Hosts Malaysia got off to a resounding start when they defeated Singapore 11-0 in a World Hockey League match at the Kuantan Hockey Stadium.
It was an effortless win by the Malaysians who ran rings around a relatively young Singapore side that had eight players from the Junior Asia Cup squad promoted to senior ranks.
Singapore even fielded 14-year-old Neo Yu Shan in the starting eleven and she gave a good account of herself and this can only augur well for the islanders in the future.
Still it was obvious that Malaysia were going to win the match right from the first whistle and they did not stretch themselves, with a key match against Kazakhstan probably at the back of their minds.
Malaysia made good off the penalty corners awarded to them, scoring 8 goals from the 17 that they awarded.
“I could not have asked for a better start and the performance was outstanding. Our penalty corners worked and that attributed to half our tally today,” said Malaysian coach Mohd Nasihin Nubli Ibrahim.
“Now we have to prepare for Kazakhstan and from what I saw of them today, they are a strong physical side that play robust hockey, using their physical strength to the maximum.
“We need to be patient and make use of the chances that come our way as I expect them to try catch us on the counter where they can prove to be devastating.”
Malaysia opened scoring in the 5th minute through Siti Rahmah Othman who slotted home after the ball deflected of a defenders stick and left her with the easiest task of slotting it past Singapore custodian Cookie Tan Koon Khim.
That boosted the confidence of the Malaysian girls who added a second through another penalty corner goal, this time A. Kannagi netting home at close range after the initial attempt by Siti Rahmah was well saved by Cookie who was hapless to prevent the goal in the 14th minute.
It was all Malaysia after that as they pinned the Singaporean defence into their own half and scored at regular intervals with Nor Hidayah Ahmad Bokhari scoring a brace in the 15th and 35th minutes with Siti Rahmah finding the back of the net in the 24th minute for a halftime score of 5-0.
Though Singapore offered initial resistance in the second half, they crumbled under the Malaysian onslaught as goals by Fazilla Slyvester Silin (47th and 67th minutes), Kannagi (53rd minute), Siti Rahmah (58th minute), Siti Noor Amarina Ruhaini (61st minute) and Juliani Mohammad Din (69th minute) for the resounding win.