pre-season training at their training grounds at Gotham City.
With less than 2 days to go to the Blacks Midnight 10s, the selection for the Midnight 10s squad was announced at Yio Chu Kang Stadium. With a turn out of almost 20 over players, the squad was announced by Coach Harry Mason together with President Sherman Yeo and Vice President Chew Yin Xiang aka Mouth. The Blacks Midnight 10s looks to raise the curtains for the 2008/09 season. It will not be easy for them as they are grouped with SCC, Blacks RFC and an unknown Hong Kong side by the name of Tequila Mockingbirds in the preliminary round.The City Boys who were last year's Bowl Champions (beating Bedok Kings 7-0 in an thrilling encounter) will be hoping to either defend their Bowl or perhaps better their performance. Nevertheless, the tournament serves to get as players to get as much game time as possible and for the team to have a chance to play together with some old and new faces coming back into the team.
Veteran and former SMU president Daniel Marc Chow has been named as the skipper for the tournament and will be looking to lead the side out to some victory. In his words, one of the main goals he has for this tournament is to set the record straight with local rugby club, Blacks, who defeated the City Boys last year in the very same tournament, relegating the City Boys to the Bowl tournament. He signed off with SMUrugby News saying, "Although we havent played much together this season, the squad has quite a bit of talent. We're going to go out there and give it our best shot and hopefully we will get the result we're looking for."
The squad will feature the 'golden oldies' of SMUrugby as well their new summer acquisitions with the likes of Bryan Ng and Derek Chan. With the departure of several experienced members of the squad including Lorenzo Anton Escano, Desmond Wee, Lim Wei Ming and Darkness to Europe for a 6 month loan deal, onlookers have questioned whether the current SMU squad will be able cope in their 1st tournament of the season.
When spoken to during an interview after last night's training, Josiah Goh, SMU's current half-back, who played an instrumental role in securing last season's Tri-Uni title, insists that the seniors members of the squad such as DMC, Alex Chew, Lionel Poh and Amos Siow will supply the necessary quality and experience to put up a good show on Friday night. He added, 'At the moment we have new players coming in but we haven't played much yet, we will see what happens. We have quite a couple of quality players and that is going to help us.' Alex Chew, the squad's Vice-Captain for the tournament as well team's socialite, gave his one-liner while rushing off to Zouk for his weekly dose of Mambo Jambo, 'For me, we don't really think about our opponents. It is up to us to work really hard this coming weekend.'
Here is the final squad for Blacks Midnight 10s:
Vickneswaran S/o Sellathurai
Daniel Marc Chow (Captain)
Alexandre Louis Jean Hubert Castelnau (debut for SMU/International Exchange student)
Derek Chan (debut for SMU)
Alex Chew (Vice-Captain)
Bryan Ng (debut for SMU)
Sylvain Guy Pierre Buale (debut for SMU/International Exchange student)
Wang En Jian (debut for SMU)
Tafadzwa L Marasha
We here at SMUrugby News wish them all the best for Blacks Midnight 10s. The tournament will take place from 29th August - 30th August. So come down to the St Andrew Artificial Rugby Turf to catch the Blacks Midnight 10s and watch the City Boys compete. The City Boys first game will be at 7.20pm and will be likely to take on their latest kit for the season.