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Southeast Asian Games

Adam urges U22 team to bounce back after SEA Games disappointment

11:09 GMT+3 05/12/2019
Adam Nor Azlin, Cambodia v Malaysia, SEA Games 2019, 4 Dec 2019
The captain was adamant that while this failure at the 2019 Southeast Asian Games is a black mark, it won't be a permanent failure for Malaysia.

In barely a month, it has been a whirlwind of emotions for Adam Nor Azlin when it comes to the national team. From the euphoria of back-to-back wins against Thailand and Indonesia with the senior side for the World Cup qualifying campaign to being dumped out of the 2019 SEA Games in what is considered a relatively easier group.

The defensive stalwart was the captain of the Malaysia Under-22 side that only managed to beat Timor Leste from the four Group A matches that they played in Philippines, leading to an early exit from the competition. Adam was clear that the team did not perform to what was expected from them but stressed that Malaysia will bounce back from this.

"We have tried our best but maybe it wasn't our tournament. We are very disappointed. This is a lesson for us players so that there won't be a repeat of the same in future tournaments. I failed as a captain in not being able to lead the team into the semi-final. 

"But this is not a permanent failure. Yes, we can be disappointed. But if we allow that feeling to fester, we will be down forever. The players need to do our homework so that we can be more prepared and more competitive. I'm confident that every player is professional and wants to do better next time," said Adam after the match.

Adam and Irfan Zakaria were the two overage players in the squad but only just as they are only one year outside of the tournament requirement. So while comparatively more experienced than most in the squad and with more Super Leaue experience under their collective belts, the difference to the others isn't vast.

For a back four including Dominic Tan and Haziq Nadzli that did so well in the 2018 AFC U23 Championship and the 2018 Asian Games against far better opponents, their performances in this competition were slightly underwhelming with Haziq in particular dropping a couple of clangers. 


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