Korea join Malaysia in Super-Four

October 17, 2017

Title aspirants Malaysia kept their hundred per cent winning record in the 10th Men’s Asia Cup Hockey when they beat Oman 7-1 in their final Pool B match at the Maulana Bhashani National Hockey Stadium on Monday.
Defending champions South Korea joined them Super-Four from the group thrashing China 4-1 in the day’s second match under floodlights at the same venue.With the win, South Korea also exacted the revenge of their 2-5 loss to China in the Hockey World League semi-final round in England three-month ago.
Having already confirmed their Super-Four place with a win over South Korea in their last match, Malaysia looked irresistible from the very start of the match against Oman.
Though Oman produced some good hockey in their last two matches against China and South Korea, they just could not stop Malaysian goal feast.
Saari Faisal gave Malaysia a deserving lead in the 16th minute converting a penalty corner before Tajuddin Tengku doubled the margin after a pass from Faisal two minutes later.
Saabah Shahril made it 3-0 converting another penalty corner in the 20th minute while Tengku struck his second in the 23rd minute.
Al Nofali Salmeen reduced the margin for Oman converting a penalty corner in the 25th minute but Malaysia again widened the margin with a strike from Faizal three minutes from the break.
Malaysia, who are currently the second ranked team in Asia, struck two more goals in the third quarter, with Arshad Amirol and Jazlan Najmi scoring in the 40th and 42nd minutes respectively.
Meanwhile, the Pool B final match was very important for China to make it to the super-four as they came into this match with equal three points as South Korea, who, however, just needed a draw to go through with a better goal difference.
However, four-time Asia Cup champions Korea notched up an outright win over China to join India, Pakistan and Malaysia in super-four.
In super-four, after playing round-robin matches the top two teams will play the final and bottom two teams will play for third-place deciding match.
Korea took the lead in the 10th minute with Jang Jonghyun converting the penalty before Du Talake brought China back to the match in the 38th minute scoring from another penalty corner.
The defending champions pressed hard in the third and fourth quarters to hit the board thrice to dash China’s hope to qualify for the super-four.
Now, China will face hosts Bangladesh and Japan will play against Oman in 5th-8th place deciding matches.

-Input from New Age

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