Shahmie vows to raise strike rate after breakthrough

YOUNG striker Shahmie Irfan Suhaimi (pic) is in a goal rush after sounding the board for the first time on the world stage.

The 20-year-old heaved a huge sigh of relief when he got on the scoresheet after four games in Malaysia’s 13th-16th classification match against Japan which the Speedy Tigers won 3-2.

And Shahmie, the son of former international Suhaimi Ibrahim, hopes that the breakthrough will lead to a much higher strikerate in the coming competitions.

With Faizal Saari and Ramadhan Rosli now in their 30s and the likes of Shahril Saabah and Firhan Ashaari hitting 30 soon, Shahmie could be the man to lead the line in the future.

“Whenever I came on during games, I aimed to get the goals. It was frustrating when I couldn’t score in the first three games but against Japan, I’m thrilled that I finally scored,” said Shahmie, who was only included in the team after Shahril suffered a hamstring injury.

“The first goal for the country will always be special and now that I’ve done it, I can only expect to score more in the future. My job as a striker is to get the goals.

‘’If I don’t score, I won’t be satisfied.”

Shahmie said he was able to grasp much of what coach A. Arulselvaraj wanted during the games and his advice also helped him a lot to improve.

“I’m satisfied with my first World Cup, but I still have a lot to learn and under coach Arul’s guidance, I will get there.

“I hope to get more competitive outings with the senior team but now that I’m heading home, my focus will be on Maybank in the Malaysian Hockey League. I want to help them be champions.”

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