Tuesday, July 07, 2009


Thanks to George Koshy I am able to provide results as soon as the match is over

Malaysia booked their place in the semi final of the Champions Challenge II when they defeated France. 4-2

With the win Malaysia has collected six points and will end their preliminary round with a match against Russia on Thursday. And irrespective of the result, Malaysia will be one of the two teams from Group B to play in the semi final as neither Austria or Russia will be able to overtake them if they win their matches against France and Malaysia respectively.

Ismail Abu opened scoring for Malaysia in the 5th minute before France drew level on the 23rd minute through Yanick Sxhament. But Mohd Amin Rahim ensured that Malaysia went into the halftime break 2-1 ahead when he converted a penalty stroke in the 33rd minute after an infringement on S. Selvaraju.

Eight minutes after the breather and Malaysia were 4-1 ahead thanks to goals by Azlan Misron (37th minute penalty corner) and Mohd Razie (41st minute) but France reduced the deficit to 4-2 through Arnoud Becuwe two minutes from time.

In an earlier match, Austria and Russia played to an exciting 4-4 draw but the result did both teams no favour as they had lost their opening matches.

Russia took the lead going 3-0 up within the first 16 minutes. The first of which came in the 4th minute of play through a precise drag execution from marksman Sergeev. Russia continued to apply pressure and were rewarded with a second goal just ten minutes later when they made a fast break up the right hand side to find Mokrousov who fired home to double his sides lead. Only two minutes passed before Russia were on the board once again courtesy of Azarov in the 16th minute.

The third goal appeared to be a wake up call for the Austrians as they began to create some attacking play of their own which paid off just before half time when Korper was on hand for his country to slot home with a strike from the top of the circle.

Austria started the second half in the same vein as they had finished the first, on the hunt for another goal, this time it was Stanzl who was on hand to close the gap when he struck home from a penalty corner to close the gap to 2-3. Russia secured another penalty corner in the 48th minute and Sergeev was on form once again to drag home to score his sides fourth goal. With 22 left on the clock

Austria surged looking to get a point from the game and in the 58th minute they scored the goal of the match when Stanzl slide on his front across the circle to meet a cross to fire it home passed the keeper, the equaliser came with just 7 minutes to go when they secured their final penalty corner of the game which Korper dragged home to make it four all.