Friday, 15 July 2011

National Team To Play Five Friendly Matches During Fasting Month

KUALA LUMPUR, July 14 (Bernama) -- The national hockey team will play five friendly matches against Japan, from Aug 7 to 14, although it will be the fasting month.

Malaysian Hockey Federation (MHF) secretary Maninderjit Singh said the series of friendly matches against Japan were part of the team's preparations for the 2012 London Olympics qualifier next year.

"The National Sports Institute (ISN) will also take the opportunity to test the endurance of the players during the fasting month. The test will be vital since the 2012 London Olympics from July 27 to Aug 12, falls during the fasting month as well," he told Bernama here today.

Apart from the senior squad under coach Tai Beng Hai, the Project 2013 team will also play against the Japanese team on Aug 11.

Maninderjit said the players in the national squad that returns from a training stint in Holland on July 20, would have a very busy and tight programme.

"Once they return from Holland, the players will be involved in the Razak Cup competition in Melaka from July 21-30, followed by the friendly series against Japan.

"After the matches against Japan, the team will head to Ordos, China for the Asia Champion Trophy from Sept 3-11," he said.

According to Maninderjit the main challenge faced by the national team would be the Champion Challenge in Johannesburg, South Africa from Nov 26 to Dec 4.

"The MHF's target is for the team to improve the ranking from 15 to 12 by year end. For that to happen, the team must finish at least fifth in the six-team competition in Johannesburg," he said.


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