Sabah Football Fan blog with news, schedule, result, statistic , records and more.

Thursday, May 24, 2007


KOTA KINABALU: The Rhinos’ hopes of promotion now hangs by a thread after the shocking 1-2 defeat at lowly KL Plus FC on Tuesday. And the loss in fact may end their quest to taste Super League action next season.

Although mathematically still in the race, things are looking difficult for Drago Mamic and his boys especially with their current form. They merely managed to pick up two points from a possible nine from their last three outings.

The Police are virtually promoted and this means that there is only one berth left. Sabah and UPB-MyTEAM are fighting for this lone spot and the latter surely has the upper hand over their Borneo rival.

With four matches left, Sabah need to win all their remaining matches, Johor Pasir Gudang, Shahzan Muda, Police and Selangor PKNS. Mamic must also hope that UPB-MyTEAM will lose twice and draw once against Kuala Muda Naza, Kelantan, Johor PG and Police.

The Police are comfortable on top of the 11-team standings on 37 points, five ahead of second-placed UPB-MyTEAM (32) while Sabah is in third on 25.

On top of that, Police hold a one-match advantage over both UPB-MyTEAM and Sabah, thus making them the hot favourite to lift the Premier League crown.

Police need only a point to see Super League action while UPB-MyTEAM need four more points to kill off whatever hopes there is left for Sabah.

The way things are at the moment, it will be another year for the Rhinos in the Premier League. It is sad to say that they have themselves to blame for the entire predicament they are in now. They really had the chances to make it into the top two by now. They however failed to take those chances. They kept dropping point after precious point as the League progressed.

The Rhinos might have tried their best, but their best may not be good enough for promotion.

It was an unlucky 13 for the Rhinos, as they succumbed to their first defeat after 13 matches in the League. In fact they have not lost a match since the shock 1-0 home defeat to Armed Forces on January 5. Ever since that loss, the Rhinos won six matches, another six draws before suffering the recent defeat to KL Plus.

Unless the Rhinos gain full points against un-fancied teams like KL Plus or Shahzan Muda to name a few, they may spend life in the Premier League a little longer.

But while Sabah’s Premier League challenge is about to end, they are still in the race for a place in the quarter-finals of the Malaysia Cup. They only need a draw when they take on Police in a Group C match this coming Tuesday. They then will travel to the north by taking on Perlis in a win or bust tie in the FA Cup quarter-finals return leg. The Rhinos drew 2-2 in the first round.

In the KL Plus FC match; the Rhinos squandered a one-goal lead before bowing out to the club side. After a scoreless first half, Salvester Sindeh drew first blood for the Rhinos in the 50th minute.

However, KL Plus managed to score the equaliser 20 minutes later.

With 10 minutes remaining in regulation time, Sabah suffered a set back when its striker Prince Ativie Guy was given the marching orders for a second bookable offence. Minutes later KL Plus capitalised on this by netting the winner.

This loss may have ended Sabah’s chance to join the big boys in the Super League.

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