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News for 28 February 2018

All the news for Wednesday 28 February 2018

Argentina beat Malaysia 3-2

By Jugjet Singh

OLYMPIC champions Argentina arrived in two batches Sunday and Monday, and on Tuesday they beat Malaysia 3-2 at the National Stadium in Bukit Jalil.

But the International friendly almost turned into an international fist fight, as tempers flared when Malaysia equalised at 1-1.

And after a few minutes of pushing and shoving, which included Argentina goalkeeper Juan Vivaldi and Malaysian Faizal Shaari the match resumed.

Showing very little jet-lag after a long haul flight across the globe, Argentina scored off Lucas Vila (19th 48th) and Gonzalo Peillat in the 46th.

Nik Aiman Nik Rozemi (31st) and Azri Hassan (60th) scored for Malaysia.

It was Malaysia who showed less urgency and missed sitters while the Olympic champions were deadly.

Coach Stephen van Huizen's men will play another International Friendly against Argentina Wednesday before the final 18 are selected for the Azlan Shah Cup starting Saturday.

The other teams in the Azlan Shah Cup in Ipoh are Australia, England, India and Ireland.

Malaysia open their campaign against Ireland and are expected to face a tough time in Ipoh playing against some of the beat teams in the world in preparation for the Commonwealth Games and then the Asian Games.

Jugjet's World of Field Hockey

Argentina sinks Malaysia hockey team in first warm-up

By R. Loheswar

Malaysia’s Faiz Helmi Jali (left) in action against Argentina’s Ladislao Giancarelli at the Bukit Jalil Hockey Stadium February 27, 2018. — Picture by Firdaus Latif

KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia lost 3-2 to Argentina in the first of two warm-up matches at the Bukit Jalil Hockey Stadium ahead of the Azlan Shah Cup which will takes place from March 3 to 10 .

Argentina went ahead through Lucas Vila in the 19th minute. Malaysia equalised a minute into the third quarter through Nik Aiman Nik Rozemi, before a fracas broke out between both teams.

Argentina's Juan Lopez was seen remonstrating with Aiman, seemingly claiming the Malaysian had not touched the ball before it went into the goal.

As they walked back to the halfway line, other players got involved in the ensuing argument, with Argentina goalkeeper Juan Vivakdi held back by several players as he squared up to Nabil Fiqri.

After the game resumed, Argentina's penalty corner specialist Gonzalo Peillat put Argentina ahead from their second penalty corner in the 46th minute.

Two minutes later, Lucas scored his second goal from a counter attack and in the last minute of regulation, Azri Hassan added the second goal for Malaysia.

This is the third defeat in as many matches for Malaysia against Argentina.

They lost 5-2 in the group stages at last year’s World League Round Three and then 2-1 in the semifinals.

The second warm-up game will be held at the same venue at 8pm tomorrow.

The Malay Mail

Peillat turns hero for Argentina in friendly against M’sia

By Kng Zheng Guan

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia got off to a limp start in their preparation for the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup hockey tournament after losing 3-2 to Argentina in a friendly match.

Argentina, ranked No. 2 in the world, snatched an early lead through Lucas Vila in the 19th minute at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil yesterday.

The national team equalised in the 31st minute through an effort by Nik Aiman Nik Rozemi.

The Malaysian goal however, almost started a fracas when Argentina’s Juan Lopez furiously claiming that Nik Aiman’s goal was not valid.

Both teams were boiling with Argentina’s goalkeeper Juan Vi­val­di and Malaysia’s Nabil Fiqri going head-to-head before the referee intervened to cool things off.

When the match resumed after half-time, it was Argentina who took charge again through the efforts of Gonzalo Peillat.

The 26-year-old penalty corner specialist put the South Americans back in the lead through a penalty corner flick in the 46th minute.

Peillat, who starred for Terengganu in the Malaysian Hockey League (MHL) earlier this month, then added his second goal two minutes later through a swift counter-attack.

Azri Hassan pulled one back for Malaysia in the first minute of injury time (60+1) but it was nothing more than a scant consolation.

The defeat is now Malaysia’s third straight loss to Argentina.

They were beaten 5-2 in the group stages of the World League Round Three and then 2-1 in the semi-finals last year.

It is certainly not the best preparation for the Sultan Azlan Shah meet from March 3-10 in Ipoh and national coach Stephen Van Huizen has a lot to work on when they take on Argentina in a second friendly at the same venue today.

