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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Back to Likas

KOTA KINABALU: The Rhinos will make a return to their usual hunting ground – the Likas Stadium – in their final fixture of the first round in the Premier League challenge on Friday. ‘

They face the National Under-19 squad or better known as the Harimau Muda (Young Tigers) in a match that kicks off at 8.15pm. Confirming this yesterday, the Sabah FA Executive Secretary Harry Baking said that they have been given the green light from the Sabah Sports Board to name Likas Stadium as their venue for the rest of their campaign this season.

“We were informed that the Likas Stadium is now fit to hold matches. The faulty floodlights at the Stadium have been repaired,” said Harry yesterday. The Rhinos were forced out of the Likas Stadium since last August due to the faulty floodlights at the Stadium. They have been playing their home games at the Tawau Sports Complex since the start of the new season 2007-2008 – in December. Prior to that, the Rhinos also played their 2006-2007 Malaysia Cup quarter-final and semi-final matches at the Tawau Sports Complex. This new season, they played six matches at the Tawau Sports Complex – winning thrice (against Proton FC – 4-1, Felda United – 2-1 and Melaka – 3-0) , drawing once (with Johor – 1-1), and losing twice (Kuala Muda Naza – 0-2 and PKNS – 0-1).

“Now that we are back playing at our very own hunting den, we hope the team will be able to do well. “It has been a while since we played our matches here, and it is only good to give our loyal fans something to cheer about after being away for almost five months or so. “At the same time, I also thank the Tawau Sports Complex management as well as Safa Tawau for what they did when we hosted our matches there. They have been giving us all the necessary support.

“To the fans, we also express a big thank you for the support they have given the team, especially during the Malaysia Cup quarter-final and semi-final. “We will not forget that memorable occasion as the fans (Tawau) have been absolutely great.” The Rhinos are currently occupying fifth placing in the 13-team standings.

They have been on a three-match winning streak and a victory over Harimau Muda would surely boost their challenge for promotion. KL Plus FC currently lead the standings on 28 points, followed by Kuala Muda Naza on 27, while Johor Pasir Gudang are third – two points behind the league leaders, followed by Kelantan in fourth (22 points) and Sabah (20 points). Harimau Muda are behind Sabah on 16 points.

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