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Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Sabahawks crash out

New Sabah Times
ON THE RUN … Zainizam Marjan (blue/red) outruns two Selangor players during their FA Cup second round tie at the Likas Stadium yesterday.
KOTA KINABALU: Sabah were deservedly shown the exit door in the FA Cup competition after succumbing to a 3-0 defeat to Selangor in the second round at the Likas Stadium yesterday. It was a shameful show from the hosts, and they were made to look like schoolboys by the visitors, who were clearly the better side throughout.

 The scoreline could have been more, if not for some missed chances by the visitors. The opening half an hour was a dull affair with not many chances, as both sides seemed to play cautiously. Sabah head coach David McCreery when met after the match said he wants his charges to re-group and take the defeat as a lesson. “The silly goal we conceded (first) turned the game against us,” McCreery said.

 “But I hope the players will learn from this, and that we cannot make mistakes against a Super League side like Selangor. “It is my job to put up the players together, and I hope they will work harder from now,” he added. Selangor were the first to test Sabah’s goalmouth through Muhd Ramzul Zahini Adenan, whose header from inside the box off a cross from Veenod a/L Subramaniam was palmed away for a corner by custodian Shahril Sa’ari, before Sabah’s Mohd Farid Saibun unleashed a shot from the edge of the box that went wide followed by an attempt from Juffrey Omopor whose grounder was cleared by the keeper Norazlan Razali.

 The match only become lively as it headed for the half-time break with Selangor on the attack where they were close twice to breaking the deadlock. Their first attempt hit the crossbar before Sabah’s Shahril was forced to clear the ball off his line. They finally took the lead through Francis Forkey Doe’s back-heel opener one minute before half time.

 After the break, Sabah brought in the veteran Zainizam Marjan for the ineffective Mohd Farid Saibun, but the former international striker could not do much in turning the game around, as Selangor continued their domination. It took Selangor six minutes upon the restart of the second half to extend their lead.

This time Doe was the provider, putting Mohd Raimi Md Nor through, who coolly slotted home past the hapless Sabah custodian. In the 53rd minute, Zainizam came close to reducing the deficit for his side only to find his shot blocked by the keeper. Selangor were close to making it 3-0 in the 69th minute, but his time, Sabah were fortunate as Sumardi Hajalan was there to clear the ball off the line from a powerful header by Ramiez Jamal Dayoub.

 Soon after, Zainizam was again denied from putting his name on the scoresheet when his attempt was cleared off the line by Abdul Shukur Jusoh. With three minutes remaining on the clock, Doe sealed their convincing win with an easy tap-in goal after receiving a cross from Raimi. Juffrey squandered the opportunity to score the consolation for Sabah in injury time as his attempt went wide despite only having the keeper to beat, to eventually end Sabah’s lame show on home turf.

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