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NST Online: Sports

KLHC triumph in fiery final

Posted: 19 Mar 2011 10:56 AM PDT

KLHC’s Azlan Misron (third from right) makes an attempt at goal against Sapura in the final of the TNB Cup at the Tun Razak Stadium yesterday. KLHC won 3-1. — Picture by Osman Adnan

KLHC's Azlan Misron (third from right) makes an attempt at goal against Sapura in the final of the TNB Cup at the Tun Razak Stadium yesterday. KLHC won 3-1. — Picture by Osman Adnan

KUALA Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC) claimed their second double when they beat Sapura 3-1 in the final of the TNB Cup at the Tun Razak Stadium yesterday.

The first double was in 2008 and yesterday's effort earned them RM60,000 while Sapura RM40,000.

A crowd of 4,000 watched the sizzling final and it did not take long to get the crowd excited as Azlan Misron's cross found Nabil Fiqri who gave KLHC an early lead in the first minute.

Sapura were forced to open up the match after that and started making numerous counter attacks, but failed to find the equaliser despite four penalty corners as S. Kuhan was off colour.

KLHC resorted to defending and only started attacking in the last 10 minutes of the first half, but could not increase the lead as three penalty corners were wasted by Razie Rahim.

After the breather, KLHC mounted a swift attack in the 36th minute to consolidate their lead but Ismail Abu just missed.

Sapura kept on pushing for the equaliser and in the 46th minute, Korean import Lim Woo Geun sent in a sizzling penalty corner flick which drew them level but only for two minutes.

KLHC's Amerullah Aziz took it upon himself and made a darting run, and found the foot of a Sapura player in the 48th minute to win a penalty corner. Razie cooly flicked home their second and his 27th goal of the Malaysia Hockey League.

Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin, who had a poor match thus far, suddenly sprung into action in the 58th minute and scored a field goal to give Sapura a 3-1 lead.

There was a brief commotion in the 59th minute when Rodzhanizam Radzi of Sapura took a swipe at KLHC's Shahrun Nabil and umpire Nazmi Kamaruddin brought it under control by flashing the red card to Rodzhanizam while Shahrun received the yellow for retaliating.

"It was a highly charged but entertaining final and my players deserved the double as they never lost a match other than the Charity Shield (against Tenaga Nasional)," said KLHC coach K. Dharmaraj.

Meanwhile, in the bronze medal battle Yayasan Negri Sembian drew first blood when Muhammad Imran converted a penalty corner in the 16th minute, but Tenaga Nasional refused to cave in easily.

The tide was turned by Faizal Saari who scored a brace in the 25th and 45th minute, before Mahinder Singh zipped the match shut with a field attempt in the 67th minute and TNB were RM30,000 richer.

YNS received RM20,000 for finishing fourth.

ROLL-OF-HONOUR -- Top Scorer: Razi Rahim (27 goals, KLHC); Fairplay: Armed Forces Airod (RM3,000); Man-of-the-Final: Roslan Jamaluddin (KLHC); Man-of-the-Tournament: Azlan Misron (KLHC); Best Goalkeeper: S. Kumar (Tenaga)

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East Coast teams seize semi-final slots

Posted: 19 Mar 2011 08:36 AM PDT

By Zainuddin Muhammad and J.J Shah

KELANTAN secured a convincing 3-0 victory over Felda United in Kota Baru yesterday, winning 5-2 on aggregate, and dashing the club side's hopes of their first appearance in the FA Cup semi-finals.

National striker Norshahrul Idlan Talaha turned provider in the 18th minute when his through ball found S. Chanturu and put Kelantan in the lead with a brilliant finish.

Norshahrul then extended the homesters' lead with a first-timer past Felda goalkeeper Hamsani Ahmad in the 66th minute.

Striker Nizad Ayub rounded up Kelantan's brilliant performance with a third in the final minute of the match.

Kelantan will face Selangor in the semi-finals, scheduled on May 13 and 16.

Amri Yahyah's brace helped Selangor overcome Premier League side Johor 2-1 at the Larkin Stadium for a 5-2 aggregate victory.

Both teams had a fair share of the possession in the opening minutes but it was the visitors who took the lead through Amri Yahyah in the 29th minute.

Johor continued to press hard but failed to find the breakthrough in the first half.

Amri added his second of the night by finishing off a free kick from Hardi Jaafar in the 49th minute. Selangor fell asleep after their second goal, allowing the Johor to dictate the pace.

Johor's persistence paid dividends when former Negri Sembilan striker Norizam Salaman reduced the deficit in the 58th minute.

The homesters pressed hard for more goals but failed to find the breakthrough.

Terengganu staged a stunning fight back to send Perak crashing out of the tournament as Joseph Kallang's superb performance in his side's 3-1 victory earned them a slim 5-4 aggregate win to be the third east coast side to qualify for the semi-finals.

It did not go as planned at the Sultan Nasiruddin Shah Stadium when referee Nagor Amir Noor Muhammad stopped the match after five minutes due to faulty flood lights.

But the minor hiccup was rectified and the match resumed after a 16-minute delay.

Reshafiq Alwi opened accounts for Terengganu in the 29th minute with a superb finish off a cross from Joseph.

Former national player Manaf Mamat added their second after deflecting the ball off Joseph's cross in the 51st minute

But Perak, who won 3-2 in the first leg, silenced the fans in Kuala Terengganu when Akmal Rizal Rakhli scored from a free kick in the 74th minute.

Abdul Hadi Yahya put the result beyond doubt by extending Terengganu's lead four minutes later. Terengganu face Pahang in the semi-finals.

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