Monday, April 13, 2015

Silver medallists Malaysia ended as wooden spoonists

SILVER medallists Malaysia ended as wooden spoonists when they were beaten 3-1 By Canada in a penalty shoot-out in the 24th Edition of the Azlan Shah Cup today.

World champions Australia were taken also taken to a shoot out by gritty New Zealand after the match ended 2-2, before the Kiwis could lay their hands on the totle.

India and South Korea also went into penalty shoot out after the match ended 2-2.
Australia's goals were scored by Jamie Dwyer in the 50th and Mark Knowles in the 60th, while the NZ goals were scored by Andy Hayward in the fifth and 58th minutes.

In the shoot out, the Kiwis won 3-1 to deny Australia their ninth title. It was New Zealand’s second title in 24 Editions.

While in the earlier shoot-out, India claimed the bronze 4-1.

Malaysia's match ended 4-4 and had to be decided by shoot-out. And from back-to-back silver medals in 2014 and 2015, Malaysia ended last.

In the shoot-out, Firhan Ashaari, Haziq Samsul and Nabil Fiqri missed their attempts, with the only goal coming from Faizal Saari.

Malaysia played under pouring rain, but still, the stadium was half-filled when the match started at 3.40pm.

Razie Rahim ignited the fire with a second minute penalty corner, but Canada equalised via Gabriel Ho-Garcia off a field attempt in the 16th minute.

But three minutes later, Faizal Saari perfected a penalty corner to give Malaysia the lead again, and Firhan Ashaari made it 3-1 in the 23rd minute when he slotted home a field goal.

It continued raining, but a determined Canada kept pushing forward and were rewarded when Ho-Garcia slotted home his second and the score stood at 3-2 at half-time.

And three minutes into the half-time, 33rd minute, Ho-Garcia scored another field goal for a hat-trick and Malaysia looked like they might lose it.

Faizal then got his brace in the 37th minute, and Malaysia were back in command at 4-3. But Matthew Sarmento again gave Canada a life-line in the 49th with a field attempt to make it 4-4.
Malaysia had beaten Canada 4-1 in their last pool match on Saturday.

RESULTS: Final -- Australia 2 New Zealand 2 (NZ win shoot out 3-1); Third-Fourth: India 2 South Korea 2 (India win shoot-out 4-1); Fifth-Sixth: Malaysia 4 Canada 4 (Canada win shoot-out 3-1)

By Jugjet Singh Randhawa  - NST

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