AUSTRALIAN-based Quentin Cheng (pic) went to the Philippines with a hope to impress and break into the national senior football team – but his dream was all shattered in just one match.
He got to play for 20 minutes in the match against Cambodia and scored a goal – but his valiant effort ended in vain as Malaysia were sent packing early on Wednesday.
He came in as a replacement for Hadi Fayyadh Abd Razak in the 70th minute.
Malaysia were already staring at a defeat as they were trailing 0-3 but Quentin did not give up – and managed to score a goal in the 90th minute – but the damage was done as Malaysia suffered their first-ever defeat to Cambodia in SEA Games history.
Midfielder Quentin, who did not play in Malaysia’s other matches, said he tried his best to keep the team together.
“Coach told me to stay focused and be disciplined in my role. He told me to be patient and wait for my moment, ” said the 20-year-old.
“The tournament was not what we had hoped for.
“We were aiming to enter the knockout stage, but instead we were booted out early.“It’s unfortunate that my first-ever tournament for Malaysia has ended up like this.
“Overall, our team played below par in Manila. All of us are feeling down.”
For Quentin, though, the journey does not end in Manila.
He hopes to break into the first team squad of his Central Coast Mariners club in the A-League and gain as many minutes as possible in 2020.
“I want to get more games in my belt, and also add valuable minutes. I need to develop myself as a player, ” he said. “My goal is to break into the Malaysian senior team in the future.
“This tournament has taught me well, and I just want to learn and get better.”
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