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Monday, February 20, 2012

Away boost… Sabri back to bolster midfield in President’s Cup

New Sabah Times


KOTA KINABALU: Sabah midfield will be boosted by the return of Sabri Sahar from injury when they take on KL Sime Darby in a President’s Cup challenge at the MP Selayang Stadium today.
He has been declared fit for the Group A tie after limping off just 15 minutes in the one-all draw against Bukit Jalil Sports School last Monday.

Team manager Juil Nuatim when contacted yesterday, said that Sabri was part of the travelling squad to the national capital, and that he is likely to make it straight back into the first team.
“It’s good to have him back in the team. He is one of the most experienced players in the squad. We are happy to see him around,” Juil said.

Sabah will go into the match riding high having maintained their unbeaten record since the start of the league by recording three wins and a draw in their previous matches.
This will be third away tie of the season.

In the last two, they thrashed Melaka 4-1 before being held to a one-all draw by Bukit Jalil Sports School and no thanks to a penalty miss by Zackkalani Antanom.
If not, it could have changed the outcome of the tie.

But Juil rather not want to look back, instead, he wants his charges to fully focus on what is ahead of them, starting with today’s tie that is set to kick off at 4.45pm.
“As usual, the target is to try to get the three points, but I will still be happy to settle for a draw since this is an away tie,” said Juil.

“The season has been tough, but I’m glad the players have been coping quite well with it. So I’m urging them to continue with their hard work and play as a team in this tie against Sime Darby.
“If they can show the kind of spirit and determination like in our previous matches, I’m confident we will get something out of this clash,” Juil said.
Meanwhile, head coach Johnny Dominicus echoed his manager’s determination to win.

“We will go for the win…as always,” said Johnny while stressing that he is likely to stick to his winning strategy.
“There is not much changes to our strategy. We will be playing our usual 4-4-2 formation with just minor changes to the line-up,” he said.

Johnny also revealed that he will be without striker Eyo Matthew after withdrawing from the squad due to demise in his family.

Johnny said they would not bring any replacement as flight bookings have been made one-week earlier.
“I’ll be having discussion with the coaching staff, and would talk to our manager on our plan tomorrow (today). Eyo’s case apart, I think we are pretty much ready for the match,” Johnny said.
For the record, last season both Sabah and KL Sime Darby were also in the same group, and have one win each from their meeting (last season), with Sabah winning 3-0 at home and Sime Darby registering 1-0 win on their home turf.

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