Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin in action against Australia ..
THE Malaysian hockey team played well in patches and went down 4-0 to world no 1 Australia in the curtain raiser of the World Cup at the Hague, Netherlands yesterday.
The score was 1-0 at half-time, but world no 13 Malaysia let in three more soft goals in the second half.
Glenn Turner started the count with a 25th minute goal, while the other goals were scored by Eddie Ockenden (50th), Jamie Dwyer (52nd), and Turner (54th).
All the second half goals were scored in a spate of four minutes, as Malaysia collapsed at the back-line.
Only the heroics of goalkeeper S, Kumar, who saved at least seven attempts, saved a total drubbing.
Malaysia will next play Belgium on Monday.
Yesterday morning, the Malaysian team were hit by another bad news as coach K. Dharmaraj’s gather, R. Kanniah, passed away in India a few hours before the match against Australia.
Dharmaraj had this posted on his FaceBook: “Thank you all, for your condolence messages with regards to my father's sudden demise. As it has been difficult moment with so many sad and bad news. Thanks for the kind words and concern.
“It is difficult but your words make me strong. Thank you again.”
The match statistics sided Australia, as they had 11 shots at goal while Malaysia only had two. The Aussies also had six penalty corners but they failed to score a single goal, as Malaysia defended well.
The two penalty corners won by Malaysia were executed by Razie Rahim and Faizal Saari but were nicely stopped by the first runners.
RESULTS -- GROUP A: Malaysia 0 Australia 4, Belgium x India x, England x Spain x.
MALAYSIA’S World Cup Fixtures (Malaysian time) -- June 2: v Belgium (11.30pm); June 5: v England (7pm); June 7: v India (8.30pm); June 9: v Spain (8.30pm).