Thursday, October 7, 2010

Hockey: Pakistan thump Malaysia

Pakistan’s Haseem Abdul Khan (left) fights for the ball with Malaysia’s   Razie Rahim in their match yesterday. Pakistan won 4-1.
Pakistan’s Haseem Abdul Khan (left) fights for the ball with Malaysia’s Razie Rahim in their match yesterday. Pakistan won 4-1.
WHATEVER hopes Malaysia had of a semi-final appearance in the Commonwealth Games were ended in a thumping fashion as Pakistan whipped Stephen van Huizen's boys 4-1 in a Group A match at the Major Dhyan Chand Stadium yesterday. Malaysia were a poor side compared to the one who played against India on Tuesday and Pakistan took advantage to bolster their last four hopes.

Pakistan took the lead in the 17th minute through Muhammad Imran but Malaysia offered some brief hope when Amin Rahim equalised in the 32nd minute.

But Pakistan turned the screws in the second half to add three more and Malaysia, who still have to play Australia, can only look forward to the classification matches.
Meanwhile, the Malaysian women's hockey team have no choice but to aim for three points when they take on Wales in a Group B match today.

The 5-0 thrashing by New Zealand on Tuesday has put Malaysia in a precarious position and coach Yahya Atan said his players must not make the mistake of dropping points to Wales, who have lost both their matches so far.

"A win is the only option available to us. My only worry is that we have been slow in stopping attacks from the opposition in midfield," said Yahya yesterday.

"I have told the players that we can't afford to continue doing this. I have tried to work on this weakness and I hope the players understand what is required of them."

Yahya wants skipper Nadia Abdul Rahman to lead the midfield.

"She was a little off key against New Zealand and that led to the rest of her teammates struggling.

"We need Nadia at the top of her game if we are to get the three points against Wales."

Malaysia have three points after two matches, stunning Canada 3-2 in their opener but Yahya knows that aiming for the semi-finals is not a realistic target.

However, the players can only learn from playing against top quality opposition and a win against Wales will set them up nicely for the clash against England on Saturday.

"Morale is, despite the heavy defeat to New Zealand, on a high and I expect my players to beat Wales."

In the 2006 Melbourne Games, Malaysia finished sixth behind champions Australia, England, India, New Zealand and Scotland

Read more: Commonwealth Games /NST/

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