South Africa produced a dazzling second half performance to defeat Malaysia 3-1 in the Sultan of Johor Cup International Invitational Hockey Tournament today.
The host suffered their third consecutive defeat in the tournament following loses against India (5-2) and Australia (8-0).
“We lost out on physical strength as in the matches against India and Australia, sustaining power is not at the level we desired,” said Malaysian coach Amin Rahim.
“After this tournament we will focus more on building the strength and power for several weeks,” he added.
The Malaysian Colts did enough in the first half to show South Africa that they are not to be intimidated with reputation of their opponent in the Sultan of Johor Cup at the Taman Daya Hockey Stadium tonight.
Riding on the back of their famous 5-4 victory against two-time champions India two days ago, the South Africans made a fantastic start with their first penalty corner in the 23rd minute.
Niel Raath’s drive from the top of the circle was cleared by goalkeeper Mohamad Rafaizul but the ball fell near Davis who tapped it into goal.
Undeterred by the setback, the Malaysians went on a quick counter instantly and earned a penalty corner. Muhammad Mamat converted to level 1-1.
But the South Africans dominated the second half with constantly poaching into Malaysian defense. Simons Mervin unleased a powerful shot past Rafaizul in the 35th minute to put his side 2-1 on top.
Team captain Senzwesihle Ngubane followed up with a dazzling stroke of the moment performance, showcasing his skills and speed in the 53rd minute. Senzwesihle weaved his way past three defenders and relayed the ball to Cameron Forestier to score.
Forestier made no mistake to score his third goal in the tournament for 3-1 lead. It was a goal that brought the host down, snuffing out the fire.
(Press Release: Sultan of Johor Cup Media Team)