Hockey: Japan invite Malaysia for Olympic Test event.

Malaysia will get to test the playing surface and facilities of Hockey for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics a year in advance.

Immaterial of the fact that their road to Tokyo is tough, Malaysia are being invited by Japan to participate in the 4 nation Test event that will be held from 17-21 August.

The other two trans invited are India and New Zealand.

And that is not all for Japan is also looking forward to playing five Test matches against Malaysia in Japan this July.

However this looks highly unlikely as from the plans of the national team made available, they are scheduled to set up a training camp in Düsseldorf , Germany from 21-28 July followed by a 4 nation tournament in Spain from 29 July to 4th August followed by two matches against Holland.

Basically the national team will have a full calendar for July and August before the all important two leg final qualifiers for Olympics on October 25 and November 3.

Japan coach Siegfried Aikman said that they currently had 33 players in their national training squad and exposing them with such matches was necessary.

“ We are taking the Azlan Shah very seriously and that’s why we brought 14 gold medalists and 2 very talented young players,” said Aikman this morning.

“ We have a good relationship with Malaysia and I think the invite for the matches in July will be good for both parties.

“ We have 11 players below 20 years old and they will form the core of our team for the Sultan of Johor Cup this October.”

And at the Azlan Shah Cup, Aikman has put his faith in two 19 year olds.

Kazuki Yoneda has replaced Seren Tanaka who broke a finger over the weekend while Ryosei Kato is a talented striker.