SINGAPORE – Japan’s national hockey coach, Kang Keon Wook has described Malaysia as “one strong team” and they will be more cautious with Tai Beng Hai’s team’s attacks.
Japan are up against Malaysia in the semi-final of the World Hockey League (WHL) Round Two 2015 tomorrow after beating Ukraine 5-0 in the quarter-final at the Sengang Hockey Stadium, yesterday while Malaysia beat Mexico 10-1 at the same venue.
Kang said he worried that his team might not be able to counter the attacks from Malaysia, as for him, Malaysia’s strength was attacking, goalscoring and converting penalty corner.
“Our preparations for the semi-final…Malaysia is a one of the strongest teams in this tournament. We have to be well prepared if we want to be in the final.
“But winning or losing is not important…the most important thing is how we play our game,” he told reporters here today.
Kang said even though Japan had players with a better field goal skills, they cannot beat the speed shown by most of the Malaysian players.
He added that the Malaysia were a very well organised team and as such will use a more attacking strategy than just defense.
Meanwhile, Beng Hai said even though Japan’s ranking dropped to No.15 from No.14, they still were a tough opponent.
Beng Hai said he wants his boys to be aware of the threat Japan can pose as they (Japan) were a very organised team in terms of physical and mental preparedness.
Team captain, Muhammad Razie Abdul Rahim said he believed that if Malaysia did not make any mistakes, they will beat Japan easily. – BERNAMA