KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 9 (Bernama) -- The national hockey squad once again had to eat humble pie after losing to the world’s number three team, Netherlands at its fourth test action in the European Tour Series last night.
The team under national chief coach Roelant Oltmans lost 2-6 to Netherlands, which was its second loss after the first action on Tuesday, which saw the national squad losing 4-6.
At the action in Breda, Netherlands, Malaysia was ahead as early as the fifth minute via a field goal by national young striker, Mohamad Akhimullah Anuar Esook before Bjorn Kellerman put the host team in front with two goals in the eighth and the 19th minutes.
Netherlands, subsequently, slotted in its third goal seconds before the first half ended via a Jeroen Hertzberger’s field goal.
In the second half, Netherlands scored its fourth goal, a field goal, through Billy Bakker in the 33rd minute and four minutes later, it was Jelle Galema’s turn to widen the scoring gap.
Malaysia tried to recover at the 52nd minute when Mohamad Akhimullah once again scored but Bjorn Kellerman denied the effort of the national squad to close the gap by scoring a hat trick two minutes before the match ended.
Oltmans, in a media statement by the Malaysian Hockey Confederation, (MHC) said the national squad was punished by the opposition after its failure to translate 15 attempts in the first half (into goals).
‘’We played well in the first half but we did not use the 15 attempts well but our opponents were able to capitalise on their chances. Indeed, Nertherlands is a team which will punish its opponent over every mistake it makes.
‘’But what is important for us is to learn from the mistakes and weaknesses at this match and show an improvement at our last two matches in the tour series against Belgium,’’ he said.
Malaysia still had two more test actions against the second ranking team in the world, Belgium (at 12 midnight tonight) and on Monday, against the same team.