DEDY TURNS HERO FOR MALACCA IN FINAL

Dedy Ariyadi Jumaidi turned hero as underdogs Malacca lifted the TNB 53rd Tun Abdul Razak Cup Division One crown with a 1-0 win over defending champions Perak at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil.

Dedy’s 30th minute goal came off a deflection from Mohammed Firdaus Omar’s shot outside the circle, beating national team No 2 goalkeeper Roslan Jamaluddin.

This is Malacca’s third victory in the Tun Abdul Razak Cup having won the title in 2005 by defeating Johor 2-1 in the final. In 2009, Malacca clinched the crown by beating the Project 2013 team 2-1.

Malacca won RM10,000 for finishing as champions while Perak, who were aiming for their third back-to-back title since 2013, took home RM7,000 and Kuala Lumpur RM5,000 for finishing third.

“It was a superb effort from my players and credit is due to the entire team for playing with sheer determination and grit. This is a historic moment as the Razak Cup has always eluded our grips,” said Malacca coach, S. Velappan.

His Perak counterpart, K. Yogeswaran, however, poured accolades on Malacca for their feat despite admitting that he had not expected his team to go down in the final.

“Congratulations to Malacca. They truly deserved this Cup as they played very well. We had our chances but could not turn them into goals. Luck was just not on our side,” said a dejected Yogeswaran.

Kuala Lumpur once again drew on all their reserves to edged Johor 3-2 in penalty shootout after the two teams were tied 2-2 in regulation time.

Mohammed Syamim Yusof had given KL the lead by the third minute via a field goal but Johor went ahead 2-1 with field goals from Mohammad Syafiq Zain (28th) and Faiz Helmi Jali (56th) until KL struck back through Harvinder Singh two minutes later from a field goal to force the game into penalty shootout.

Former national player Baljit Singh Sarjab scored a hat-trick as the Royal Malaysian Police defeated Selangor 6-2 in the Division Two final and in the process gained promotion to the elite Division One event next year.

For the efforts, Police also took home the winner’s purse of RM5, 000 while Selangor received RM3,000 and Kelantan RM2,000 for finishing third in the league.

The Cops, who edged Selangor 3-2 in the preliminary round, fired on all cylinders with Baljit’s penalty corner goals in the 26th, 38th and 41st minutes, taking his personal tally to 17 goals in the Division Two tournament.

Azreen Rizal Nasir had earlier given Police a 2-0 lead via a third minute penalty corner strike and followed up with a field goal 11 minutes later until Baljit caused further dent to Selangor’s aspiration. Kevinder Singh added to former champions Selangor misery with a field goal five minutes into the fourth quarter.

Selangor’s goals came through Mohammad Noor Faez from a 25th minute penalty corner and Muhammad Ameerullah Abdul Aziz 39th minute field goal.

“I was expecting a close fight in the final as only won 3-2 in the league. Our defence played well today especially the goalkeeper. We also took our chances well in the penalty corners,” said Police head coach, K. Rajan.

RESULTS – Division One Final: Malacca 1 Perak 0.
Third-Fourth Playoff: Kuala Lumpur 2 Johor 2 (KL win 3-2 in penalty shootout).
ROLL OF HONOUR:
Man of the Match: B. Namasivayam (Malacca)
Best Goalkeeper: Mohammed Hairi Abdul Rahman (Johor)
Top Scorer: Faizal Saari (Terengganu) – 15 goals
Best Player: Dedy Ariyadi Jumaidi (Malacca)
Fair Play: Terengganu
Division Two Final: Police 6 Selangor 2.

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