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Thursday, January 15, 2009

Rozlee: One objective, one challenge

KOTA KINABALU: The State Reserve League squad finally kick start their President’s Cup 2009 challenge with an away game against Johor FC.

They will take on the Southern club side at the Jcorp Stadium in Pasir Gudang tonight.

The squad, under the watchful eyes of coach Rozlee Bin Idris assisted by Janus Bin Tioon were initially supposed to kick start their season last week against Shahzan Muda of Pahang.

But the game was put off after Shahzan Muda appealed for a postponement, that was eventually granted by the FA of Malaysia. Shahzan Muda cited their failure to get air tickets as grounds of their appeal.

For this new season, Rozlee, who was promoted from the Under-19 squad, has set his sights on winning the championship, as he attempts to repeat Awang Sabtu Jamil’s feat of guiding his squad to lift the crown for the first time since they won it about ten years ago.

However the tournament was an Under-21 showcase, and then was reverted to Under-23 and for this season an Under-20 tournament.

“We believe that with quality in the team, it is possible for us to realise our target. I will be pressing the players to focus on our objective,” Rozlee said in an interview with the New Sabah Times Sports recently.

“The majority of our players are from our youth squad 2008 (Under-19) and basically they have been together for quite a while. So I think are they are now well prepared to mount the challenges ahead,” he added.

At the same time, Rozlee also said that he will be focusing on team work rather than individuals in realising their dream.

“What I want to create for the team is to be like a one big and strong family without self interest. I don’t want to have stars in the team, everyone will have equal status and every one will work towards the same objective.

“We have several new faces, and a back up squad and they have adapted nicely into the squad.

“Basically the rest of the teams are also using their Under-19 players from last season, so we more or less know their strengths,” he said.

Sabah have been drawn in Group B alongside PKNS FC, Proton FC, Kuala Lumpur, Felda United, Shahzan Muda, Johor FC, UPB-MyTEAM, Kedah, Kelantan, Terengganu, MBJB FC Johor, Melaka and SDM Kepala Batas Penang.

The team left for Johor yesterday with a strong-18 member squad comprising Jaidi Umbong, Shafie Jaim, Faddley Lunsing, Fandi Linik, Nelbandly @ Mohd Nor, Ibrahim Abu Nawas, Calaste Aping, Delson John, Mc Barry Jaz Matin, Gergesle Jumat, Zenelter Dangku, Tarajan Amil, Mohammad Hanafie Unus, Mohd Ahzuan Khan, Mohd Siraj Munir Juri, Mohammad RD Osman, Ovinnis Ozawa Joachim and Muis Mursalam.

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