SSTMI beat league champs BJSS to retain TNB Cup

PETALING JAYA: After losing the Malaysia Junior Hockey League (MJHL) title, SSTMI Thunderbolts captain Saiful Shahril Saiful Bahri and teammates vowed revenge in the TNB Cup.

Saiful led by example with two goals in the final as they beat league champions BJSS Thunder-bolts 4-1 at the National Hockey Stadium on Thursday.

Shahril, who was voted the Most Valuable Player in the final, admitted that finishing third in the league was hard to swallow.

But instead of dwelling on it, he told the players retaining the TNB Cup was the best chance to atone for their failure.

“It’s an immense feeling to defend the Cup. It was not easy because we lost to them in the league.

“We were down when we failed to win the title but I told them that it should spur us to make amends,” he said.

“This tournament has taught us about perseverance. We learnt never to give up and to rise from the ashes.

“We also learnt to take defeat in our stride and more importantly to come back stronger.

“As for my two goals, it would not have happened if it wasn’t for my teammates. This was a good team effort all around. A brilliant way to end the year.”

BJSS took the lead in the fourth minute through Wan Muhammad Najmie Ahmad Dzaib but SSTMI fought back with Shahril burying two penalty corners in the seventh and 10th minute.

A two-minute blitz saw SSTMI extending the advantage when Mohd Muhibuddin Moharam and Syarman Mat Tee sounded the board in the 36th and 37th minute respectively.

Coach Zaidi Zainuddin said the spirit shown by boys was exemplary.

“We had a good mix of players. The national juniors in the squad were tremendous, guiding the others by sharing their knowledge.

“I believe that spurred us to do well in the Cup competition.”

In the third-fourth playoff match, two goals from Muhammad Noor Firdaus Rosdi saw AHP-SSP-MSP Thunderbolts beat SMKDBL-PHJ-MSNJ 2-1.

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