RAIN FAILS TO DAMPEN MALAYSIA’S SPIRIT

SOUTH AFRICA 2 MALAYSIA 7

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Match No 9 – South Africa v Malaysia which was postponed on Nov 4th after 14 minute with SA leading 1-0 because of unplayable pitch and heavy rain.

It all boils down to the match against Japan tomorrow in Malaysia’s last Group match, where they need only a draw to book a place in the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup final but national A. Arul Selvaraj says his players will not be pulling the brakes.

“Our team is known for the fire and workrate in them. This is exactly what has got us the desired results in the last two matches,” said Arul after the 7-2 routing of South Africa.

“Yes, our target first against South Africa was to get a two goal win cushion, but the players never stop working and got this great win.

“But we need to manage ourselves better in the final quarter and we hope to do that against Japan.

“We have good results against Japan in the past, but that is all past record. We have to take this as a new game and play our normal fast paced game with everyone working hard.”

One tonight’s match Arul said it was difficult having to stop play again for more than an hour, but the players did not let that affect them although warming up to be in top gear again is a challenge.

South Africa resumed the match from their half but Malaysia immediately pressured to threaten their opponents on three occasions in the remaining 1 minute 41 second on the clock.

Africa were leading with a 12th minute field goal scored by Cameron Yves Norman le Froster on Friday when the game was halted and later postponed to today.

Malaysia equalised in the 18th minute when Muhammad Razie Abdul Rahim converted off a penalty corner.

Then on, their went overdrive to get goals from Razie off a penalty flick (20th min), and field goals by Nik Muhammad Aiman Nik Rozemi (23th) and  Azrai Aizad Abu Kamal (24th), for halftime score of a comfortable 4-1 lead.

It was a great lead up to the crucial match against Japan tomorrow as Razie will be attaining is magical 300 international cap.

The rain stopped after 40 minutes and work to drain out the water from the pitch with rakes began.

Both teams came back on the pitch one hour ten minutes after the scheduled start for the secondhalf and began their warm-up for ten minutes before the secondhalf began after a one hour twenty minutes forced breather at halftime.

It  South Africa who were the aggressors and successful reduced the deficit with penalty corner goal off Connor Beauchamp in the 35th minute.

But Malaysia jolted by the goal responded with Sabahan Shello Silverius scoring four minutes later for fourth goal in the tournament to emerge the top scorer tilldate.

Captain Najmi Jazlan put Malaysia further in a comfortable zone when he scored off a penalty corner in the 43rd minute to lead 6-2.

Goalkeeper Muhammad  Hafizzudin Othman who has been playing a key role to prevent South Africa from scoring had to be replaced in the 43rd minute after he was injured in a goal mouth melee for Mohd Zaimi Mat Derus.

Razie capped a fine outting with a hattrick of a penalty corner in the 51st minute to complete Malaysia’s rout for goal number seven.

South Africa’s coach Garreth Ewing said his team played poorly and but Malaysia on the other hand did well and were clinical in their penalty corners.

FOOTNOTE:

A 30 second moment of silence was observed before the resumption of South Africa and Malaysia as mark of respect to the 14-year-old Bill Wolfson Lianie from Sarawak who passed away this morning in Ipoh.

Bill was undergoing a goalkeeper clinic under the National Hockey Development programme (NHDP) conducted by national goalkeeper coach S. Kumar, held at the NHDP Academy Hockey Raja Ashman Shah, Ipoh from Nov 5-6 Nov, in conjunction with the ongoing Sultan Azlan Shah Cup 2022 Men’s International Hockey tournament.

He was accompanied to the clinic by chief youth coach for Sarawak , Wilina Mac Carina Wilson.

Bill a student of SMK Penrissen Kuching Sarawak and under the NHDP district programme in Sarawak, was said to have had a seizure attack in the morning and was brought to Hospital Raja Permaisuri Bainun, Ipoh, but efforts to revive him failed and he was pronounced death.

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