Monday, November 24, 2014
THE Malaysia Hockey League (MHL) Premier Division is at its tail end, and national chief coach Tai Beng Hai has not spotted any new talent in the six-team tournament.
The MHL was mooted with an eye to give promising players a platform to be spotted by selectors, but is has failed in its primary objective this season.
"No, I have not seen any new player who has made a mark in the MHL. Those who have been doing well are national and Project Players (2013 and 2016) or those who have been called-up for national training before but did not make a cut," said Beng Hai who is also the Sapura coach.
And with that, Beng Hai will select 25 established players for World League Round Two training when the MHL preliminary round ends on Nov 30.
The World League Round Two will be held in Singapore on Jan 17-25. Malaysia are top-seeded while the other teams are Singapore, Japan, Bangladesh, Oman, Ukraine and Poland. One more country will join the line-up after the Round One tournament in Suva, Fiji, on Dec 6-13.
The top-three teams in Singapore will play in the World League Semi-finals for a shot at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics.
The MHL turned into a circus on Sunday when officials decided to post-pone the UniKL-Tenaga match to Wednesday after a heavy downpour. An announcement was made over the PA system which caught both the teams by surprise as they were ready to play and the rain had stopped.
Team officials from both sides were fuming mad as they were not consulted before the decision was taken, and now they have to turn up at 6pm Wednesday to complete their fixtures even though they felt the pitch was playable on Sunday.
The MHL is now officially a two-horse race as Terengganu Hockey Team, on 21 points, are the only team which is capable of giving four-time consecutive double champions Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC) a fight for the League title whenn they clash on Friday.
THT will get a chance to lift their first title if they win, while for KLHC, it would be just another trophy in their cabinet.
RESULT: Tenaga Nasional 0 UniKL 2.
P W D L F A Pts
KLHC 8 8 0 0 29 8 24
TERENGGANU 8 7 0 1 37 15 21
TENAGA 8 3 0 5 13 17 9
SAPURA 8 1 3 4 15 24 6
UNIKL 8 1 2 5 9 25 5
MAYBANK 8 0 3 5 13 27 3