Monday, September 17, 2018

Darwin International: Tough time for Razie and mates..

Malaysian skipper Razie Rahim (right) in a shoot at the Darwin Waterfront with skippers from Australia, Japan and Argentina before the 4-Nation Darwin International starts on Tuesday. --  picture6 hours ago

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia will open accounts against World No 1 Australia in the Darwin International at the Marrara Hockey Stadium in Australia Tuesday. Sunday, Australia played a friendly with World No 2 Argentina and could only win 1-0, indicating a tough time for Malaysia as well as Japan who make up the quadrangular. Coach Amin Rahim's men then play Japan on Wednesday, and after a days rest play Argentina. Malaysia rested six regulars for the match because some were recovening from injuries after the Asian Games, while others were rested to let the bench prove themselves. The six who will stay back and undergo rehabilitation are Sukri Abdul Mutalib, Faizal Saari, Marhan Jalil, Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin, Nabil Fiqri and S. Kumar. And their replacement were goalkeepeer Hafizuddin Othman, Najib Hassan, Ashran Hamsani, Ramadan Rosli, Haziq Samsul and Norsyafiq Sumantri. The skipper's band was handed to Malaysia's No 1 penalty corner flicker Razie Rahim, as regular Shukri is on the rested list. Razie, who last skippered Malaysia in this year's Azlan Shah Cup said: "I have no problem with the armband, as I believe my team-mates like Faiz (Helmi Jali) and Fitri (Shaari) will help me to organise the players for this tournament. "All I expect in return is for my team-mates, especially the younger ones, to have a high level of confidence as we will be up against the best in the world," said Razie. The Wednesday's match against Japan would be interesting, as the Asian Games champions beat Malaysia in a shoot-out recently in Jakarta. Malaysia took a 5-2 lead, but Japan equalised at 6-6 and then handed Malaysia a painful defeat in the shoot-out to deny Razie and his mates a historic Asian Games gold and an Olympic ticket which came with it.