BJSS player Abdul Khaliq Hamirin (left) hits the ball pass MBPJ's Mohd Nur Amin Zulkipli during their Malaysia Junior Hockey League quarter-final match at National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil on Sunday. - IZRAFFIQ ALIAS/ The Star
KUALA LUMPUR: Former champions Universiti Kuala Lumpur (UniKL) found their form in time to storm into the semi-finals of the MHC-Milo-NSC Malaysian Junior Hockey League.
Having edged Division Two champions Politeknik Johor in the 3-2 in the quarter-finals first leg on Friday, UniKL strolled to a 2-0 win at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil on Sunday for a 5-2 aggregate.
Mohamed Shahfirul Aqmal gave UniKL the lead after nine minutes and Mohamed Rahimi Iskandar, who netted twice in the first leg, scored the second in the 31st minute.
UniKL team manager Mohamed Faiz Isa was delighted with the players’ performance.
“We were better than them and today the players showed the right attitude. In a number of matches previously, we gave our opponents too much space. We have made the semi-finals and I am glad the players took up the challenge and made the cut,” said Mohamed Faiz.
Politeknik team manager Mohamed Rafi Solaiman said their defence proved to be the weakest link.
“The loss of our skipper Lukman Nul Hakim due to suspension was sorely felt. Some of our defenders were also carrying light injuries and that could have affected them.
“But we are not taking anything away from UniKL. They took their chances well, but we too had our fair share of chances,” added Mohamed Rafi.
UniKL, a former league and overall champions, will play Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) in the first leg of the semi-finals on Wednesday. The return leg is slated for Friday.
MBPJ, 4-1 winners over Bukit Jalil Sports School (BJSS) on Friday, were in an uncompromising mood as they won the return leg 4-0 for an 8-1 aggregate. Mohamed Emir Afzan (16th and 38th minutes), Abdul Halim Jalil (40th) and Mohamed Nor Ikhwan (61st) were the scorers.
Defending champions SSTMI-Thunderbolt qualified for the last four with a whopping 22-2 aggregate win over MSP Pahang Juniors. Yesterday, they cruised to a 14-2 win.
Thunderbolt will face Old La Sallians Association of Klang (Olak)-PKT in the last four. Olak, a former champion, nearly paid the price for under-estimating Malacca High School when they went down 0-2 in the second leg.
Having won 4-1 in the first leg, Olak scraped into the semi-finals on a 4-3 aggregate.