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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Slight advantage

New Sabah Times

KOTA KINABALU: Sabahawks Juniors held Terengganu to a stalemate in the first leg of the President’s Cup quarter-finals played at the Sultan Ismail Nasaruddin Shah in Kuala Terengganu yesterday. The result has given Sabahawks Juniors a slight advantage when they meet again in the return leg at the Likas Stadium on June 4. 

Juil Nuatim said he was satisfied with the outcome of the game as well as the efforts and commitment of his players. “There are another 90 minutes to go, and we can say that there is still a 50-50 chance for both teams. But since the return match will be played at the Likas Stadium, I think it will give us the upperhand,” the Sabah team manager said.

 “With this result, I’m quite optimistic of advancing into the next round. Furthermore, our home record this season has been pretty impressive. We won all our matches, except for one game, which ended in a draw. Hopefully, we can finish the job in front of our own fans,” he added.

 According to Juil, it was a game of two halves and an exciting one too, with the visiting Sabahawks Juniors denied thrice by the goalpost. “They (Terengganu) dominated the first half, but we managed to come back strongly in the second half, and were pretty much in control of the game.
“With a little bit of luck I think we could have won the tie … but today (yesterday) it seemed that lady luck was not on our side. “We created numerous chances at their goalmouth, but unfortunately none of them found the net. Striker Zul Mansshah Aling twice saw his efforts hit the goalpost, while Jetko Romedius also squandered their best chance as his left footed attempt failed to find an empty net, but instead hit the goalpost.

 “It was one of those days where things didn’t go our way. On any other day, any one of those attempts could have found the back of the net,” said Juil. Although this is a positive outcome, Juil reminded his charges to remain focused for the return leg tie.

 “I hope the team will continue with their training in preparing for the return leg. This is a festive season, and we are still undecided whether to give the players a break. But if there is a break, it will only be for a day or two,” said Juil.

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