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Nicholas Swirad

PKNS move helps Swirad get noticed for national team

19:54 GMT+3 12/03/2019
Nicholas Swirad, PKNS v Felda, Super League, 9 Mar 2019
Following his solid defensive performance for PKNS this season, Nicholas Swirad has earned himself his first ever Malaysia call-up.

BY        ZULHILMI ZAINAL       Follow on Twitter

Speaking to the press on the first day of centralised training ahead of the Airmarine Cup, defender Nicholas Swirad admitted that his decision to move to PKNS FC from Melaka United may have helped him earn a Malaysia call-up.

The Manchester-born defender joined the Selangor-based team before this season began, and has helped the Red Ants reach fourth place currently in the Super League standings, having conceded only two goals in six games, as the joint-best team defensively. He has played every minute of the six encounters, and even found the back of the net twice.

His performance this season has earned him his first ever call-up to the Malaysia national team, ahead of the Airmarine Cup, which will be contested by the Harimau Malaya, Oman, Afghanistan and Singapore, at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium between 20th and 23rd March.

"I definitely think so; playing in KL (Klang Valley) every week makes it easier for people to come watch. Melaka are obviously a good club as well, but it seemed like the right time to come work under Rajagobal (PKNS head coach Datuk Rajagobal Krishnasamy), and it has clearly paid dividends.

"It's amazing and a very humbling experience. I'm very grateful to be given the opportunity. I feel over the moon, I hope to contribute to the team in any way I can," responded the 27-year old when asked by Goal on Tuesday.

But when asked by the press about his target in the training camp, the former JDT II man said that he aims to only do his job, without being too ambitious.

"I don't think it's for me to say. My job is to get my head down, work hard and try to have a positive effect on the team. They did very well in November (AFF Championship), and it'll be difficult for me to top that, to be honest with you. I'm just going to work hard and enjoy it," he stated.

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