Monday, 21 October 2013 10:57

Despite a better performance, the national juniors fell to their second defeat against their Indian counterparts at the Dyan Chand Stadium in New Delhi last night.

The Malaysian Juniors blew a two goal lead to succumb to a 4-3 defeat after losing the first match 4-2 last Friday.

However team manager Mirnawan Nawawi said that they were unperturbed by the score line but took comfort in the fact that they team has shown marked improvement.

“Our defence played very well and in the first 15 minutes India hardly had any look at our goal,” said Mirnawan.

“The players moved the ball with confidence and hardly gave their opponents time on the ball with precise tackling and good off the ball movement.

“However we need to work on our penalty corner defence as India scored two out of their four goals from penalty corners and they only had three penalty corners in the whole match.

“Still I feel that we are in the right direction in our final stages of preparation for the Junior World Cup and are looking towards fine tuning several aspects of our game.”

Malaysia raced to a 2-0 lead courtesy of goals from Meor Azuan Mohamed (19th minute) and Zulhairi Hashim who converted a penalty corner in the 23rd minute.

However India pulled a goal; back in the 35th minute via Affan Yusof. The Indians then hit a purple patch as they raced to a 4-2 lead, scoring three goals in a space of nine minutes through the efforts of Gurjinder Singh (40th min), Sukhmanjit Singh (47th min) and Mandeep Singh (49 min)

Though Zulhairi scored in the 61st minute to reduce it to a one-goal deficit, Mohd Syamim Yusof failed to capitalize on a golden opportunity two minutes from time, sending his shot wide with only the keeper to beat.

“Our forwards need to be more clinical when presented with an opportunity to score and we hope to improve on this over the next month,” added Mirnawan.


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