ANOTHER DEFEAT DOWN UNDER

Note: while other media may credit Razie for both goals, the lack of co-operation from team officials in Perth has made my task impossible as I have relied on information from hockey friends who watched the match and kept me abreast via SMS.

A defensive minded Malaysia were beaten 5-2 by Australia at the Perth Hockey Stadium in their second friendly match this evening.

Malaysia opted to have all their players in their own 25 for a large part of the match.

Perhaps the strategy adopted was to counter the strong Aussie side fielded by coach Ric Charlesworth.

Australia had the likes of three times FIH player of the year Jaime Dywer, Matt Ghodes, Christopher Cirello and Kieren Govers.

The team fielded was from a list of 28 Olympic hopefuls from their squad but they failed to get the better of a Malaysian side that opted for “parking the bus” in front of goal tactics.

Australia went ahead in the very first minute through Ghodes.

Although the Aussies were awarded penalty corners in the 17, 19 and 20th minutes, the combined efforts of Baljit Singh and Mohd Madzli Ikmar kept the score intact.

But that did not prevent the Australians for doubling their advantage via Simon Orchard.

Off Malaysia’s first foray into the opponents semi circle they were awarded a penalty corner in the 23rd minute.

The attempt by Mohd Razie Abdul Rahim sailed into goal, deflected off a defenders stick.

Australia had another penalty corner but Baljit denied them a clear shot at goal and the halftime score stood at 2-1 in favour of Australia.

Dwyer made it 3-1 in the 44th minute before Ghodes scored his second and Australia’s fourth in the 50th minute.

Liam de Young made it 5-1 in the 53rd minute but Malaysia reduced the deficit when Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin Tengku Jalil pounced on a penalty corner rebound in the 55th minute to reduce the deficit to 5-2.