Malaysia's training affected by unideal pitch condition, admits Azam

Malaysia, 19032019
Zulhilmi Zainal
The Klang Valley area has seen nightly downpours in the past few days, which have affected Malaysia's training ahead of their coming matches.

BY        ZULHILMI ZAINAL       Follow on Twitter

Malaysia are scheduled to play Nepal in a friendly on June 2, and Timor Leste on June 7 and 11 in their first round World Cup/Asian Cup play-off tie, with centralised training for the matches having begun last Monday in the Klang Valley area.

But nightly downpour in the past few days have disrupted training somewhat, and on Friday the training venue had to be changed twice.

The media were initially informed on Friday morning that the training on that day would be moved from the UM Arena to the MINDEF Stadium, but a few hours later it was announced that it would be moved to the Semarak Felda Institute in Bangi.

The final change was made as the MINDEF Stadium pitch had been made soggy and uneven due to rain, just like the UM Arena pitch, while the artificial Felda pitch was relatively unaffected by the inclement weather.

But an evening thunderstorm delayed the start of their Friday training for around 45 minutes, and they were not able to end the training later than scheduled, as Super League side Felda United had arranged a test match to be played on the same pitch afterwards.

The unideal condition has been observed by Malaysia midfielder Nor Azam Azih, who admitted it when asked by the press.

"If you ask me, training has been inadequate in terms of the pitches in use. But there's nothing else we the players can do, and we need to work harder after Hari Raya (Eid).

"Furthermore, one week of training is never enough, but we'll do our best to make sure Malaysia reach the next stage [of the qualifiers]," the Pahang player remarked. 

All three encounters will be held at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium. Timor Leste are the home team of the June 11 encounter, but it will still be played in Kuala Lumpur.

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