KUALA LUMPUR: Tenaga Nasional’s strength in attack will be greatly affected with the absence of two national players when the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL) gets under way.
Mohd Firhan Ashaari has yet to recover from a knee injury picked up last June while seasoned campaigner Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin Tengku Abdul Jalil has joined reigning league champions Universiti Kuala Lumpur (UniKL).
Coach Nor Saiful Zaini said that they would definitely miss the duo’s services.
“It is unfortunate that Firhan still needs another two months to recover. He will also miss the chance to be called up for national training in March.
“Tengku Ahmad is vastly experienced and a hardworking forward who always gives his best. We wish him all the best with UniKL, ” said Nor Saiful.
In their absence, Nor Saiful has surprisingly included two young forwards – Muhd Amirul Hanif Mamat, a Form Four student of Bukit Jalil Sports School (BJSS) and 17-year-old Muhajir Abdu Rauf from Sabah Malaysia Sports School.
“Although both are very young, we have faith in them. They recently featured in the six-nation Sultan of Johor Cup (last October) and did well to help Malaysia finish third.
“They have also proven themselves in training and it will be a good experience for them in the MHL, ” added Nor Saiful.
The former international is optimistic that their all-local line-up can hold their own against the foreign-powered teams in the eight-team league.
“We are gunning for the double – league and overall titles, ” said a confident Nor Saiful.
Tenaga will open their campaign against TNB-Thunderbolt at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil on Jan 10.