History was created, but it was not handed on a silver platter by defending champions Korea, when Malaysia won 3-2 to wrest the
the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup for the first time after 29 editions at the Sultan Azlan Shah Stadium, Ipoh, last night.
The crowd erupted in joy after the final buzzer and sadly they invaded the pitch in their joy, which should have never happened with better security.
But the it was a historical win and the crowd probably were overwhelmed by the occasion. Still no excuses as it endangered both the teams on the field.
National hockey coach said the team did not play to expectations and their usual brand of hockey in the first two quarters.
Shello Silverius gave Malaysia a much needed boost when coming from the blind side from the right to connect a long hit from the left by Muhammad Hassan to beat Korean goalkeeper Kim Jaehyeon in the 14th minute to give a 1-0 lead.
But the lead was short lived as Jang Jonghyun equalised in his second attempt of two consecutive penalty corner in the 16th minute.
“I did not talk team tactics to the players at halftime but took them to task for not playing to their best. I reminded them of the fans out their and they cannot let them down.
“And having done so well to reach the final despite key players missing and several players playing with injuries. I asked them if they want to let the fans and themselves down?
“Told them to get back onto the field and believe in themselves and deliver what they are capable of.
“And they responded positively and we got the results.
“It was a team effort and everyone carried out their duties and the result was achieved.
“But it is just the beginning. We still have a long way to go and have to continue to work hard
Razie Rahim penalty flick goal seconds before the end of the third quarter saw Malaysia take the lead 2-1.
On resumption of the final quarter, Malaysia stepped up their performance to find their third goal of Muhamad Aminuddin Mohd Zin’s field goal.
But the Koreans with their never-say die attitude reduced the deficit wityh a penalty corner goal off Jeon Byungjin.
Malaysia stayed focus to keep the slim lead and win the match and wrest the title.
Players like goalkeeper captain Najmi Jazlan, Hafizuddin, Razie and Shello who were depended on to play key roles indeed lived up to their expectations.
Korea on the other hand was obviously disappointed that they failed to defend the title they won in 2019 when the tournament was held last before the Covid-19 pandemic.
He refused to attend a post match Press Conference and left.
His Royal Highness Paduka Seri Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah Ibni Almarhum Sultan Azlan Muhibbuddin Shah Al-Marghfur-Lah presented Malaysia the Cup named after his late father to the Malaysian team in the presence of Datuk Mohammad Tayyab Ikram, the President International Hockey Federation (FIH).
ROLL OF HONOUR
Man of the Match: Razie Rahim (Malaysia)
Best Goalkeeper: Hadizuddin Othman (Malaysia)
Top Scorer: Razie Rahim (Malaysia) – 6 goals
Best Player: Shello Silverius (Malaysia)
Fair-play (Raja Ashman Shah) Trophy: Japan
2nd Runners-up: Pakistan
1st Runner-up: Korea
Image Credit: EDDY MANAN