PETALING JAYA: The national pre-Olympic football squad's two-match playing tour of Bangkok scheduled from April 15-21 has been called off because of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) threat.
The FA of Malaysia (FAM) may now send the team to Indonesia to prepare for the second round tie against winners of the between Turkmenistan and India.
The first-leg match will be played in Kuala Lumpur on May 3 and the return leg is scheduled for June 7.
So far, the FAM have confirmed two friendly matches against the Jordanian national side in KL on April 25 and 28.
Assistant coach B. Sathianathan said yesterday: The trip to Bangkok is off. The players will start to assemble for the final phase of training on Thursday.
The team need at least four matches before they open their pre-Olympic campaign.
We hope the trip to Indonesia will materialise because we need to test some of the new recruits in international matches.
There are six newcomers, including four players from the national Under-21 squad, in the 25-member training squad.
The four from the national Under-21 squad are striker R. Surendran and defenders Mat Saiful Mohamed, Yusri Dermaraju and M. Ravinthiran.
The newcomers are defender P. Gunalan and striker Azralan Azmi.