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Published: Tuesday March 11, 2014 MYT 6:39:00 PM
Updated: Tuesday March 11, 2014 MYT 10:12:36 PM

Six juniors to make international debut at Azlan Shah Cup

Mohd Shahril Saabah (right) in a file photo. He is one of the six Junior World Cup players who will be making their international debut at the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in Ipoh.

Mohd Shahril Saabah (right) in a file photo. He is one of the six Junior World Cup players who will be making their international debut at the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in Ipoh.

KUALA LUMPUR: Penalty corner drag flicker Mohd Shahril Saabah is among six Junior World Cuppers who will be making their international debut at the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in Ipoh.

The others are goalkeepers Mohd Hafizuddin Othman and Mohd Hazrul Faiz Ahmad Sobri, defender Shazril Irwan Nazli, midfielder Mohd Azri Hassan and forward Mohd Rashid Baharom.

Another five Junior World Cuppers have also been named for the tournament.

They are defenders Faiz Helmi Jali and Mohd Izad Hakimi Jamaluddin, midfielders Mohd Fitri Saari and Meor Mohamed Azuan Hassan, and forward Mohd Firhan Ashaari.

However, these five players have featured for the national senior team in previous tournaments.

That brings the number of Junior World Cup players in the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup to 11.

National chief coach K. Dharmaraj named 18 players in Ipoh on Tuesday after Malaysia played a friendly against China and Australia.

The other players in the team are defenders Azlan Misron and Ahmad Kazamirul Nasruddin, midfielders Mohd Marhan Mohd Jalil, Mohd Sukri Abdul Mutalib and Ramadan Rosli, and forwards Tengku Ahmad Tajudin and Faizal Saari.

Azlan, who is the most experienced player with 327 international caps, was named skipper.

Dharmaraj said that he picked six newcomers for the team because they have shown promise in training and friendly matches.

“I also included the juniors because a number of senior players are injured,” said Dharmaraj.

On the crock list are forward S. Selvaraju (hamstring), goalkeepers S. Kumar (hamstring) and Roslan Jamaluddin (ankle), and defenders Mohd Razie Abdul Rahim (shoulder injury) and Baljit Singh Charun, who suffered a back injury during a friendly against Canada in Malacca last week.

Dharmaraj said that despite naming a number of juniors to the squad, he hopes the team will do well in the tournament.

“This will be a good chance for the six juniors to prove themselves in Ipoh and be named for next month’s Champions Challenge I tournament in Kuantan,” said Dharmaraj.

Malaysia, who finished runners-up to Australia in the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup last year, will open their campaign against South Africa on Thursday.

Malaysia have never won the tournament, which began in 1983.

The squad

Goalkeepers: Mohd Hafizuddin Othman, Mohd Hazrul Faiz Ahmad Sobri.

Defenders: Faiz Helmi Jali, Mohd Izad Hakimi Jamaluddin, Shazril Irwan Nazli, Azlan Misron, Mohd Sukri Abdul Mutalib, Ahmad Kazamirul Nasruddin.

Midfielders: Mohd Azri Hassan, Mohd Fitri Saari, Meor Mohamed Azuan Hassan, Mohd Marhan Mohd Jalil, Ramadan Rosli.

Forwards: Mohd Shahril Saabah, Mohd Rashid Baharom, Mohd Firhan Ashaari, Tengku Ahmad Tajudin, Faizal Saari.

Tags / Keywords: hockey, Sultan Azlan Shah Cup, Dharmaraj, Mohd Shahril Saabah, Mohd Hafizuddin Othman, Mohd Hazrul Faiz Ahmad Sobri

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