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Malaysia hope to make Junior Hockey WC opportunity count

Lucknow [Uttar Pradesh]: The Malaysian junior men’s team have arrived at the Chaudhary Charan Singh Airport hoping to make the most of the opportunity to participate at the Junior Hockey World Cup 2016 beginning on December 8 here at Major Dhyan Chand Stadium.

On their arrival, Malaysian team head coach Wallace Tan highlighted that his team were excited on hearing about their inclusion in the Junior World Cup.

“We have just played a U-21 tournament in November and the team has been practicing together for a while. But when we were told by the FIH that we would be participating in the World Cup, the team was obviously excited and this is a huge opportunity for them. Some of them are also part of the development program and this experience will help them improve in a great way,” stated Tan.

Malaysian team’s recent performance at the 2016 Sultan of Johor Cup was encouraging and they will be aiming at improving their record in the Junior World Cup, where they have finished fourth on four occasions.

Speaking about Pool B where they are grouped with The Netherlands, Belgium and Egypt, the coach admitted that it will be a tough challenge for them.

“We are in a difficult group as all teams are tough but we are prepared for the challenge,” he said.

Earlier, International Hockey Federation invited Malaysia to replace Pakistan after FIH had to officially withdraw the latter team as it had applied for visas for players past the official deadline.

Malaysia will play their first match against the Dutch on December 9.(ANI)