INSEP Five Nations: Ireland 4 (Eugene Magee 2, Phelie Maguire, Mitch Darling) Malaysia 1 (Hanafi Hafifihafiz)
Ireland kept the possibility of winning the INSEP Five Nations alive as they notched an impressive win over Malaysia in spite of giving up eight corners in Paris this afternoon, recording their best ever win over the Asian nation in their 12th meeting.
It leaves Paul Revington’s side with an outside chance of taking the inaugural title should they beat Scotland and Malaysia fail to beat France in Sunday’s tournament closer.
Peter Caruth – originally a non-travelling reserve – came in for Paul Gleghorne in the first change to the match day 16 this week.
Eugene Magee gave Ireland the early initiative in the 12th minute, taking on the drag-flicking responsibilities for the only goal of the first half. They had a couple of corner opportunities late in the half, too, as Mahammad Razie was sin-binned in the 28th minute but neither were taken to leave the gap at the minimum.
And, with Ronan Gormley yellow-carded for ten minutes, Malaysia started to create more openings in the second half, breaking their duck in the 45th minute when Hanafi Hafifihafiz levelled from open play.
But Phelie Maguire – with his third goal in two days – restored the advantage within two minutes and they created a more comfortable edge soon after.
Initially, Ireland were disappointed when a corner was down-graded to a bully. But Mitch Darling won the face-off and played the ball out to Timmy Cockram on the right wing who switched the ball into the middle for Darling to deflect home his 18th international goal and 3-1.
Malaysia came close to pulling one back soon after when number one runner Andy McConnell was carded for breaking the line. John Jackson kept the follow-up corner out with an excellent reaction save on the line.
The tie was sealed with six minutes to go by Magee whipped home his second corner, this time low to Roslan Jamaluddin’s glove side.
Speaking after the game, coach Paul Revington was pleased his side was able to finish off the tie after two draws: “We took our chances today which we have not done in previous games which is pleasing, but there is still plenty to improve on and rectify.” Ireland play Scotland tomorrow at 12.30 (Irish time) in their final test.
Ireland: David Harte, John Jackson, Geoff McCabe, Ronan Gormley (capt), Joe Brennan, Eugene Magee, Andy McConnell, Timmy Cockram, Phelie Maguire, David Ames, Conor Harte
Subs: Chris Cargo, Alan Giles, Peter Caruth, Alan Sothern, Mitch Darling
Malaysia: Roslan Jamaluddin, Muhamad Amin, Muhammad Marhan, Madzli Ikmar (capt), Shahrun Nabil, Mohamad Sukri, Mirson Azlan, Mahammad Razie, Hanafi Hafifihafiz, Baljit Singh, Ahmad Tajudin
Subs: Tajol Rosli, Izwan Firdaus, Saari Faizal, Mohan Jivan, Nabil Fiqri
Results: Ireland 4 (Eugene Magee 2, Phelie Maguire, Mitch Darling) Malaysia 1 (Hanafi Hafifihafiz); France 6 (Olivier Sanchez 2, Fabian Magner 2, Martin Genestet, Jean-Baptiste Pauchet) Poland 4 (Tomasz Dutkiewicz 2, Artur Mikula, Waldemar Rataj)
Standings: 1. Malaysia 6pts (+1) 2. Scotland 6pts (-1) 3. Ireland 5pts (+3) 4. France 4pts (+1) 5. Poland 1pt (-4)
Match Schedule (Irish Time):
Sunday (1.30pm): Ireland vs Scotland; (3pm) France vs Malaysia.