Football Association of Malaysia (FAM), today confirm that the Pestabola Merdeka 2023 Final between Malaysia vs Tajikistan will still take place at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium, Kuala Lumpur on this Tuesday, 17 October 2023 at 9.00pm.
This decision was made through a meeting held immediately after inspecting the latest condition of the field at the stadium, this afternoon which after research and evaluation from a technical aspect, it can be used for the final action, this Tuesday.
In addition, the decision also took into account several other factors and considerations including from the logistics aspect involving the secretariat, officers and teams involved, in addition to the fact that there is no other venue in the Klang Valley that can accommodate the expected attendance of Harimau Malaya supporters.
Although the condition of the new pitch at the National Stadium was not very satisfactory during the first match of Pestabola Merdeka 2023, Malaysia vs. India last Friday, 13 October 2023, FAM is confident and believes that the Stadium Corporation of Malaysia (PSM) and its technical consultants and contractors are capable of repairing the condition of the grass. by this Tuesday.
FAM President, Datuk Haji Hamidin Haji Mohd Amin together with PSM Chairman, Dato’ Hans Isaac were also joined by PSM Board Member, Datuk Seri Windsor John; LOC Pestabola Merdeka 2023 chairman who is also FAM Vice President, Mohd Firdaus Mohamed and national head coach, Kim Pan Gon at noon today conducted an inspection to see for themselves the latest state of the National Stadium field.
After the inspection, the meeting attended by the parties involved has agreed that the Pestabola Merdeka 2023 Final action, this Tuesday, will still be played at the National Stadium based on the positive development that can be seen in the renovation work on the field.
Even Pan Gon himself from a technical point of view saw that the pitch was playable and felt it would be better for the final action to remain at the National Stadium so as not to interfere with his team’s focus and preparation.
FAM is very grateful to the Minister of Youth and Sports, YB Hannah Yeoh and PSM who have worked hard and made every effort to make the new grass conversion project at the National Stadium a success and ensure that it can be used at the 2023 Merdeka Festival.
Thank you also to DYAM Major General Tunku Ismail Ibni Sultan Ibrahim, Tunku Crown Prince of Johor for his willingness to sponsor the installation of this new type of Zeon Zoysia grass.
Perhaps due to some unavoidable factors, especially in terms of time, the condition of this new field is not quite as perfect as everyone expected to be used in the 2023 Independence Festival, but it is still better than the cow grass that was used before.
Taking into account that this National Stadium is the ‘Home of Harimau Malaya’ and the number of tickets sold for the final action has exceeded 10,000 spectators so far, there is no other venue around the Klang Valley capable of accommodating that capacity except the National Stadium.
In fact, if the final action is moved to the Sultan Ibrahim Stadium in Johor or the Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin Stadium in Terengganu, it will cause more problems and difficulties for the loyal supporters of Harimau Malaya who have already bought the tickets because the majority of them are in the Klang Valley.
Therefore, by taking the decision to remain playing at the National Stadium, FAM will continue to work closely with PSM throughout the several days leading up to this Tuesday to ensure that the level or condition of the National Stadium field can minimize damage to ensure that the final action can run smoothly.
Of course, the condition of the field will be the main focus of FAM and PSM at this time.