KLHC edge closer to the title with narrow win over Maybank

KUALA LUMPUR: The Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC) edged Maybank 3-2 to consolidate their position at the top of the Premier Division of the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL) at the Tun Razak Stadium yesterday.

KLHC have 28 points after 11 matches and are just three matches away from clinching their second league title.

Universiti Kuala Lumpur (UniKL) replaced Yayasan Negri Sembilan (YNS) in second spot after edging Armed Forces-Airod 2-1.

UniKL now have 23 points while YNS, who lost 1-2 to Sapura, slipped to third on 21 points.

In the match of the day, Maybank’s dismal run in the MHL continued as they have only six points after 10 games.

KLHC could have won by a bigger margin had they been more clinical with their finishing.

Mohamed Razie Rahim got the ball rolling in the seventh minute with a penalty corner goal. Four minutes later Annuar Sham Kamar made it 2-0 with a field goal.

The Tigers, known for their tenacity, reduced the deficit in the 15th minute through N. Ugentheren’s field goal.

Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin restored KLHC’s two-goal cushion with the third goal in the 47th minute.

Although the Tigers got a second goal in the 70th minute through a penalty corner hit taken by Engku Abdul Malek, it was simply too late.

KLHC coach K. Dharmaraj was relieved to get the win as it ensured his team top spot for another week.

“The title is ours to lose. We could win it by this weekend if the chasing pack lose ground. Otherwise, it could be over by next weekend,” he said.

KLHC do not have a match today while the Tigers will take on Armed Forces-Airod at the KL Hockey Stadium in a crucial clash that could decide their chances of a sixth-placing in the nine-team standings.

In the other match, goals by Izwan Firdas (39th minute) and S. Kuhan (49th) were enough to give Sapura all three points against YNS, who replied through Deepak Thakur in the 45th minute.

Sapura now have 18 points and remain in fifth place while YNS have 21 points.

YNS will play Tenaga Nasional today while Sapura will take on UiTM.

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