Gimme, Gimme Gimme

31 Mar 2013

Deflections Floored Unlucky Turtles

Two deflected goals helped Darul Takzim FC to overcome Terengganu at the Hassan Yunus Stadium in Johor Bahru last night. However it was the visitors who opened the scoring when Effa Owona finished smartly a pass from Abdul Manaf Mamat.

The home side was gifted with a goal when Terengganu veteran defender Rosdi Talib wrestled Nurul Azwan Roya inside the box in the 36th minute. Daniel Guiza made no mistake from the spot even though Sharmiza Yusof had gone the right way.

Darul Takzim went ahead when Guiza shot took a deflection off Vincent Bikana's boot to leave Sharmiza stranded minutes before the interval. Then Southern Tigers went further ahead when Nurul's shot took another heavy deflection before looping over Sharmiza to make it 3-1.

Owona led the line as The Turtles tried to fight back. The Cameroon striker used his physical presence to reduce the gap to just a single goal when he headed home from a corner.

Terengganu tried to force the equaliser but in the end Darul Takzim managed to hold on despite playing with ten men after Tharmimi Saiban was dismissed after he received his second yellow card for the night.

The win saw Darul Takzim climbed to third in the Super League table, equal on points with Selangor but with an inferior goal difference. The Red Giants were held to a 1-1 draw by Felda United on Friday.

Instead, it was Darul Takzim neighbour, the Lions XII that went to the top of the charts when a solitary strike by Shahril Ishak managed to see off the challenge from bottom side, Negeri Sembilan.

Terengganu meanwhile dropped to eighth spot behind Kelantan who registered a fortunate 3-2 win over the Armed Forces (ATM) on Friday. Both sides have the same number of points but the The Stags have a better goal difference.

Pahang climbed to fifth after registering their second away win of the season after coming back from behind in Kuala Terengganu. The home side T-Team Titans who were at the back of six match without a win, went ahead through Mohamad Muinuddin in the 24th minute.

However, a misjudgment by Titans goalkeeper, Iqbal Suhimi allowed Fauzi Roslan to level the score with two minutes remaining in the first half. The Titans clearly missing the influential George Boateng in the middle of the park who was suspended for the match.

Faizol Hussin then put The Elephants ahead with seven minutes to go as the home side lost their concentration. Substitute Gopinathan Ramachandra put the match beyond the reach of Peter Butler's boys with a low shot three minutes later to make it seven match without a win for The Titans.

PKNS FC were shocked by Perak at the Shah Alam Stadium after Rafiuddin Rodin's strike fifteen minutes from time was enough to separate the two sides at the end of ninety minutes.

In the lone Premier League match played last night, Kuala Lumpur defeated UiTM 2-1. However the result did not affect their positions in the lower half of the table.


24 Mar 2013

Defeat for THT in Their Second Match

After the intense battle against Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) in their opening match, Terengganu Hockey Team (THT) found the going tough in their second match against Maybank today.

THT looked more settled than in their previous match and were able to force five penalty corners but could not make full use of them. The newly formed side looked heavy at times and could not find their way past the Maybank defence.

Action from the Maybank vs THT match
(Photo taken from the TNB-MHL official website)

The Tigers fielded four Pakistan players in their line-up with Muhammad Irfan, Shakeel Abbasi, Muhammad Waqas and Shafqat Rasool taking on the field. With fresh legs they were the early aggressors as they forced a penalty corner early in the match.

However THT custodian, Hazrul Faiz managed to palm away the effort by Mohamad Zulhairi Hashim. Coming to the half hour mark the goalkeeper was finally beaten.

Pakistani player Shakeel dispossessed THT skipper, Mohamad Shahrun Nabil before dribbling past two defenders. A reverse stick hit gave Hazrul no chance at all and Maybank took the lead.

The lead did not last long as THT upped the tempo and scored the equaliser in the 33rd minute when Sufi Ismat managed to put the ball past Maybank goalkeeper, Hanaffi Hassan.

The second half saw THT having more possession but the well drilled Maybank defence stood firm to soak up the pressure by the east coast side. The Tigers then looked dangerous when they break and from such instance they scored the winner.

The anticipation of Muhammad Waqas was spot on as he diverted an off target hit by Shafqat Rasool past Hazrul.

THT tried to chase the match but could not find their way past Hanaffi. The task was made much harder when Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin was flashed the yellow card with just four minutes remaining.

In the end it was too much for Nik Rozemi's boys and they have to settle for just a point from two matches.


23 Mar 2013

Khyril To The Rescue

Malaysia registered their first victory in the 2015 Asian Cup qualifying campaign when they overcame a stubborn Yemen side 2-1 at the Shah Alam Stadium.

