New to the island and fancy getting stuck into a spot of sport in Singapore? Team sports aren’t just a good way to get fit, but they’re a cracking way to network and make a good set of friends. Check out the below for 15 sports across the island and how to get in touch with existing teams.
The Singapore American Football League, which marks its 40th anniversary this year, is open to all 15- to 18-year-old boys of any skill level. The season runs August through November, and new players are welcome. For more information or to sign up, log on to football.sacac.com.
Australian Rules Football might be thing of mystery to first-time viewers or players, but it’s a beloved code of countless Australians – including expats in Singapore! The Singapore Australian Football Club (singaporewombats.com) is known locally as the Wombats. They’re part of an Asian League that travels to play in China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia and the Philippines. Player membership fees are $300 a year or you can become a social member for $80.
With so many British, French, Irish, South African, Australian and Kiwi expats in Singapore, it’s not surprising there’s a lively rugby community here. Wanderers RFC has four teams ranging from highly competitive to the “odds and sods”. Bedok Kings have four senior teams and an Under-20 team. Island-wide there are rugby leagues for men and women. There’s also the Bucks Rugby Club, which offers touch too. To find out more about joining a team, contact Rugby Singapore.
The world’s favourite game is also Singapore’s most popular sport; just check out the number of cars displaying Manchester United paraphernalia! The ESPZEN (espzen.com) website lists both 11-a-side and Indoor Futsal (five-a-side) teams looking for players of all levels and they run a soccer school too. Contact Singapore’s professional league, the S.League (sleague.com) to find out about trials for the top island clubs. Another popular one with expats is the Raffles Rangers.
In Singapore, this is not for the faint-hearted. Heavy traffic and drivers who are seemingly oblivious to road markings can make cycling a slightly hazardous pursuit, so most clubs meet in the early hours. If you’re a member of ANZA, you can join the 350-member ANZA Cycling club (anzacycling.com), which meets at 6am most days. Pedallers used to the peloton should seek out Joyriders (joyriders.sg). This welcoming bunch holds training sessions at 5am every day, except Mondays.
Baseball is very popular in Singapore. Friendly amateur club the Typhoons has eight teams in the league and practises on weekends at the Kallang fields. If you’re a big hitter or you have a fast arm, seek out the Singapore Baseball and Softball Association (sbsa.org.sg). It runs the island’s most advanced league for men and women and can help you organise tryouts for the best teams.
In 1819, when Sir Thomas Stamford claimed Singapore for the British, he also set up a pitch and some stumps. Thirty years later, the island had its first cricket team at the Singapore Cricket Club (scc.org.sg). Because this is a social club with various sporting teams of different abilities and a club house right in the CBD, a sports membership costs $2,000 a year. Another option is the Ceylon Sports Club (cscsingapore.org.sg), which charges an annual fee of $180. The Singapore Cricket Association (singaporecricket.org) runs competitive leagues, supports women’s and youths’ teams, and can help find the right team for your level.
If you enjoy climbing into a long narrow boat with 21 other oarsmen, then Singapore’s the place to be. The Singapore Dragon Boat Association (sdba.org.sg) hosts an annual festival where corporate and local rowing teams compete. The Singapore Paddle Club (singaporepaddleclub.com) is for outrigger canoeing and dragon boaters, and regularly hosts rookie tasters and training sessions for beginners. The Gaelic Dragons (gaelicdragons.org) train a couple of times a week at Kallang River and welcome newcomers and novices.
Hard to believe, but this little island has over a dozen golf courses. One of the most popular courses for casual players is Keppel Club (keppelclub.com.sg), where you can book tee-offs online without being a member. For a full list of courses and to find buddies, contact the Singapore Golf Association (sga.org.sg). The island’s most prestigious course, Sentosa Golf Club (sentosagolf.com), hosts the Barclays Singapore Open, where the world’s finest players tee off. Membership can set you back over $200,000.
With over 300 squads to choose from, it’s easy to find a netball team in Singapore that’s right for you. Bedok Kings (bedokkings.com) has seven teams, five women’s and two mixed, which play at all levels of ability, from beginner to highly competitive. Membership fees are $350. The Singapore Cricket Club also fields several teams in league competitions (scc.org.sg). To find out about trials with the league teams, contact Netball Singapore ( netball.org.sg).
Both field hockey and ice hockey are played here but the former is much more popular – probably because ice lakes form in Singapore only every 20,000 years or so. Tornados Hockey Club (tornadoshockey.org.sg) has three men’s teams and two women’s sports teams, which practise at Hockey Village. Also contact the Singapore Hockey Federation (singaporehockey.org), which runs competitive men’s and women’s leagues.
Skaters with sticks who enjoy the cold can contact the Singapore Ice Hockey Association (siha.org.sg). Also try the Singapore Blizzards (singaporeblizzards.com).
Most social clubs and many condos have tennis courts, so finding somewhere to play is not difficult. But if you’re looking for a partner, check out the Tennis Friendz Network (tfntennis.com). This is a forum that lists buddies to play with, equipment to buy and tournaments to enter. For a game and a natter, drop in on one of the British Association’s (britishassociation.org.sg) ladies’ tennis sessions, held every Friday morning at the British Club. Get in touch with the Singapore Tennis Association (singtennis.org.sg) to find out about coaching and selection for national leagues.
Whatever your dunking proficiency, get in touch with BBAXN, the Amateur Indoor Basketball League (bbaxn.com). It keeps updated lists of teams looking for both male and female players, from beginners to advanced levels, and for juniors too. Alternately, the Basketball Association of Singapore (bas.org.sg) can put you in touch with a league team for adults or kids. Try the Singapore Supras too!
Hash House Harriers (HHH) is non-competitive cross-country trail-running club commonly referred to as “a drinking club with a running problem”. Trails are set by one or more runners or “hares”, who mark the route with white flour, toilet paper and/or chalk marks. Runners follow the trail to the end, where food, beer and banter are then dished out in equal measure, either on location or nearby. HHH started in Malaysia in the 1930s and there are now chapters in most countries. It’s a popular activity in Singapore every day of the week. Visitors are welcome and are charged a small guest fee for participating.
Monday: Hash House Harriers (Men only)
Tuesday: Seletar HHH (Men only)
Wednesday: Hash House Harriets (Mixed)
Thursday: Thirsdae HHH (Mixed)
Friday: Lion City Hash (Mixed)
Saturday: Dog Hash (first weekend of the month, 4.30pm)
Sunday: Sunday HHH (Every second Sunday, 5.30pm, sundayhash.org.sg); Hash House Horrors (For kids, every second Sunday, 4.30pm); Singapore Bike Hash.
A final note for those wanting to get started with football, cricket or any of the other pursuits mentioned in our list: many of the country associations and clubs in Singapore have a wide range of sports teams and activities. So, check their websites too for more teams in the sport of your choice.
For more helpful tips, head to our Living in Singapore section.