Indonesia v Guam (05 June 2013)
Score: Indonesia 15 – Guam 33
Following a four-day Team Camp at the army barracks in Bandung, Indonesia faced the perennial challenge of the Guam National Selection in the HSBC Asian 5 Nations Division 3 Semi-final.
The Guam team always present a very physical and aggressive proposition and this year was no different with a hard-running and strong scrimmaging team that had been honed by playing together in New Zealand for six months. The first few scrums were particularly torrid for some of our more naïve and less experienced players and when Guam went 7-0 up after five minutes, many of us feared the worst.
This Indonesian team is made of sterner stuff however and some earth shuddering tackles from Dian Simatupang and Florian Busi made the strong running heavy-weights from Guam think twice. Whilst still struggling with set-piece play in the scrum and line-out, Indonesia started to gain confidence in their defensive and attacking patterns. This meant that despite never being ahead in the game, Indonesia were also never out of touch.
Having had very little opportunity to show his pace behind a retreating pack, scrum-half Yudha Arie was illegally brought down by a Guam player after another great kick-chase. Many may have viewed this as a yellow-card offence and Guam were lucky only to concede a penalty. New fly-half Bobby Sumantri picked himself up after receiving a couple of full-on man-and-ball tackles to put Indonesia on the score board with a well-struck kick.
After periods of sustained pressure, Guam scored a couple of well-worked tries.
Indonesia came back into the game again after a great kick-chase by Yohanes Musi put Guam under pressure and Steve Field timed his interception perfectly. He sprinted 60 meters to score a spectacular break-away try under the posts.
Late in the game Guam pushed ahead and it would have been very easy and understandable for the Indonesian team to have folded at this stage and thrown in the towel. Instead they did the opposite. Indonesia opted to run a couple of penalties both within kicking range, which may have yielded 3 points and were rewarded for their great character and fighting spirit with a well-deserved try by Florian Busi.
Overall the Rhinos displayed an incredible team-spirit and despite a very steep learning curve were a great credit to Indonesian rugby. There is still much work to work on and much learning ahead of Friday’s 3rd/4th play-off fixture with China but there is also much to be positive about. This is a young team of real warriors. To a man, they feel disappointed to have lost to a strong Guam side and are relishing the challenge of taking on the Chinese National Selection on Friday. Ayo Indonesia! Ayo Rhinos!
Bahasa version TBC*