Saturday, April 16, 2016

Australia on 9th Heaven ...

 In the Azlan Shah Cup final, Australia beat India 4-0 for their ninth gold medal.
  The World No 1 got their goals off Thomas Craig (25th, 35th) and Matt Gohdes (43rd, 57th).
  Australia are the early favourites to play in the final of the Rio de Janeiro.

Another Malaysian sob story...

NEW Zealand beat Malaysia to the bronze in the 25th Edition of the Azlan Shah Cup in a tensed shoot-out, after the match ended 3-3 in Ipoh Saturday.
  The Kwis scored all five, while Fitri Shaari missed the last shoot-out to bow out 5-4.
   Coach Stephen van Huizen's men, who finished at the bottom last year, had plenty of time to kill off the match after taking a 2-0 lead by the 11th minute.
  But they toyed around with New Zealand who came back strongly to draw level at 2-2. Malaysia again took the lead, only to be taken into a shoot-out with one minute remaining.
  Ramadan Rosli (4th) and Fitri Shaari (11th) made it 2-0, Hayden Phillips (27th) and Kane Russell (43rd) made it 2-2.
  Shahril Saabah (43rd) brought momentary cheers to the Malaysian side, but Russel (59th) had the last laugh.
  "I'am extremely disappointed for the boys to finish they way they did because they played some good hockey against higher ranked teams in this tournament.
  "We held (world no 8) New Zealand 3-3 in the pool, and again 3-3 today (yesterday) but in a shoot-out there is no more guarantee," said Van Huizen.
  Malaysia used both their goalkeepers yesterday -- Hafizuddin Othman for four quarters and Hairi Rahman for the shoot-out.
  Both of them displayed moments of brilliance, followed by moments of madness.
  "We tried both the goalkeepers equally in this tournament and I believe they will become better players by facing more experienced opponents in the long run."
  For the record, Malaysia's No 1 goalkeeper S. Kumar was left out of this tournament due to injury.
  New Zealand coach Colin Batch lauded his players self-believe.
  "We were 0-2 down, but my players kept believing in themselves and the end result is very pleasing as we prepare for the Olympics," said Batch.
  RESULTS Final: Australia x India x; Third-Fourth: Malaysia 3 New Zealand 3 (New Zealand win 5-4 in shoot-out); Fifth-Sixth: Canada 1 Pakistan 3.

May the Force be with with them...

 Four national players will serve the country in a different uniform soon.
 National skipper Razie Rahim and midfielder Nabil Fiqri; and national women's players Farah Ayuni Yahya and Noor Hasliza Ali will be reporting or Police Inspectors training with the Royal Malaysian Police on May 8.
  MHC vice president and coaching committee chairman Datuk Ow Soon Kooi was instrumental in convincing the players to join the Force.
  Being a former police inspector himself, having donned national colours for 11 years and captaining the team for four years, Soon Kooi is well aware of the fact that having a good career will help the players develop their game.
   "This will give them a professional career and life after their playing days are over," said Soon Kooi.

India pull out of Sultan of Johor Cup...

INDIA yesterday withdrew from the Sultan Johor Cup, even though they had confirmed to play in the tournament on Oct 31-Nov 6 in Johor Baru.
  Tournament organisers Johor HA, perplexed with the sudden withdrawal. have invited Japan instead.
  "It is surprising that India withdrew from tournament after confirming their entry. They have been regulars since its inception in 2011," said JHA deputy president Manjit Singh is also the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) vice-president.
  "I have no idea why they withdrew, its a decision only known to Hockey India."
  The tournament will be a six-team affair again this year and those who have confirmed are Japan, England, New Zealand, Pakistan Australia and Malaysia.
  For the record Britain beat India in a shoot-out in last years final.
  Malaysia are expected to field a development squad coached by Wallace Tan since the junior team was disbanded after failing to qualify for the Junior World Cup.