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Exclusive: Ong reveals Malaysia’s hopes for SEA Games

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Although a eventuality correct doesn’t get underway until a finish of subsequent week, a 29th Southeast Asian Games flog off on Monday when a football foe starts in Malaysia.



Football has been a tack during a Games given approach behind in 1959, yet in a complicated guise of a contest that started in a late 1970s, usually 3 nations have won a Gold Medal – Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia.

That contingent will again be among a favourites, nonetheless a rising force that is Vietnam might good have a contend in things. But there’s no doubt that republic is underneath a many pressure, and that’s a hosts.

Fox Sports Asia held adult with Malaysia’s coach, Datuk Ong Kim Swee, on a eve of a contest to plead a team’s preparations and their expectations for one of Southeast Asia’s many critical football tournaments.

Fox Sports Asia: Datuk, appreciate we for vocalization with Fox Sports Asia. We’re now hardly a integrate of days from a SEA Games kicking off. Can we start by giving us a clarity of usually how critical this eventuality is?

Datuk Ong Kim Swee: The Southeast Asian Games are not usually about football yet when it comes to hosting these Games, football is a categorical priority. Whoever hosts a SEA Games, a series one priority is doing good in football and that’s huge. To win a bullion award in football means that we win altogether a SEA Games itself. For me we also have a supervision concerned in a foe and there’s honour during interest generally with Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam and Thailand. Football is a series one foe in all these countries so whenever it comes to a SEA Games, football is a categorical captivate and everybody wants us to win a Gold Medal. This is my fourth SEA Games, going behind to 2011, and each time we attend in a SEA Games my aim is simply to win a Gold Medal.

FSA: There have usually been a tiny series of nations that have won a competition. Do we see a opening squeezing a small between those other nations who are also anticipating to win this time around?

OKS: It is, a opening is removing closer. It’s not like 2009 or 2011 when we could kick Laos, Brunei, Timor-Leste or Cambodia simply and that opening is removing narrower. You demeanour during a republic like Brunei that usually mislaid 2-0 to Australia in a new AFC U23 subordinate and we can see from those formula that it’s not an easy charge any more.

FSA: Touching on Australia, they’re a member of a ASEAN territory in terms of a AFC; do we consider there is an evidence that they should also be concerned in a SEA Games as well?

OKS: That would be engaging – this contest is an U23 contest like a Olympics yet there we have 3 overage players allowed. For this tournament, that’s not authorised so it’s usually players that are underneath 22. But we trust that if Australia were authorised to attend it would make it some-more interesting.

FSA: You’re in Group A, a territory with 5 nations compared to a 6 in Group B. Even as we contend that a opening is closing, a fact stays that Malaysia are approaching to be too clever for Laos and Brunei that leaves we fighting for one of a dual semi-final spots with Singapore and Myanmar, right?

OKS: we consider we can contend that approbation yet we can’t take Brunei lightly, we can’t take Laos lightly. Based on what I’ve seen of them in their new matches tactically, they are not a bad team. So on paper, yes, it should be Malaysia, Singapore and Myanmar yet we can’t bonus a others.

FSA: How has a credentials being going, there are a few damage doubts yet other than that, are we gratified with how things have been so far?

OKS: Before we went to Bangkok for a AFC U22 qualifiers, we usually had about 5 days and now we have had 10 days so we can’t ask for more. My usually regard is that we have injuries with a dual categorical strikers – S. Kumaahran and N. Thanbalan – so we wish they will be entirely recovered before we announce a organisation on Saturday.

FSA: Are there any immature stars from your patrol that we should keep a sold eye on during a tournament?

OKS: Muhammad Akhyar is an aggressive actor who is usually 19-years-old and we trust that one day this child can go really far. He’s not fearful to take on any defence, even yet he’s not physically as clever as others. But he’s really nifty and if he’s given an event in these SEA Games he will arise to a occasion.

FSA: Looking during a other group, it seems a harder one with Thailand and Vietnam, and Indonesia, and afterwards other nations on a arise such as Timor and a Philippines. Who do we see as a nations
to demeanour out for, from that side of a tournament?

OKS: I have no doubt that Thailand will go by and afterwards that means that a competition for a other mark will be between Indonesia and Vietnam. Cambodia can spoil a swell of other nations and they have a really offset patrol with 7 or 8 players that were concerned in a AFC Suzuki Cup final deteriorate yet we can’t
compare them to Indonesia, Vietnam or Thailand. We are a horde nation yet and we trust that whoever is on a other side of a pull will try to equivocate a horde country. Of march we don’t wish to accommodate adult with Thailand in a semi-finals since we know they are a favourites. But for me, in a semi-finals, anything can occur and personification during home if we validate is really important.

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