KUALA LUMPUR: Defending overall champions Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) despite retaining 10 players from last year squad, struggled to beat Anderson 2-0 in the Malaysian Junior Hockey League (MJHL) Division One match at the Manjung Hockey Stadium yesterday.
Although MBPJ could not settle down fast on the bumpy pitch at Manjung, they managed to take the lead in the 26th minute from their first penalty corner which was tucked away by Amirrul Mukminin Hashim in the 26th minute.
National junior trainee Hang Edzharshay Hang Tuah netted the second goal for them in the 48th minute.
Anderson are from Ipoh but they are using the Manjung stadium for the league because the Azlan Shah Stadium in Ipoh is under renovation for the Sultan Azlan Shah tournament in May.
MBPJ coach Roslan Salikon said his players’ spirit was low during the match as they were playing without two key players – defender Aliff Falihim Mokhtar and midfielder Tuan Abdul Walid Tuan Aziz – who were released to play for Division Two outfit MSN Terengganu a few days ago.
Roslan said that team suffered because positions were reshuffled when the two players left suddenyly.
“We could not play our normal game as there was lack of understanding among the players in every departments.
“Furthermore, the bumpy pitch at Manjung made it hard for the players to stop and hit the ball well,’ said Roslan.
Roslan was unhappy with the players’ display despite the win.
“We will have to rectify the mistakes we made against Anderson before playing our next match.’ said Roslan.
Meanwhile, Bukit Jalil Sports School (BJSS) Juniors, meanwhile, bounced back from their humiliating 10-2 defeat to BJSS on Friday by chalking up a hard fought 4-2 to victory over Old La Sallians Association of Klang (Olak) at the Pandamaran Stadium in Klang yesterday.
For Olak, the former double champions, it was their second straight defeat. In the opening match on Friday, they lost 0-2 to Tenaga Nasional.
G. Kavin Kartik (6th, 66th) and Mohd Fahmi Faiz Mad Isa (37th, 43rd) each scored a brace for BJSS Juniors.
Olak replied through Rajindar Singh in the 40th and 57th minutes.
SMK Tengku Besar, last year’s Division Two champions who defeated SMK Datuk Taha 4-1 in the opening match, will face a stiff test when they play league champions BJSS in Tampin today.
Last year BJSS won all their league matches and their only defeat was at the hands of MBPJ in the final for the overall title.