Substitute Khyril Muhymeen was the hero when he headed home a cross from Norshahrul Idlan Talaha from the right with ten minutes remaining. The Kedah striker has been on the pitch less than five minutes coming on for Amri Yahyah.

However the home fans were shocked when Yemen lone striker, Al Hagri put his team ahead with a well taken goal with just twelve minutes on the clock. The striker managed to get past two Malaysian defenders on the right before unleashing a shot that went past Khairul Fahmi Che Mat.

The Kelantan goalkeeper who has not been at his best for quite sometime now must be asking himself how could the shot go past him. However he redeemed himself when he produced a number of good saves to keep his side in contention throughout the match.

Mahalli Jasuli who was also guilty for the Yemenis' goal made amends later when his run down the flank and subsequent cross caused panic in the visitors' defence.

In his attempt to clear the ball from danger a Yemeni defender accidently passed the ball to the unmarked Azamuddin who was lurking at the far post. The Pahang forward made no mistake in front of the open goal to level the score.

Malaysia totally dominated proceedings and could have won by a bigger a margin had Nor Shahrul worn his shooting boot tonight. Unfortunately he was not and the Darul Takzim FC striker wasted a number of clear cut chances. Despite that he still played his part in providing the cross that led to the winning goal scored by Khyril.

The win would certainly lift some pressure on Malaysia head coach, Rajagopal who came under more intense media scrutiny after his comment about the lack of striking options available to him was due to FAM allowing foreign players to ply their trade again in the Malaysian League.


22 Mar 2013

Eight Goals Thriller as THT Began With a Draw

The 2013 Malaysian Hockey League (MHL) kicked off today with defending champions Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC) announced their attention to continue dominating the local hockey scene with a 5-0 thrashing of UniKL.

Debutant Terengganu Hockey Team (THT) held their more illustrious opponents, Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) to a 4-4 draw with Terengganu born Fadzli Saari scoring a hattrick for his employer, TNB.

TNB junior side, TNB Thunderbolts meanwhile opened their campaign with a bang by registering a 6-0 win over Tengku Mohamad Ismail Sports School while UiTM recorded a 4-2 win over MBI.

Uniten KPT also started their campaign with a win, scoring three goals against Sunday 20/30 who managed to reply one back of their own. In another match, Nur Insafi Warriors held Sapura to a 1-1 draw.


21 Mar 2013

THT Taking On the Big Guns in 2013 MHL

The 2013 Malaysian Hockey League (MHL) will see Terengganu having a representative for the first time since the participation of Kuala Terengganu Municipal Council carried the flag for the state in the early days of the competition.

The Terengganu Hockey Team (THT) will be seen as one of the favourites to do well in the MHL as they managed to get six Malaysian internationals from defending champions, Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC).

The six are: Mohamad Shahrun Nabil, Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin, Ismail Abu, Mohamad Ameerullah Aziz, Fitri Saari and last season MHL Best Player, Azlan Misron.

They will combine their skills and experience with nine players from the victorious Terengganu SUKMA squad which won the gold medal in the 2012 games held in Kuantan, Pahang.

Apart from these players the team will be enhanced by two foreign players who are yet to be identified by the team management.

However, THT will not have it easy as other more experienced teams feel they will need time to gel. That was the view of Nur Saiful Zaini Nasaruddin, the assistant manager of Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) whom will be THT opponent in the opening fixture.

Nur Saiful believes his side familiarity with one another will be the key to their success this season. In addition they have recruited two good players in Mohamad Marhan Jalil and Mohamad Ramadhan Rosli.

TNB will be without any foreign player this season and so will UniKL. However, the latter's coach, Arul Selvaraj will not be unfazed as he believes his charges who are mostly from the national juniors squad are capable of playing good hockey and will do well to finish in the top six of the MHL to qualify for the knock-out stage.

Meanwhile, defending champions KLHC are not worried about losing the six national players to THT as they have brought in five Pakistanis internationals into their squad.

Five goals hero for Pakistan in the recent Sultan Azlan Shah Cup, Muhammad Imran will be combining with his compatriots Waseem Ahmad, Fareed Ahmad, Muhammad Umar Bhutta and Akhtar Ali. They will be joined by Australian international, Tim Deavin.

KLHC coach, K.Dharmaraj is very positive about his team chances in grabbing all the three titles at stake. Despite that he will take a game by game approach in order not to be caught off-guard by his opponents.

Other teams vying for the Premier Division title are Maybank, Nur Insafi Warriors and Sapura. The three of them also strengthened their squad by engaging foreign players who are mostly from Pakistan.