The Star of Malaysia

Argentina power through to win final test

Photo: Rodrigo Jaramillo, worldsportpics.com

The Vantage Black Sticks Women have been defeated 2-1 by hosts Argentina in the fifth and final test in Buenos Aires.

After a goalless first half, Argentina struck in the 50th minute when Martina Cavallero found space in the New Zealand circle to slip a shot past goalkeeper Grace O’Hanlon.

Five minutes later the hosts doubled their advantage with Magdalena Fernandez converting from open play.

With less than two minutes on the clock, Kelsey Smith gave the Kiwis a glimmer of hope when she went on a run into circle and beat the keeper from a tight angle.

Time was not on New Zealand’s side however with Argentina able to hold on and seal the series with four wins and one loss.

Head coach Mark Hager said it was a disappointing way to end the series with plenty of things to work on.

“Argentina dominated much of the game, especially in the first half and we didn’t do a good job of containing them,” he said.

“Some of our work in the one-on-one contests and defence was poor but Grace had a good game and made some very important saves to keep us in the game.”

The Kiwis now travel home to New Zealand for final preparations ahead of the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games from 5-14 April.

ARGENTINA: 2 (Martina Cavallero, Magdalena Fernandez)
Halftime: 0-0

Hockey New Zealand Media release

Sultan Azlan Shah Cup: Indian captain Sardar Singh confident of good show

Sardar Singh - File Photo, PTI

India's hockey captain Sardar Singh says his side has enough fire power to tackle strong opponents such as world number one Australia and reigning Olympic champions Argentina at the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup, beginning Saturday.

India will open their campaign against world number two Argentina on Saturday. The experienced mid-fielder exuded confidence that India can come up with a solid show in the season-opening event which also features England, Ireland and hosts Malaysia.

"It is extremely important to start the tournament well. A good match against Argentina will give the team the confidence for the rest of the matches to follow. Every match in the Pool Stage will be important to ensure a place in the final. We have beaten teams like Australia and England in the past and have done well against Argentina too. We just need to ensure we play in a structured manner and execute the team's plans perfectly," Sardar said ahead of team's departure.

"It will be a good competition and Sultan Azlan Shah Cup has for long been a tournament that sets the pace for the rest of the calendar year and doing well here will be important for us. We have had a grueling camp in SAI, Bengaluru where the focus was on taking our attack and defensive skills to the next level," stated the 31-year-old.

In the previous edition, India had finished third after beating New Zealand 4-0 while Great Britain won the title after beating Australia 4-3 in the final.

In the Pool Stage though India had a mixed outing with a 2-2 draw against Great Britain in their first match, followed by 3-0 win against New Zealand in their second match, but lost to Australia 1-3 before a narrow 4-3 win against Japan. But it was the 0-1 loss against hosts Malaysia that had dented their chance to enter the Final.

Since the tournament's inception in 1983, the Indian team has lifted the trophy five times (1985, 1991, 1995, 2009) while they shared the trophy with South Korea in 2010. In 2016, when Sardar Singh last captained the Indian team, they had ended the tournament with a silver medal after losing 0-4 to Australia in the Final.

"It is always a proud moment to lead the Indian team. But my role will be no different from what I have been doing in the camp where we seniors have taken the responsibility to guide the junior players in the squad. At tournament too, it will be important to help them shake off the initial nervousness and I am confident with senior players like Ramandeep Singh, SK Uthappa, Surender Kumar and Talwinder Singh and very talented junior players, we will come up with a good show," signed off the charismatic mid-fielder.

Daily News & Analysis

League Play-Offs head to Birmingham!

With the 2022 Commonwealth Games recently awarded to Birmingham and their University women's Investec Premier Division battling for top spot, it's a great time for the sport in the city!

In addition to this the annual Men's and Investec Women's league play-offs featuring the three Conference winners and the ninth placed Premier Division team playing off for two Premier Division places in 2018-19.

This tournament will conclude at University of Birmingham on the same weekend; the first round of matches having been held at Nottingham the Sunday beforehand, 22 April.

Hockey and Birmingham have strong ties with a whole host of current and former England athletes playing for the University side.

Of the current women's team Sophie Bray, Emily Defroand, Ellie Watton, Hannah Martin and Anna Toman are all former players while Livy Paige, Erica Sanders and Lily Owsley remain part of the team.

