KUALA LUMPUR: Two friendlies. One draw and one loss.
No wonder national hockey coach Tai Beng Hai is unhappy.
World No. 13 Malaysia played two friendlies against Poland – on Sunday and Tuesday – at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil and drew the first 4-4 and lost the other 4-3.
Malaysia and Poland are preparing for the World League Second Round in Singapore from Jan 17-25. Malaysia are the top seeds for the tournament.
Beng Hai is particularly irked by the number of unforced errors committed by his team.
“The players made a lot of unforced errors ... especially the defenders. We conceded first and then had to chase the match,” said the former international.
“The players were also unable to give 100% in the friendlies as they’ve not played together since the Incheon Asian Games last October.
“We will watch the videos of the two friendlies and study the mistakes we made.
“We cannot afford to make the same mistakes in the tournament in Singapore. I have a week to rectify the shortcomings.”
There are 25 players in the training squad and the final 18 will be named on Friday.
Beng Hai also said that midfielder Mohd Shahrun Nabil, who did not play against Poland due to a hamstring injury, would be tested in a friendly among the 25 players before he names the squad.
Eight teams will feature in the World League Round Two in Singapore and Malaysia are in Group A with Oman, Ukraine and Fiji.
Poland are in Group B with world No. 16 Japan, Bangladesh and Singapore.
The top three teams from Singapore will qualify for the two World League semi-finals in Belgium and Argentina in June.
The World League is the qualifying tournament for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics.