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Selangor get RM5mil sponsorship from Gapurna

Wednesday February 9, 2005

Selangor get RM5mil sponsorship from Gapurna

S. SIVABALAN

SHAH ALAM: Fallen giants Selangor, who are seeking a return to top-flight football, received a major financial boost yesterday – a RM5mil shot-in-the-arm from construction firm Gapurna Group. 

FA of Selangor president Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Khir Toyo received the sponsorship on behalf of Selangor from Gapurna managing director Datuk Mohd Salim Fateh Din at the Dataran Bandaraya here. 

The Red Giants fell from grace in 2002 after after winning the Malaysia Cup and the Charity Shield. In 2003, they failed to finish in the top six in Premier One, the old format of the M–League.  

As a result, the 29-time Malaysia Cup champions failed to qualify for the new-look top-flight M–League Super League last season. 

Last season, Selangor could only finish second behind Malacca Telekom in Group A of the Premier League. They failed to win promotion. 

Selangor have gone on a massive recruitment spree this season in a concerted bid to return to the top flight. 

Former MPPJ coach Dollah Salleh took over as head coach at the end of last season, replacing caretaker coach Ismail Ibrahim. Ismail had handled the team after Argentine coach Omar Ruben Larossa left midway last season. 

During the off-season, Selangor signed two Indonesians to beef up the forward-line – striker Bambang Pamungkas and left winger Eli Aboi. 

Perak’s Mohd Khalid Jamlus, who scored six goals in the Asean Football Federation’s (AFF) Tiger Cup tournament recently, has also joined Selangor. 

Dollah has also brought with him former MPPJ striker Mohd Harris Safwan Kamal and goalkeeper Jamsari Sabian. They also kept last season's Premier League Golden Boot winner, Argentine Brian Fuentes. 

The acquisition of these players leaves Selangor with arguably the most potent forward-line in the lower division. 

Selangor, who are in Group A of the Premier League this season, opened with an impressive 4-1 win over Malacca at the Hang Jebat Stadium in Malacca last Sunday. They play Kelantan TNB in Shah Alam in their second match on Sunday. 

However, Selangor's first big test will come on Feb 23 in the FA Cup . They are drawn to meet reigning Super League champions Pahang in the first round.  

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