SSTMI-Thunderbolt's Mohd Najmi Farizal Jazlan (left) gets the ball away from MBPJ's Faiq Razin Zariq during their match on Jan 24, 2014. MBPJ are now in second spot, behind Thunderbolt, in Division One of the MJHL.
KUALA LUMPUR: Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) look set to finish as runners-up again in Division One of the MHC-Milo-NSC Malaysian Junior Hockey League (MJHL) this year.
MBPJ defeated KLSS-KLHC 2-1 at the KL Hockey Stadium on Sunday for their fourth win and jump over Universiti Kuala Lumpur (UniKL) into second spot in Division One with 12 points from five matches. UniKL have nine points but with a game in hand.
MBPJ, however, are unlikely to overtake leaders SSTMI-Thunderbolt, who have the maximum 15 points from five matches.
A win over UniKL on Feb 15 should see MBPJ retain their runners-up status. UniKL will wrap up their league fixtures with a match against Anderson on Feb 16.
In Sunday’s match, KLSS took the lead through a Nur Faiz Rosli field goal in the eighth minute before MBPJ equalised seconds before the break through Nor Ikhwab Rahman’s penalty corner attempt.
Nazirul Zebidi made sure MBPJ earned all three points when he netted the winner in the 66th minute – off another penalty corner attempt.
MBPJ coach Azlan Saufi heaved a huge sigh of relief at the final whistle.
“We did just enough to beat KLSS. I’m happy with the players’ commitment in fighting back from a goal down as it gives us the chance to finish second again,” he said.
Azlan, however, does not think that his side will have any advantage when they take on UniKL on Friday.
“UniKL were quite unlucky in their loss to SSTMI-Thunderbolt because their penalty corner battery did not function,” he said.
“I think UniKL are a very strong side. We can’t take them lightly, or we’ll be punished.”
Azlan said they would use the next few days to prepare well for the match against UniKL.
“We’ve always known that to win the title or finish second, two matches would be very important. One was the game against Thunderbolt, which we lost. The other is the match against UniKL,” said Azlan.
“The title is out of our hands. Even if the Thunderbolt lose their last match, they still have a big goal difference to bank on.”