KUALA Lumpur snatched the Malaysian Schools Sports Council (MSSM) Boys’ Under-18 hockey title from the jaws of a fighting Selangor after a dramatic penalty conversion just as the final hooter blew.
KL and Selangor were tied 2-2, and there was just a few seconds remaining in the match when KL made a full press and were rewarded with a penalty stroke.
Substitute Yusof Mat Nor, who only played five minutes in the final, turned hero when he cooly converted the penalty stroke to hand hosts KL the title.
Selangor were the better team in the first half, and took the lead off Syamil Zulkifli in a ninth minute penalty corner, but KL found the equaliser in the 22nd minute off a Saiful Nizam penalty corner.
There were plenty of excitement in the match, and Se langor again took the lead when Shaharul Dennis scored a field goal.
But the goal failed to crack KL, who came back for the second time to draw level at 2-2 in the 54th minute. This time, it was a field attempt from Syamim Yusof which sailed over the goalkeeper and dipped into the goal-mouth.
With seconds remaining in the match, the hosts took the lead for the first time in the match, and it was good enough to hand them the title.
In the Girls’ Under-18 final, Penang beat Perak 2-1 for the crown. The Penang scorers were Irnie Yanty (21st) and Zuraidah Yahya (31st). Juita Abdul Razak scored for Perak in the 55th minute.
"It was a superb comeback from my boys, and I never doubted their ability to upset Selangor as they played as a team, and never gave up.
"As the hosts, we had a point to prove, and the boys delivered by coming back after trailing in both the semi-finals and finals," said KL coach Lokman Yahaya.
RESULTS -- Boys’ Under-18 Final: Kuala Lumpur 3 Selangor 2; Third-Fourth: Penang 6 Pahang 0.
Girls’ Under-18 Final: Penang 2 Perak 1; Third-Fourth: Kedah 1 Terengganu 6.