Maybank will be relying on the services of former skipper of Pakistan, Shakeel Abassi and his compatriots: Muhammad Irfan, Muhammad Waqas and Shafqat Rasool in the tournament.

Sapura also opted for a Pakistanis flavour with a dash of Indian with the signings of Khasif Ali, Yasir Islam and Muhammad Zubair from Pakistan while India's Raja Veerachamy completing the foreign quartet in the team.

Six Pakistan players have also been signed by Nur Insafi Warriors for this season campaign. They are Nasir Ahmad, Abdul Asim Khan, Shazad Amir, Imran Muhammad, Hussain Muhammad Salman and Ateeq Muhammad.

The Division One title will be competed by Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), Bukit Jalil Sports School (BJSS), UNiTEN KPT, Sunday 20/30, Tengku Mohamad Ismail Sports School (SSTMI), TNB Thunderbolts and MBI.


2 Mar 2013

Abdul Manaf Helps Terengganu to First Away Win

Abdul Manaf Mamat's first league goal of the season helped Terengganu registering their first away win in the 2013 Malaysian Super League at the expense of PKNS FC.

His wonderful strike in the 26th minute after receiving a pass from Ashaari Shamsuddin increased The Turtles's lead after Effa Owona had put them ahead just after eight minutes.

Owona's goal was courtesy of a mistake by a PKNS defender who in his attempt to clear the danger created by a stiff shot by Terengganu winger Khairul Ramadhan, diverted the ball into the striker's path.

There was no movement for Elavarasan's boys but they are now just five points of the new league leader, Darul Takzim despite occupying the ninth spot on the MSL table.

Darul Takzim left it late at the Hassan Yunos Stadium when they trailed bottom team, Negeri Sembilan after thirty minutes when veteran Rashid Mahmud had put The Deers ahead when his shot went through a sea of legs before beating the Darul Takzim goalkeeper.

With seven minutes left on the clock, much to the delight of the home supporters, Kamarul Afiq Kamaruddin put Darul Takzim on level terms with the visitors with a powerful header from a corner kick.

Then as Negeri Sembilan were thinking of going home with a hard fought point Nurul Azwan Roya secured all three points for Fandi Ahmad's charges with a long range shot in the second minute of added time that gave Hamsani Ahmad no chance at all.

In an earlier match, Lions XII were held to a goalless draw by Felda United in Petaling Jaya. Despite the result, the visitors moved to third place on goal difference above Selangor and Pahang.

The Settlers meanwhile still remained winless at home this season.


1 Mar 2013

Night of Draws

It was a night of draws in the Super League tonight as the two fixtures on the menu ended in stalemates.

The Armed Forces (ATM) whose title aspirations took a dent last Saturday with their 3-2 defeat to Terengganu in Kuala Terengganu could not find their way past another east coast side, Pahang.

The Elephants, whose title challenge also faltered in recent weeks have now gone four matches without a win. Their last success was the 3-0 east coast derby win against Terengganu in January.

In Kota Bharu, the home side Kelantan had to thank their foreign striker, Keita Mandjou whose late equaliser saved them the blushes as an early strike by striker, Abdul Hadi Yahya looked set to be the only goal of the match.

Meanwhile in the Premier League, Sime Darby continued their winning ways with a 2-0 win over UiTM FC. Strikes by Karlo Primorac and Goran Perak ensured The Planters remained on top with Sarawak hot on their heels.

The Crocs meanwhile registered a hard fought 1-0 win over Kuala Lumpur at the KLFA Stadium in Cheras. Ivan Babic scored the crucial goal that brought all three points back to Kuching in the 68th minute. His header from a Ramesh Lai cross gave the home side goalkeeper no chance at all.

Sabah made full use of their home advantage when they defeated Johor 3-2 at the Likas Stadium. Koh Traore continued his goal-scoring form with a brace in this match. Shahrul Azhar Ture's strike was sandwiched between Traore's two goals. Rashid Aya and Izuan Jarudin replied for the visitors.

Firza Rozali injury time strike was enough to give SPA FC a 1-0 win over POS Malaysia FC at the UiTM Stadium. The win saw SPA taking over sixth spot from POS Malaysia who now dropped to ninth in the Premier League standings.

Early pace-setters, the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM) have now gone five matches without a win. In their latest match they fell 3-1 to a resurgent Perlis side who climbed into seventh spot in the table. PDRM remained in fifth but now with just three points separating them with the Northern Lions.

In another match, Betaria FC held Kedah to a goalless draw at the Hang Jebat Stadium in Melaka.