Thursday, April 26, 2012

Azerbaijan hammering for Malaysia

By Ajitpal Singh

MALAYSIA were hammered 4-0 by Azerbaijan in their  opening Olympic Qualifying match in Kakamigahara, Japan  yesterday.
Azerbaijan, represented by several Korean-born players,  led 2-0 at half-time through a Yulia Muradi brace from  penalty corners in the 17th and 31st minutes.
Myung Soon Mammadova (45th) and Yuliya Muradi (56th)  completed the rout.
Goalkeeper Farah Ayuni Yahya saved a penalty stroke to  avoid further embarrassment for Malaysia.
The team managed to penetrate into Azerbaijan’s semi- circle but failed to convert their chances, including from four  penalty corners.
“We were attacking quite a bit especially in the first half but  luck was not on our side. The score does not reflect how we  played,” said coach Nasihin Nubli yesterday.
“My players tried hard to prove something but their  goalkeeper (Farida Mammadova) was on form.
“Furthermore, their naturalised players made a huge  difference as they were the ones controlling play.”
Malaysia must beat favourites Japan tomorrow to stay in  the hunt for a spot at the London Olympics.
“We were beaten 4-2 by Japan in our last meeting at the  2010 Asian Games. I believe we have a chance if we play to  strategy on Friday (tomorrow,” Nasihin added.
   Results — Japan 7 Austria 0, Belarus 3 Chile 1, Azerbaijan  4 Malaysia 0.