Young Amir makes his mark

KUALA LUMPUR: Youngster Amir Farid Ahmad Fuzi (pic) has made quite an impression in the two hockey Test matches against Ireland that he stands a good chance of featuring in the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in Ipoh next month.

National assistant coach S. Arul Selvaraj said that the forward showed maturity in his performances.

“I’m impressed with his game. He has good ball control and didn’t lose the ball in the two friendlies,” said Arul, who took charge of the team in the second friendly as national coach Paul Revington was down with the flu.

“Amir has shown that he can blend into the national squad ... he has a good chance of earning a spot in the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup squad.”

The 22-year-old Perak-born Amir featured in the Junior Asia Cup which Malaysia won in Malacca last May.

The Tenaga Nasional player, who has been with the national training squad since last year, failed to earn a place in the Champions Challenge I in Argentina and the Asian Champions Trophy in Doha last November and December respectively.

Malaysia won the first two of the three-Test series 4-2 and 3-0 respectively. The third Test will be held at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil today (7pm).

And Arul is expecting another good performance from his men.

“They must be more aware tactically and the defenders must not get caught off guard by the Irish counter attacks,” said the former international.

“Our players must also make full use of their chances.”

All the 21 players, except for goalkeeper Khairulnizam Ibrahim, have played in the two friendlies.

There are 30 players in the national training squad and the final 18 for the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup, scheduled for March 9-17, will be named after the two friendlies against New Zealand early next month.

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