SEA Games’ Golden Boot Holders: What happened to them?
SEA Games 2015: The Three Hotshots
The latest edition of the Games resulted in a dominant Thailand team claim the gold medal at a canter.
In the Golden Boot stakes, three players tied for top spot with five goals apiece.
Despite playing primarily as a left-back, Myanmar’s Sithu Aung caught the eye with his adventurous forays down the wing.
The 20-year-old now plies his trade with Yadanabon Football Club in Myanmar and will again feature in this year’s edition of the Games, captaining the side.
Sharing top spot was Vietnam’s winger Vo Huy Toan. Blessed with an abundance of pace, the 24-year-old was one of Vietnam’s star men in the tournament.
The left winger plays for SHB Da Nang FC in Vietnam’s top tier domestic league. He is best known for his patriotic goal celebrations where he whips out a mini Vietnam flag stored in his shin pads.
Thailand’s Chananan Pombubppha rounds off the goal-getting trio. Chananan, who netted in the finals for the rampant War Elephants now features for Thai Premier League side Suphanburi, after joining from Muang Thong United.
He has six goals in the league this season and features alongside former S-League alumnus Nicolas Velez. However, he has not been called up to the senior squad since the tournament.
SEA Games 2013: When Six Scored Three
Six players shared the title of top scorer in the 2013 edition of the Games, held in Myanmar. Each bagged three goals.
Prior to the tournament, Malaysia’s Ahmad Hazwan Bakri became the youngest player to score a hat-trick at the international level in a 6-0 rout over Sri Lanka.
His three goals in the SEA Games tournament came through another hat-trick in a 4-1 win over Laos, but the 25-year-old failed to score thereafter. Hazwan went on to be a stand-out performer for Selangor FA in the Malaysian Super League, and was named as the MSL’s Most Valuable Player of 2016. The 25-year-old now features for Johor Darul Takzim (JDT).
Also scoring three goals was Myanmar’s Kyaw Ko Ko, following up his exploits in the 2011 Games where he netted five goals.
A prolific scorer in the domestic league, Kyaw is hugely popular in Myanmar but was omitted by head coach Gerd Zeise in last year’s Suzuki Cup, the German describing him as a ‘’virus’’. The Yangon United forward has since been recalled to the squad and scored in last month’s Asian Cup qualifier against Macau.
The duo of Hariss Harun and Sahil Suhaimi were key to the success of Singapore’s under-23 team. Hariss and Sahil netted six of the Lions’ seven goals as they finished with a respectable bronze.
25-year-old Sahil went on to feature for the now defunct Lions XII, scoring two late goals in a historic FA Cup final win against Kelantan in 2015. After a spell with Geylang International, Sahil signed for Tampines Rovers, and then joined English Premier League side Burnley for a month-long training stint this year. He is now playing for MSL side Sarawak FA.
While Sahil has yet to cement a starting position in the national squad, Hariss has been a mainstay. The combative midfielder became the highest paid footballer in Singapore history after joining JDT in 2013.
Impressing during his time in Malaysia, the Lions’ vice-captain was all set for a one-year loan deal Group 3 Segunda Division B outfit L'Hospitalet but the move fell through due to administrative issues. He currently plays for Home United.
Thai centre-back Pravinwat Boonyong also finished the tournament on three goals. Pravinwat made his debut for the senior squad a year later, and has played sporadically, with his last appearance coming in an international friendly against Myanmar last August.
Reunited with former national coach Kiatisuk Senamuang, Pravinwat is now playing for Thai Premier League side Port FC, on loan from Bangkok Glass.
Rounding off the list is Vietnam’s Mac Hong Quan. Big things were expected of Mac, having begun his career with Sparta Prague’s B squad. The attacking midfielder then joined domestic side Thanh Hoa before his Sea Games campaign.
He was released the following year for ‘’not playing as well as expected’’ and currently plays in the top tiered domestic league for Than Quang Ninh. Mac is better known for his dashing good looks – read 14.4k followers on Instagram.