MALAYSIA AND SINGAPORE CELEBRATE 40th SAUDARA CUP

One of the meanings of the word ‘saudara’ in Bahasa Melayu is ‘kinship’. This was the founding ideal on which the Saudara Cup, an annual three-day match played between Malaysia and Singapore, was started in 1970. This year was the 40th consecutive match and the Malaysian and Singapore Cricket Associations marked the occasion in Johor, on the border between the two countries.

Johor Cricket Council (JCC) President Dato’ Dr. Harjit Singh said, “The Saudara Cup has grown from strength to strength and apart from building close relationships, it is a living legacy of the strong traditions that bind cricket in both Malaysia and Singapore.”

Of the 40 matches played, Malaysia has won 12, Singapore eight and the remainder have been drawn. This year’s match formed part of the International Cricket Council’s ‘Catch the Spirit’ centenary celebrations.

45 former players from both countries, some of whom played in the first game in 1970, came to watch this year’s match. Current Deputy President of the Malaysian Cricket Association, Dato’ Dr. Amarjit Singh, who played in the competition from 1979 to 1989, praised the Saudara Cup for “invoking the true spirit of the game.”

The weight of history, Singapore Captain Christopher Janik and Malaysia Captain Suhan Kumar with the solid silver Saudara Cup; behind them Dato’ Dr. Harjit Singh and the Crown Prince of Johor.

Singapore Cricket Association President Imran Khwaja, a Saudara Cup player from 1975 to 1994 watched this year’s game at the Johor Cricket Academy Oval and said that, “There has always been a special relationship shared between Singapore and Malaysia and it will only strengthen with this match. Cricket stands for the finest virtues in us all as human beings.”

The official souvenir program with scorecards from 1970 up to 2007 was presented to all who attended.

Dr. Alex Delikan (Malaysia)
- RHB/OB
- Played and captained Malaysia in the first Saudara Cup until 1973.
“My best experience comes from the fact that I have played for both Malaysia and Singapore. The Saudara Cup should continue as a tradition of how the game should be played. Three-day games help nurture the cricket brain.”

 

S. Sivalingam (Singapore)
- RHB/OB, Saudara Cup from 1971 to 1991
“My most memorable moment in the Saudara Cup came in 1980 when I dismissed the last Malaysian batsman and Singapore won by 107 runs. This is a very special cup because it can only be played by the nationals. There is a special bond between these two teams and three-day games test the strength of teams. It is nice to once again witness ‘champagne cricket’.”

 

Hector Durairatnam (Malaysia)
- RHB/RM, Captain Saudara Cup from 1974 to 1979, Took 12 wickets in the 1981 Saudara Cup
“I have built great friendships over the years whilst playing in the Saudara Cup and I hope this format is continued. These are the kind of tournaments which brings players as well as officials together to celebrate the game of cricket.”

 

M. Neethiananthan (Singapore)
- RHB/WK, Saudara Cup 1974 to 1996.
“To beat Malaysia in the Saudara Cup is a special feeling. We look forward to the game every year and realise how important this three-day game is in bolstering relations between our two nations.”

 

Haris Abu Bakar (Malaysia)
- RHB/WK, Saudara Cup from 1979 to 1994
“I am always proud to play for my country and the Saudara Cup brings back good memories. The longer form of the game should be maintained as it helps strengthens basics. This three-day game also helps brings the cricketing communities of Malaysia and Singapore together.”

 

Dato’ Dr. Harjit Singh (Malaysia)
- RHB/RMF Captain, 1980 Saudara Cup
“The Saudara Cup strengthens the cultural ties between Malaysia and Singapore. This form of the game should continue as cricket is full of history and traditions. This is the oldest trophy between these two nations and sport is one way to maintain and build on our relations.”

True to form, in the long-established Causeway spirit, this year’s match ended in a keenly contested draw.

The Stonor Shield was also revived this year in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur after a gap of 15 years. “The Shield itself might be missing, since the last time it was played, but I’m sure we’ll find it. This year’s new competition has eight teams playing in a 40-over league and we’ll keep it going for the foreseeable future,” says Selangor Cricket Association Vice-President Charlie Chelliah.

Saudara Cup 2009

Malaysia v Singapore at Johor Cricket Academy
MATCH DRAWN
Malaysia won the toss and chose to bat
Malaysia: 358 for 9 off 75 overs (D. Muralitharan 105, S. Navaratnam 136; P. Raja 4-53, D. Mulewa 3-122)
Singapore: 165 all out (P. Raja 58, D. Mulewa 74; E. Aziz 3-51, S. Nizam 4-39) and 226-6 (P. Raja 32, C. Janik 36, A. Param 61, V. Chandrasekar 68*; E. Aziz 4-71)

Related:
Malaysia Looks Ahead
Malaysia Country Profile
Singapore Country Profile

Filed Oct 13th, 2009