Sport

Published: Tuesday February 11, 2014 MYT 8:04:00 PM
Updated: Tuesday February 11, 2014 MYT 10:01:52 PM

Juniors barred from playing in Division One

The National Juniors in training last year. National Juniors coach S. Arulselvaraj wants them to train together in preparation for next year’s Junior Asia Cup.

The National Juniors in training last year. National Juniors coach S. Arulselvaraj wants them to train together in preparation for next year’s Junior Asia Cup.

KUALA LUMPUR: The National Juniors will be barred from playing in Division One of the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL), which begins on March 16.

Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) president Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah, who chaired the executive board meeting on Tuesday, said that the juniors would not be allowed to feature in the MHL “because of national interest”.

“National Juniors coach S. Arulselvaraj wants them to train together in preparation for next year’s Junior Asia Cup, which is the qualifying tournament for the 2016 Junior World Cup, which will be held in New Delhi.

“We want to prepare a solid team for next year’s Junior Asia Cup ... and also put up a strong challenge in the 2016 Junior World Cup,” said Tengku Abdullah.

Malaysia finished a respectable fourth in the Junior World Cup in New Delhi last December.

Arulselvaraj will use the ongoing Under-19 MHC-Milo-NSC Malaysian Junior Hockey League (MHJL) to call up about 45 players for training.

The MHL Division One is expected to end on May 18.

Tengku Abdullah, however, said that the National Juniors will feature in the Razak Cup in Kuantan in August.

“The Juniors will also play in the Premier Division of MHL in October,” said Tengku Abdullah, who hopes to get at least eight teams to feature in the national women’s hockey league, which also begins on March 16.

The closing date for entry to the women’s league, which offers a total prize money of RM33,000, is Feb 28.

Tags / Keywords: hockey, National Juniors, Arulselvaraj, Junior Asia Cup, Malaysian Hockey Confederation, MHC

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