Friday, September 9, 2011

Malaysia 3 Japan 2

By Jugjet Singh

MALAYSIA woke up from being two goals down to beat Japan 3-2 and will now play for the bronze medal in the Asian Champions Trophy in Ordos.
India and Pakistan, who drew 2-2 yesterday, will play for the gold while South Korea and China will try to avoid the sixth spot.
It was an amazing comeback, as a win for Japan would see them play in the final and at half-time, the Rising Sun were 2-0 up and looking dangerous.
However, Malaysia threw caution to the wind after the breather and two junior players delivered three scintillating goals.
Project 2013 player Amir Farid scored a brace while Faizal Saari delivered the winner.
Faizal dribbled three defenders before making a pass for Amir to score the first, while his own goal was a solo when he sliced past three defenders and sent home a reverse stick shot.
“When South Korea drew 1-1 with China in the earlier match, we only had to beat Japan and there was no more a goal margin to chase.
“This, to a certain extent got the players too excited and they were not their usual self in the first half,” said team manager Stephen van Huizen.
But a pep talk during the breather changed matters: “We told them to go out end enjoy themselves with attacking hockey as there was nothing to lose.
“And now we will have another re-match with Japan on Sunday.”
In the first match of the day, unbeaten India dominated the barren first half but conceded two goals in two minutes to trail 0-2 by the 42nd minute only to come from behind to draw the match under chilly and windy conditions.
RESULTS: India 2 Pakistan 2, South Korea 1 China 1, Japan 2 Malaysia 3.

PAKISTAN 5 3 1 1 13 10 10
INDIA 5 2 3 0 15 8 9
JAPAN 5 2 1 2 11 9 7
MALAYSIA 5 2 1 2 14 13 7
S KOREA 5 2 1 2 13 14 7
CHINA 5 0 1 4 5 17 1

TOMORROW: Fifth-Sixth: South Korea v China; Third-Fourth: Malaysia v Japan; Final: India v Pakistan.

India 2 Pakistan 2

Ordos (China): The high profile clash between India and Pakistan in the final group match of the Asian Champions Trophy ended in 2-2 draw on Friday.
India, who were down by two goals, came back strongly and levelled the scores through Rupinderpal and Danish Mujtaba, according to information reaching here.
Five minutes into the second half, Pakistan managed to break the deadlock by scoring the first goal of the match. They quickly followed it up with another one and maintained a clear lead but was denied victory by the Indians.

Earlier, a desperate India, looking for anything less than a victory, displayed an attacking game against the arch rivals but failed to score before the half time.
On paper, the high-voltage Indo-Pak encounter might be just a group match but in reality it was a showdown between two traditional rivals out to annex a spot in Sunday`s final.

What a pity! There is no Live Telecast

The AHF at least could have managed video streaming in their website – believe me they have a name-sake website.
The Asia’s best tournament is being held without television, without website, without Live telecast or Text Commentary.


What a pity! There is no Live Telecast. AHF to be blamed
As India takes on Pakistan in only second time this year, tension mounts amidst the hockey fans especially those in the sub-continent. A great opportunity for any television channel to grab the eyeballs, but what a pity there is none to bring those actions to the drawing rooms.
Whom to blame?
The Asian Champions Trophy is the brainchild of Asian Hockey Federation. The Chinese Hockey Federation is organizing, rather rescuing the event, on its soils. Naturally, it is expected either the parent organization, in this case the AHF or the host’s country, China, is expected to put in place television Live.
However, it has to be mentioned here the Asian Champions Trophy, starting of which was announced four years ago in Chennai during the Asia Cup had no takers. That time the concept was mooted by IHF, and it was willing to host the event for the first three years. However, the sedate phase with which the AHF functions, delayed the matter, and the matters were further complicated when the IHF itself was dysfunctional due to dissolution by the IOA in the early 2008.
So, then it has become a routine to announce ACT after every Executive Committee meeting of AHF which normally takes place whenever Asia Cup, Asian Games or Sultan Azlan Cup were held. It got as many times postponed as HI postpones the Nationals in India.
Strictly speaking Indian men did not qualify for the ACT. It was from the beginning stipulated that only the Continents best four, as now involves with the women, will figure. As India finished fifth in the 2006 Asian Games, and then fifth in the Asia Cup, India did not qualify in the first place. It seems India lobbied for its inclusion, which it did.
When AHF says ACT is a tournament of excellence, involving its best four or five. Then it is their duty to see the tournament is packaged professionally and marketed seriously. The two aspects which one normally does not attach to AHF. This time too the continental body, as it happened with respect to Asia Cup (Kuantan), could not organize television coverage.
In the electronic age, in the age of communication, we are now in a situation that even to getting the ACT result is considered breaking news!
The AHF at least could have managed video streaming in their website – believe me they have a name-sake website.
The Asia’s best tournament is being held without television, without website, without Live telecast or Text Commentary.
The shame squarely lies on the shoulders of the AHF. The entire AHF brass will be at Ordos, undoubtedly at the hospitality of the hosts. They will be able to witness the match, what about the fans all over the world?
If anybody wants to know how not to develop popular sports, perhaps they should dial AHF.