Malaysia will play their final match in the 2014 Hockey World Cup today against South Africa in the 11th and 12th places clasification match at 7.30pm (Malaysian time). You can watch it LIVE on Astro Arena (Ch 801). If Malaysia win today, they will not only secure the 11th place in this year’s tournament but also move to the 12th spot (from 13th) in FIH ranking.
I hope to see Malaysia play like they did in the first half against Belgium and defending as well as they did in the first half against Australia. They also showed some brilliant moments against Spain, especially when they were trailing by 1-4. The players need to believe in themselves and be brave, so that they can show the world what they are really capable of. I haven’t see much of Faizal Saari yet except on a few occasions when he decided to waive his magic and dribble past the defenders. I hope the high expectations placed on his shoulders as the new ‘Minarwan‘ has not affected him. Let’s hope he is just having bad patches (well, many players do) and soon will be back to his old self again.
Plus, don’t forget that we are playing in a World Cup and pitting our skills against the world’s best. We just have to admit that we haven’t reached to the level of the teams that are performing there. Not yet, but we will if we keep trying hard to reach that level. Our eight years of absence from the biggest stage in the hockey world also does not help our course. But the experience gained by competing in this tournament can be crucial to the development of hockey in this country.
Prediction: Malaysia vs South Africa
So, what is your prediction for tonight’s match? I think Malaysia can win this one in high scoring game of 4-3 or 5-4. All the best boys! Malaysia Boleh!
– Rabobank Hockey World Cup 2014: Malaysia vs South Africa