The pitches are housed in a picturesque setting with the Old Joe clock tower on Chancellor's Court making an eye-catching backdrop.

Tickets to our domestic league finals as well as the Investec Girls Schools Championships can be bought here.

England Hockey Board Media release

Norazlin has brothers to thank for as she eyes win

By Aftar Singh

All the way: Norazlin Sumantri (in orange) is ready for action against the Blue Warriors in the semi-finals of the Vivian May Soars Cup today.

KUALA LUMPUR: Norazlin Sumantri hopes to keep her family tradition going strong in Malaysian hockey.

The Selangor-born player has represented Malaysia 85 times in the last seven years and says her brothers are her inspiration.

Her elder brother Norhizzat featured in the 2013 Junior World Cup in New Delhi while her youngest brother Norshafiq is a national player.

Norhizzat and Norshafiq also featured for Tenaga Nasional in the Premier Division of Malaysia Hockey League (MHL) this year.

The 23-year-old Norazlin is a prominent midfielder in the Women’s League and today, she will play for Terengganu Ladies when the team clash with Blue Warriors in the semi-finals of the Vivian May Soars Cup (overall Cup) at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil.

Norazlin, who is in the training squad for the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia from April 4-15, said Norhizzat encouraged her to take up hockey 13 years ago.

The Star of Malaysia

MHC: Competitions Committee retires its members

By Jugjet Singh

THE Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) Competitions Committee on Monday 'retired' eight of its members and are looking for new blood for another term.

Competitions Committee manager Brian Fernandez said he was instructed to write the thank you emails to all their members by chairman George Koshy.

"The members were recruited for a one-year period, which expired on Feb 26 and so I was instructed by our chairman to send them emails informing them of the decision.

"There is nothing controversial about the move, and its just a normal procedure which we have done before," said Brian.

The members, who served for a year, said they only attended one meeting on June 10 last year.

"We have also sent out emails to states to nominate new members who will be approved by our chairman.

"The appointment is based on a zonal structure where northern, southern, central as well as Sabah and Sarawak representatives are invited to join," said Brian.

Jugjet's World of Field Hockey

World Cup winner Mansoor fighting for life

Anwar Zuberi

KARACHI: Pakistan’s former celebrated goal-keeper and ex-Olympian Mansoor Ahmed is fighting for life at a local hospital where he was admitted on Friday after his condition deteriorated, sources close to him said on Tuesday.

“Mansoor has been shifted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) due to heart ailment,” sources told Dawn.

Mansoor’s mother, who has arrived from the US recently, called neighbours for help after his son suffered a fits attack and rushed to a nearby hospital on Friday, the sources said.

His two other brothers have also arrived here from abroad besides his sister.

The doctors are describing his condition as ‘serious’ and asked for prayers.

Mansoor, who played for the country from 1986 to 2000, was a member of the Pakistan team that won gold at the 1994 World Cup in Sydney.

According to sources, cardiac pacemaker and seven stents were implanted in Mansoor’s heart sometime back to keep his heart functioning.

Representatives of high-ranking civil and military officials, high-ups of Customs, where Mansoor is employed, players and organisers of the game are visiting the hospital to enquire about his health.

Meanwhile, it has been learnt that the PHF president retired Brig Khalid Sajjad Khokhar, has assured to send Mansoor abroad for treatment if need arises.

Our Sports Reporter adds from Lahore: Former Olympians Naveed Alam and Mohammad Usman have appealed to the government and other hockey lovers to help ailing Mansoor.

“Mansoor is in the ICU of a hospital in Karachi fighting for his life and the nation should pray for his health. I want to appeal to the government, the Pakistan Hockey Federation and all generous people to help Mansoor in his difficult time,” Naveed said in a video message.

“It was disappointing when I received the news about Mansoor’s problem. The government spends billion of rupees on many projects. It should also spend on players like Mansoor who have enlightened the name of the country at the world level. Once we succeed to save

our heroes, we can be able to call this nation a responsible one which never forgets its heroes,” Naveed said.

Meanwhile, Usman said Mansoor was an asset of the country and he would like to appeal to the government, the federation and every institution to come forward in helping him out of his misery.

Usman said Mansoor deserved medical treatment wherever possible in the world, and added that Mansoor had rendered exemplary services for the nation in the field of hockey, so he was a great asset whom everyone should protect.


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