Ever-present Yazid Yasin reaches 400 S.League appearances

The Woodlands Wellington goalkeeper, who made his debut in the league's first season and has kept going on since, says he is lucky not to have suffered any serious injuries so far

Woodlands Wellington goalkeeper Yazid Yasin has seen the highs and lows of Singapore football since making his debut for now-defunct Sembawang Rangers in 1996 at the tender age of 17.

While he was a rising star during his time, he was limited to only a single appearance with the national team in a friendly match against New Zealand in 1999 during an era when the country boasted goalkeeping legends such as Rezal Hassan, Effendy Subtu and Adi Saleh. 

With Rezal officially hanging up his boots after being registered in the previous season as Warriors FC's goalkeeping coach and player, Yazid is now the sole survivor from the inaugural campaign to still be actively playing professional football.

The 34-year-old achieved a milestone on July 16 when he made an incredible 400th S.League appearance in the Rams' 5-2 victory over the Courts Young Lions at the Woodlands Stadium. 

“It feels good to come this far!” Yazid told Goal Singapore.

“I have been lucky with no serious injuries and that is the most important thing that has allowed me to play this long.” 

While Yazid may not be able to recall much about his S.League debut, he fondly remembers the time when he played as a striker for Sembawang.

“One of the best memories I had was when I played as an outfield player against Woodlands in 1996,” the ex-Home United and Geylang International star chuckled.

“I started on the bench and we got a lot of injuries during the match, so I had to come on in the last 10 minutes and play as a striker for the club.”

Woodlands, who were wooden spoonists last year, are currently in fourth position after 18 rounds in the league and look set to equal their best-ever finish of third spot, which was achieved in both 1997 and 2005.