Malaysia bounced to a good start in the Asian Rugby Championship (ARC) after winning over Chinese Taipei 46-13 at Kelana Jaya Stadium on Sunday. The host nation had a terrible first half before making a brilliant recovery in the second half.

Malaysia took the lead in the 6th minute from a try by Atunasia Lacadamu Takubu. Chinese Taipei upped their game and pressured Malaysia. They reduced the deficit through a penalty in the 22nd minute taken by Wen-Pao Chiang.

The Malaysians lost their lead three minutes later from a try by Ming-Hsien Ho before Min-Ching Chiu added another. The host struggled throughout the first half against the confidence Taiwanese. However, Etonia Vaqa Saukuru brought Malaysia back into the game two minutes before the break to keep the score close with 13-10.

Coach Lee Nyuk Fah made a little tactical change in the second half and saw Malaysia transformed into a totally different team. The players regained their confidence and started to show their true colours. It took less than three minutes for Malaysia to get back into the lead. Tengku Mohd Fariz Tengku Roslan tried and Sae Faalupega‘s conversion were enough to cheer the fan at the Kelana Jaya Stadium.

Etonia was on the scoresheet again with another try in the 48th minute. Chinese Taipei seem to have ran out of idea against the new Malaysia. The host got another try from Atunasia in the 61st minute. Four minutes later, Etonia crossed the touch line for a third time in the match. Malaysia was in complete control of the match, and Chinese Taipei could not stop their raging opponent. Another two tries by Faat Hor Rozi Ismail in the 68th minute and Mohd Syahir Asraf Rosli three minutes before the end sealed Malaysia’s win.

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