Malaysia TNB CUP 2021
UNIKL – THT MEET IN THE FINAL
UniKL and Terengganu Hockey Team (THT) will meet in the final of the TNB Cup 2021 after both teams set aside the challenge of their opponents in the second semi-final match at the National Hockey Stadium tonight.
2021 final is a repeat of last year’s final which saw UniKL lift the championship. UniKL advanced after beating TNB 3-1 to qualify for the final with an aggregate of 4-1.
The TNB champion of the Malaysia Hockey League (Premier) 2021 had to face stiff opposition from TNB in the first three quarters before denying TNB a chance with three goals in the fourth quarter.
TNB’s opportunity seemed open when Muhammad Shamir finished the opportunity ahead of UniKL goalkeeper, Adrian Andy.
However, UniKL started to bounce back in the fourth quarter with Muhammad Hafiz Zainol opening an important goal to save UniKL through a finish from a penalty corner kick in the 46th minute.
Muhammad Marhan Jalil excelled with a goal in the 53rd minute while Muhammad Razie Abd Rahim added to his goal collection and finalized the final ticket with a direct flick in the 59th minute.
THT, which was disappointed by UniKL last year, defeated Maybank 2-1 to qualify for the final for the third year in a row with an aggregate of 4-1.
The East Coast giants clearly dominated the movement throughout the 60 minutes of the match with a neat game without giving Maybank much opportunity to launch an attack.
THT coach K. Rajan’s plan to press and find a real victory came when Luqmannul Hakim Ahmad Shukran completed a penalty corner shot as early as the third minute.
“We are aware that Maybank has come down with a plan to attack all the way. Our strategy is to just wait and counterattack and force them to make mistakes, ”he explained.
Maybank responded to equalize in the 24th minute through Alfarico Lance Liau Jr.’s field goal.
However, Muhammad Sufi Ismat Rohulami ensured a comfortable victory and aggregate for THT when he scored a goal in the 39th minute to ensure the ticket to the final belonged to THT.
“The important task now is to ensure adequate preparation for the final match and the players will undergo final training this Friday to finalize the strategy,” said Rajan.
Maybank coach Azrul Effendy Bistamam was clearly disappointed as there were several opportunities wasted by his coaching squad.
“We will be preparing again for the third place and the challenge now is to raise the spirits of the players,” he said.