Sunday, July 29, 2018

Dharmaraj's women seal series 3-0

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysain women's hockey squad won the five-series friendlies 3-0 when they beat Queensland 3-2 Sunday.
  Queensland are the Australian Women's League champions, but they played without five of their best who are representing Australia in the ongoing World Cup in London.
  Malaysia started with 1-1 and 2-2 draws before winning 3-1, 2-1 and 3-2.
  The team is preparing for the Jakarta Asian Games where they are in Group A with China, Japan, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Japan and China are playing in the World Cup right now.
  Yesterday, Malaysia took a 2-0 lead, but were tied at 2-2 by the fourth quarter. Nuraini Rashid scored two goals, while Raja Norsharina scored the other.
  "Even though we lost a 2-0 lead, but still, I saw progress in their game since they arrived here. And with this series win, I believe we are ready to give our best in the Asian Games," said Malaysian coach K. Dharmaraj.
  "Two years ago when we wanted to compete in the Australian women's league we were advised to play in Division Two because there were fears that we would be thrashed.
  "And today, even though they did not have their national players, we managed to win the series agaisnt the Australian champions," said Dharmaraj.

Back against the wall in cold Perth

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia's back will be against the wall when they play provincial side Australia A in the fourth friendly in Perth Monday.
  For, coach Stephen van Huizen's men had lost the first three 3-2, 4-2 and 3-0 and can't afford any slip-ups in the remaining two matches.
  Malaysia are targeted to win gold in the Jakarta Asian Games, and qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, but their performance in Australia has been anything but good.
  And since in Jakarta they will be playing Thailand at 12 noon and Bangladesh at 2pm, the training stint in cold Perth will have to be reversed with a hot schedule upon their return.
  Malaysia are in Group B and the other teams are Pakistan, Oman and Indonesia.
  "Yes, I am aware that we will be playing two mid-day matches in Jakarta and so have planned for morning and lunchtime training when we return from Perth," said van Huzien.
  In Perth, it is now 14-17 degrees Celsius.
  On the previous three defeats, van Huizen feels even though they are playing Australia A and not the World No 1 side, they have not been up against easy opponents.
  "Australia A is made up of players who are trying to break into the main squad as well as players who are trying to make a comeback after retirement.
  "So, they give their best to impress selectors and I expect the remaining three matches to be just as tough."

Malaysia 45+ lose to France

The Malaysian veterans 45+ team lost 3-0 to France at the Masters Hockey World Cup in Terrassa, Spain.
  After a 2-1 win Over Scotland, the veterans found France to be a tough nut to crack, as they wasted too many sitters.
  They will meet Germany next on Tuesday.
  Team manager Manjit Majid Abdullah said: "Even though France was a strong side, but we also had many chances to score but the strikers fumbled inside the semi-circle.
  "We play Germany next and I expect another difficult match."
   Malaysia is also playing in the 55+ event, and after a 9-0 win over Ireland, the team will meet Argentina on Monday.