Monday, February 16, 2015
AGAIN: Faizal playing hide-and-seek with coach..
FAIZAL Saari is back at his worst.
After scoring 12 goals, and being named as the best player in the Singapore World League Round Two Faizal has failed to show up for a single training session, and even coach Tai Beng Hai has no idea where he is.
And this is not the first time the striker has gone Awol from national duty, or been in trouble with the coaching set up. After the World Cup, he was dropped from the Commonwealth as well as Asian Games squad for his erratic bahavior.
"I have not been able to contact Faizal since we returned from Singapore, and yes, he has not attended any training or returned calls made to him," said Beng Hai.
Malaysia are currently playing a series of friendlies against Egypt at the National Stadium in Bukit Jalil.
When contacted Faizal answered his hand phone: "I'm busy and can't talk," was all he said before hanging up.
After Singapore, Faizal did say that he has received an offer to play in Division Two of the German league, but it is only starting in March.
"I have tried contacting Faizal many times, but he did not answer my calls and I do not know where he is or what are his plans. Anyway, we are playing against Egypt today (yesterday) as early preparations for the Azlan Shah Cup said Beng Hai.
Against Egypt Malaysia lost 3-1 and won the second 2-1: "I fielded 11 who did not play in Singapore to give them some playing time ahead of Azlan Shah selections.
"The results against Egypt does not matter, as I test fringe players," said Beng Hai.
Results do not matter but fitness does, as a recent test conducted showed that all the players were at a very low level. Infact, the Malaysian men's fitness level are even even below that of a women's team in a neighbouring country.
When Beng Hai was told about this fact he was surprised.
"Really? A test was conducted after we returned from Singapore but I have yet to see the results, so I can't comment on this issue yet," said Beng Hai.
The Azlan Shah Cup will be held in Ipoh on April 5-12, and Malaysia have world No 1 Australia, India, New Zealand, South Korea and Canada for company.
Malaysia's top assignment this year is the World League Semi-Finals in June which is a qualifier for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics.
Meanwhile, The Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) will hold their Council Meeting on March 7, EGM on March 22 and AGM on May 13.