National Team - Lionesses ● May 28, 2024

Lionesses fall to Garuda Pertiwi in away friendly


Singapore defender Syazwani Ruzi in action, May 2024. 


SINGAPORE, 28 MAY 2024 – A spirited display from the Singapore Women’s National Team was not enough to overcome their formidable Indonesian opponents, who emerged victorious with a commanding 5-1 scoreline in an ‘A’ international friendly played at the Gelora Bung Karno Madya Stadium.


The 109th-ranked Garuda Pertiwi, buoyed by a passionate 2939-strong home crowd, proved to be a challenging opponent for the Lionesses. From the outset, Indonesia dominated the early exchanges, creating numerous scoring opportunities that tested Singapore’s defence. Their hard work paid off, and in the 11th minute, Indonesian midfielder Rosdilah Siti Nurrohmah set up forward Marsela Awi from the right for a precise finish.


Singapore midfielder Dorcas Chu (pictured in blue jersey number 20) scored her second international goal, May 2024.


The Lionesses did not let the early setback faze them and worked to retaliate quickly. Nine minutes later, midfielder Dorcas Chu seized a header opportunity from a corner by teammate Venetia Lim, notching her second international goal.


From there on, the intensity between both teams heightened. Forward Farhanah Ruhaizat fired a shot in the 31st minute, only to be denied by an agile save from Indonesian keeper Fani. On the other end of the pitch, Indonesian forward Baiq Amiatun attempted to seize her opportunity once she entered the penalty box, but her attempt was swiftly intercepted by Singapore custodian Beatrice Tan. With both teams making attempts at goal, their offensive onslaughts were thwarted, leading to a deadlock of 1-1 at half-time.


Singapore midfielder Venetia Lim in action, May 2024.


The second period saw the Lionesses found themselves up against a determined Indonesian side, steadfastly denying Singapore any chance of a goal. In the 58th minute, defender Syazwani Ruzi collided with another Indonesian player, awarding Singapore a free-kick opportunity. Venetia stepped up to take the shot, only to have it swiftly cleared by the Indonesian defence. Despite creating more chances, including a near-miss by Farhanah in the 60th minute, the Lionesses couldn’t find the back of the net. Indonesia capitalised when local star player, 15-year-old Claudia Scheunemann, unleashed a long-range rocket from outside the penalty box in the 64th minute, bringing the score to 2-1.


The Indonesians kept up the pace without pause, leaving the Lionesses little respite  – Marsela capitalised on the momentum, scoring her second goal a minute later with a powerful volley from the right, deepening Singapore’s deficit.


Singapore defender Putri Syaliza in action, May 2024.


The Lionesses refused to back down, persisting in their efforts to find a breakthrough. Yet, fate had other plans.


In the 70th minute, Venetia’s free-kick came agonisingly close to finding the net, only to be denied by Prihatini’s acrobatic save. Shortly after, a foul by Singapore substitute Irsalina Irwan on Claudia resulted in a penalty for Indonesia, which Claudia confidently converted past Beatrice in the 74th minute for her second goal of the match. Farhanah’s valiant effort with a fierce shot from the left flank ten minutes later, unfortunately, was also not enough to break through the resilient Indonesian defence.


Singapore goalkeeper Beatrice Tan in action, May 2024. 


The fifth and final blow was struck five minutes into injury time, as Indonesia’s Reva Oktaviani sealed their dominant win.


Coach Karim admitted that the final 25 minutes of the match determined the final outcome as his team faced challenges: “We took calculated risks by fielding two strikers and one attacking midfielder, aiming to bolster our offensive capabilities. While we made some mistakes, these games serve as important opportunities for growth and learning. Nonetheless, I am pleased with the fighting spirit displayed by the team.”


Coach Karim Bencherifa during the match, May 2024. 


He added, “I think this match provided us with numerous valuable lessons, both for ourselves and for Indonesia. The scores tested our mental strength, and we will draw upon this experience to continue evolving and refining our approach.”


There were some positives to take away as 15-year-old defender Qarissa Putri Ramadhani made her first start and earned her third cap. Additionally, all UTR scholarship recipients – Chloe, Natasha, and Irsalina – except for Ardhra Arul, who suffered a head injury, gained valuable minutes in the game.


15-year-old Qarissa Putri made her first start, May 2024.


Singapore: Beatrice Tan (GK), Syazwani Ruzi, Putri Nur Syaliza (Irsalina Irwan 73’), Qarissa Putri Ramadhani (Sitianiwati Rosielin 73’), Rosnani Azman, Dhaniyah Qasimah (Natasha Naszri 56’), Dorcas Chu, Venetia Lim, Mastura Jeilani, Nicole Liim (Chloe Koh HT), Farhanah Ruhaizat
Subs: Elizabeth Tan, Haziqah Haszman, Angelyn Pang, Khairunnisa Anwar, Ho Hui Xin, Nadhra Aqilah