KARACHI: After registering three losses and a draw, Pakistan’s junior hockey team lost their last pool match 3-1 against hosts Malaysia at the Sultan of Johor Junior Hockey Tournament in Johor Bahru on Saturday.
Pakistan started off by gifting Malaysia a penalty corner in the fourth minute of the game, with Shahril Saabah successfully converting it to take a 1-0 lead.
Just a minute later, Malaysia received another penalty corner and while attempting to convert it, received a follow-on penalty corner which Malaysia’s Najmi Jazlan struck right into the net to extend the hosts’ lead 2-0.
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Pakistan were awarded several penalty corners but failed to get the ball past the Malaysian goalkeeper. The hosts then scored their third in the last eight minutes, with Pakistan striking a consolation penalty corner goal through Abu Mahmood in the last two minutes to end the game 3-1.
“We tried our best but our game plan and strategy was full of flaws and we need to make amends in the next match to finish the tournament at least on number five,” captain Dilber Hussain told The Express Tribune.
He added that although Pakistan’s players lacked experience, they gave the matches their best. “We just need some more time to make a perfect combination,” said Hussain.
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Pakistan are currently at the bottom of the table, and will now play the 5th/6th place match against Australia, who have so far registered one win, three losses and a draw.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 18th, 2015.
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