Mohamed Madzli Ikmar looking fruitful outcomes from the FIH Champions Challenge I

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Mohamed Madzli Ikmar looking fruitful outcomes from the FIH Champions Challenge I

Mohamed Madzli Ikmar, the co-skipper and star player of the Malaysian men’s hockey team, is quite confident about earning fruitful outcomes in the FIH Champions Challenge I, set to be started on Saturday, November 26, in Johannesburg, South Africa.

In the event-opening game, Malaysia will take on Canada at the Randburg Hockey Stadium to evaluate their level of preparedness ahead of the Olympic Qualifying round.

The Malaysian Hockey Federation (MHF) gave the team a target to achieve a place among the top five teams. However, the national line-up has higher aims.

Explaining the strategy, Madzli stated that they will formulate strategies according to every game.

He observed, “We have a strong team and we need to prove that we are capable of making the cut to London. Of course this tournament has no bearing on the London qualifiers but it will help build the players’ confidence”.

He remarked that they will try to overcome high-ranked teams in order to finish the tournament with a positive note.

George Koshy, the National Team Manager, expressed hopes for victories in the upcoming tough games.

In his view, all players of the team are raring to face the challenges that will help them in achieving their aims.

He underlined, “Our games against Canada has always been close. We expect this round to be no different. We will tread cautiously in our opening game as we start with the ultimate objective of going a win”.

In total, eight squads will be featuring in the FIH Champions Challenge I, Japan, Poland, Belgium, South Africa, Malaysia, Canada, Argentina and India.

Argentina is currently holding eighth position according to the world rankings and top seeded squad in the eight-nation tournament. On the other end, Poland is the lowest-ranked team in the event, with holding 19th place in the world rankings.

It is worth highlighting here that Malaysia will play the Champions Challenge for the third time, as earlier on it contested the events in 2001 and 2003.  

The outcomes of the Champions Challenge will be a good assessment for the Malaysian team whether it can go for the 2012 London Olympics or not. In order to go confidently for the Olympic Qualifiers, Malaysia will have to deliver results in the tournament.

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