MALAYSIA EDGE CHINA



As you may know two big competitions are currently being hosted by Malaysia this week. The Thomas and Uber cup for Badminton and also the SUltan Azlan SHah cup for field hockey. For both cups the Malaysian team is doing quite well so far. Just now Malaysia completed their final group stage game by beating China 2-1. It was good stuff and thanks to our own local sports channel - Astro Arena, Malaysians for once can what all the action live. Cool. We'll see who we will be drawn against in the semi finals. 
Tomorrow I'll be watching the Malaysi-China semi-final Thomas Cup match at the stadium. A friend couldn't make it and gave me his ticket! =) Of course, I had to oblige... Insyallah we can beat the Chinese defending chamipons tomorrow though statistics suggest otherwise. Pray hard everyone k. I'm off to bed. Leaving you with a short write up on Malaysia's hockey win earlier this evening...



Malaysia defeated China in their final match of the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup and will now await the results of Saturday’s matches to determine if they will play the final or end up in the classification matches.

Malaysia needed to score as many goals as possible in their last match against China, but for the first 10 minutes, they were at the receiving end as China won four penalty corner attempts, with one even hitting the bar. And they could well end up paying the price for it when all the matches are completed.
Malaysia came out of their shell after that but it was a tale of near misses as the forwards were blunt with their attempts, and the score was still 0-0 after 20 minutes.

China, sensing that Malaysia were not their usual self, became more confident and won their fifth penalty corner in the 22nd minute but bungled it, and Malaysia made a super break only to be stopped at the top of the China semi-circle by Cui Yongxin, who deliberately used his foot, and was yellow carded.
And a better organised Malaysia finally broke their penalty corner duck in the 25th minute but messed up the stopping, and let China off the hook again.
With six minutes on the first half clock, Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin broke free and passed the ball to an unmarked Izwan Firdaus, who faced an empty goalmouth, but the young player failed to connect the sitter.

The second penalty corner, in the 33rd minute, also went to waste as Amin Rahim's push to Azlan Misron was poorly trapped. And so did the third penalty corner, won with three seconds on the clock, which hit the knee of Hafifihafiz Hanafi, instead of his hockey stick, in yet another bungled set-piece.
When awarded their fourth penalty corner in the 37th minute, Malaysia went for the direct approach and Amin sent his low flick on the left of the Chinese goal to put Malaysia 1-0 ahead.

Malaysia lived dangerously as their defence was sloppy and they paid the price when Liu Yixian scored the equalizer in the 55th minute through a penalty corner. Malaysia were then awarded a penalty corner 13 minutes from time but this time Su Rifeng read Amin’s attempt well to pad it away.

But Malaysia were not to be denied as Madzli Ikmar sent a searching pass from inside his own half and the ball was picked up by Azlan Misron who sidestepped the Chinese custodian and put Malaysia 2-1 ahead with eight minutes remaining.