Thursday, February 17, 2011

Make-or-break for UniKL

KUALA Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC) are almost a sure bet to lift the League title today, but the second spot in the Premier Division of the Malaysia Hockey League is still a toss between three teams.
And UniKL, last season’s wooden spoonists, will have the steepest climb to finish second as they face Charity Shield champions Tenaga Nasional, and then Sapura is what could be a make-or-break weekend for the University side.
Tenaga Nasional, in second spot now, have the easiest passage as if they beat UniKl, they only have to beat bottom of the table UiTM to claim the spot.
As for KLHC, they are poised to win their sixth League title when they play Nur Insafi today. Four of the titles were won under the Ernst & Young banner, while the recent two were under KLHC.
UniKL manager Amir Azhar was modest about his pre dictions, even though his side beat TNB and Sapura by 2-1 scores in the first leg.
“Going by the first leg results, we should be the favourites as we beat both the teams. However, I believe it would be difficult to repeat both the feats as we have lost two influential players, while another is injured,” said Amir.
UniKL will still not have the services of their top scorer Richard Patherick who scored eight, and goalkeeper Stephen Michael as both are still playing with the New Zealand national team.
“We will be playing our fifth and sixth match without them as they had to return to New Zealand and join the national team. Although their presence was sorely felt, we did not lose any matches since.
“Also out hat-trick star (Phillip Stahr), who scored three against Yayasan Negri Sembilan in our 3-2 win, received a nasty knock in the game and needed six stitches on his cheeks.
“He will be playing, but it would be difficult to be his usual self,” said Amir.
And with Khairil Anuar sitting on the bench for picking up demerit points, UniKL will have their backs against the wall this weekend.
PREMIER DIVISION: FRIDAY -- UiTM v Yayasan Negri Sembilan (3.30pm), Nur Insafi v Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club (5.15pm), UniKL v Tenaga Nasional (7pm), Sapura v May bank (8.45pm).
Saturday: Nur Insafi v Maybank (4pm), UiTM v Tenaga Nasional (6pm), Armed Forces-Airod v Kuala Lumpur Hock ey Club (8pm), UniKL v Sapura (KLHA, 6.30pm).
*All other matches at the Tun Razak Stadium.
DIVISION ONE: Friday -- Malacca CC v Ipoh City Hall (Malacca, 5pm), Universiti Sains Malaysia v Bukit Jalil Sports School (USM, 5pm), UniTen v Bandar Penawar Sports School (KLHA Stadium, 5pm).
Sunday: Malacca CC v Bukit Jalil Sports School (Malacca, 5pm), Universiti Sains Malaysia v Bandar Penawar Sports School (USM, 5pm), UniTen v Armed Forces Juniors (KLHA, 5pm).
Feb 25: Bukit Jalil Sports School v UniTen (Ministry of Education Stadium, 5pm), Armed Forces Juniors v Bandar Penawar Sports School (Tun Razak Stadium, 5pm).

P W D L F A Pt
KLHC 13 11 1 1 60 19 34
TNB 13 9 1 3 37 16 28
UNIKL 13 8 3 2 24 18 27
SAPURA 13 8 0 5 35 26 24
YNS 14 7 0 7 42 38 21
NUR INSAFI 14 4 2 8 26 42 14
MAYBANK 13 3 3 7 14 20 12
ATM 14 3 0 11 17 50 9
UITM 13 2 0 11 18 44 6

P W D L F A Pt
ATM JNR 10 9 1 0 27 7 28
BPSS 9 5 0 4 16 15 15
MALACCA CC 10 5 0 5 14 12 15
IPOH CH 11 4 2 5 18 23 14
BJSS 9 4 1 4 19 13 13
USM 10 3 0 7 16 28 9
UNITEN 9 1 2 6 9 21 5

Rashid leads five into Open

RASHID Ismail shot a one-under par 71 for a 146 two-day total to win the National Qualifiers at the Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club to confirm his spot at the Maybank Malaysian Open on April 14-17.
Johor born Rashid, who celebrates his 38th birthday in four days, was joined by overnight leader A. Sasar, R. Nachimuthu, Hanafiah Jamil and Akmal Tarmizee.
These local champions will play against some of the best players in the world for a prize purse of US$D 2.5 million.
Sasar, who led with a par-72, fired a 77 yesterday but still ended third. Second was Nachimuthu who had rounds of 75- 73 for a 148 total.
Hanafia (76-75), Akmal (77-74) and Nazri Zain (73-78) were involved in a three-way playoff for the fourth and fifth spots, before Nazro bowed out.
“I’m quite satisfied with the way I played as I hit the ball really well. I managed to ensure that my ball was always in position and that’s really important in order to qualify for a tournament of this scale. Hopefully I can play better than this on the actual tournament day,” said Rashid.
Maybank Malaysian Open will also feel the presence of the the top three Malaysians on the Asian Tour Order of Merit Danny Chia who is a Maybank Ambassador, Iain Steel and Ben Leong.
Shaaban Hussin, also a Maybank Ambassador, will play on the invitation of the title sponsors.
The Malaysian Golf Association (MGA) also announced the exemptions of three local pros M. Sasidaran, S. Sivachandran and Airil Rizman for the tournament.
"The MGA has chosen to exempt Airil, Sasidaran and Sivachandran as we feel each one of them have showed in more ways than one, their passion and dedication towards the game,” said MGA president Datuk Robin Loh.
The MGA also confirmed the names of six local amateurs who will be competing at the Maybank Malaysian Open. The six are Azman Basharudin, Kenneth de Silva, Hisyam Majid, Jeremiah Kim, Chan Tuck Soon and Gavin Kyle Green.
SELECTED Final Round Scores: 146 Rashid Ismail 75-71; 148 R. Nachimuthu 75-73; 149 A. Sasar 72-77; 151 Hanafia Jamil 76-75, Akhmal Tarmizee 77-74, Nazri Zain 73-78 (lost in playoff).

Former caddy Sasar leads with 72

FORMER caddy A. Sasar's even-par 72 was good enough to hand him the lead in the two-day Maybank Malaysian Open National Qualifiers at the Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club (KLGCC) yesterday.
The 38-year-old leads 54 other local professionals after carding five birdies and five bogeys.
The Qualifiers offer five tickets to the Maybank Malaysian Open on April 14-17 at the at KLGCC.
Trailing Sasar by one stroke is Nazri Zain with one-over-par 73.
Sasar missed last year's Open boat by two strokes, and aims to keep his round low today.
"I starte off as a caddy in Kedah and the last amateur title I won was in 1995. I am lucky that my club (Kelab Golf Negara Subang) is backing me to try and qualify for the Open again," said Sasar.
Kemarol Baharin and Nicholas Pua share third place with two-over 74. Maybank Malaysian Open 2009 National Qualifier champion R. Nachimuthu, Shawn Liew Hoa Yan and Rashid Ismail are tied for fifth with a total of three-over-par 75.
“The course is long and the greens are fast so that makes it a bit challenging to score. However I did display the best putting skills and short game plus chipping today (yesterday) and I am pretty pleased with that,” said Sasar.
And his target in the final round is: "To keep it bogey free, as I would have almost cemented a spot if I had not had five today (yesterday)."
Teen golfer Anis Helmi started with hope to repeat last year’s result where he topped the National Qualifiers, but unfortunately he ended tied 11th spot with three other players after he carded a five-over 77.
Tied alongside Anis is Akmal Tarmizee, another player who claimed his ticket to the Maybank Malaysian Open last year through the National Qualifiers.