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Thursday, April 19, 2012

Get full points!

New Sabah Times

KOTA KINABALU: The Sabahawks Juniors, who had their unbeaten run shattered last week, are determined to get back to winning ways when they face KL Sime Darby in a tricky home tie at the Likas Stadium today.

 Juil Nuatim said they must forget about their first defeat (to Kedah) and look forward to their future matches, starting with their date with KL Sime Darby. “We must soldier on and fight for our place in the quarter-finals. As I have said earlier, there are no more easy matches, especially now that we are approaching the end of the group stage.

 “This tie against KL Sime Darby will be a tough one, but I believe that as long as they can play their hearts out and play as one big unit, we will get the desired result,” the Sabah team manager said. “I also hope that the players will not be affected by the news that we are now second in the standings (Group A) following the latest twist in the group where Kelantan were penalised for fielding ineligible player/s.

 “There are another seven matches left to play (including this tie against KL Sime Darby), and as long as we do our part by winning our matches, our chances of going top are still pretty much wide open. “So tomorrow, I hope the players will go all out to win the game,” he added.
The latest twist in the group saw Kedah topple Sabahawks Juniors from the top spot after the FA of Malaysia docked Kelantan points by giving all their opponents (in their last seven matches) 3-0 victories. Sabahawks Juniors, who won 2-1 over Kelantan in an away battle, were given a 3-0 victory, while Kedah, who lost 1-2, were also given a 3-0 victory, so as the other teams that have played against Kelantan.

 Meanwhile, head coach Johnny Dominicus is also eyeing victory over KL Sime Darby. “I have a simple message to the players and that is to get all the three points. They know what I expect from them, and I’m happy to note that the environment in the camp is pretty much encouraging. “Sime Darby are not easy opponents.

We only managed to settle for a one-all draw in the first round, but if the players can give their best, I’m optimistic of getting the right result,” said Johnny. For today’s clash, Johnny revealed that he will be without two players – midfielder Maxsius Musa and striker Zul Mansshah Aling. Johnny said, Maxsius is having a hamstring injury, and is expected to be out for at least a month, while Zul Mansshah will be serving his two-match automatic suspension after receiving a red card in the defeat to Kedah (last week).

 The good news is Johnny revealed that both Sabri Sahar and Leopold Alfonso Otong will be up for options.“I have yet to decide on my first team. I will do so after I discuss it with my coaching staff,” he said, referring to Burhan Ajui, Matasan Ahmad and Awal Taham.

 For the record, Sabah are currently on 42 points from 13 wins, three draws and one defeat while Kedah occupy the top spot on 43 points.

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