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Crucial For Harimau Malaya To Beat Myanmar In Opener

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SINGAPORE – Harimau Malaya squad coach, Dollah Salleh wants his charges to deliver three full points in their opening group B match against Myanmar in the 2014 AFF Suzuki Cup at Jalan Besar Stadium tomorrow.

Dollah said even though Myanmar was not a seeded team, Malaysians should be wary of their coach, Radojko Avramovic in springing a surprise at the 10th Southeast Asian football tournament.

“I could see our players are serious. We had just viewed a video of matches involving Myanmar and our players have given very good feedbacks.

“We have to win tomorrow to regain our confidence. If we win tomorrow, hopefully, it would be a boost for them when facing Thailand,” he said.

Dollah was speaking to reporters after a training session at the venue here today.

The former police club coach also told his defenders to leash up several leading Myanmar strikers such Kyi Lin, Kyaw Zayar Win and Kyaw Ko Ko who could spoil things for Harimau Malaya.

Sharing these views was national squad manager Datuk Sudarsono Osman who described the opening match tomorrow as a decider of the national team’s fate in the championship.

“I pray the players will rise to the occasion. A win tomorrow will be a morale booster for them after a series of unfavourable results recently,” said Sudarsono who is also Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) vice-president.

Avramovic on the other hand, hoped his boys would put up a commendable fight against Malaysia although he knew their track record against Harimau Malaya was unfavourable to them.

The 64-year-old Serbian, fondly known as ‘Raddy’, is also scheming to match two other opponents in the group namely Singapore and Thailand even though he knew it would be an unenviable task for them.

“Malaysia has won the tournament in 2010…Singapore has won four times and Thailand also has won thrice, so we will try to reach their level even though we all know it will not be easy.

“Of course, we want to win every match in the group but looking at our opponents, it will be quite daunting but I hope my players will give their best,” Avramovic told reporters after attending a team manager meeting earlier.

Malaysia will be facing Thailand in the second match at the same venue while Singapore will square off with Myanmar at the National Stadium in Singapore Sports Hub on Wednesday. – BERNAMA

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