KUALA LUMPUR: The battle for the crown of the 2024 Malaysia Hockey League (Women) is intensifying as the curtain draws close this Thursday, with the Malaysian University team successfully claiming the top spot after edging Liaoning Women’s Hockey Team from China 1-0 today.

This victory saw Malaysian University leading the league with 20 points while maintaining an unbeaten record after eight matches, while Liaoning Women’s Hockey Team dropped to second place with 18 points.

Forward Nur Zafirah Aziz emerged as the hero for coach Lailin Abu Hassan’s team when her early goal in the second minute was enough to secure three valuable points for them in the match held at Pitch 1 of the National Hockey Stadium Bukit Jalil here.

The effectiveness of the Malaysian University defence, including thwarting a series of penalty corner shots by the opponents coached by Ren Ye, also proved to be the main key to their victory today.

Speaking after the match, Lailin praised his team’s high commitment level, expressing his desire for victory to brighten their chances of winning the league this season.

“Despite being under attack at times, the players managed the defence well. I hope today’s victory will ignite the team’s spirit to defeat CS Mustang HT this Thursday and clinch the league title,“ he told Bernama.

In another match at Pitch 2 of the National Hockey Stadium Bukit Jalil, Nur Amirah Jasmi Apindi’s hat-trick in the 17th, 29th, and 50th minutes, along with a goal from Nuratyra Sajali in the 34th minute, helped CS Mustang HT sink MSP-PHP-SSNP 4-0.

CS Mustang HT are currently in sixth place with 9 points, while MSP-PHP-SSNP in ninth place with 3 points. - Bernama

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