RAZIE IN A DILEMMA
Has lost his penalty corner touch after being out of the game for nine months
TWELVE penalty corners were won against Fiji on Tuesday, and Razie Rahim was given eight chances but only scored one. That too was from a low flick to the board. It was his third goal of the tournament, and all three have been from low flicks to the board.
Razie’s high drag flicks have been woefully off target in the ongoing World League Round Two in Dhaka and the national team’s one-time top penalty corner flicker is desperate to regain his touch.
His loss of form coincides with the nine months he spent undergoing Police Inspector and now, after graduating, Razie is finding it hard to find his target.
It was the same story when he played for Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC) in the recent Malaysia Hockey League (MHL).
“As you know, I underwent nine months of Police training and somehow lost my scoring touch after that. I have been dragging the ball too much towards the right side and have been totally missing the target.
“However, I’m grateful that the coach has been giving me the bulk of the penalty corners in Dhaka to improve myself,” said Razie, who only scored four goals in the MHL for KLHC this season.
“I hope the coach gives me more chances in the quarter-final against Sri Lanka for me to get it right. I need all the chances I can get to get back to my old self,” said Razie, who scored eight goals in the Singapore World League Round Two in 2015.
The lanky player is also a solid defender, and if he gets it right in the knock-out stages, it will be a breeze for Malaysia to claim the gold medal in Dhaka.
“We have been keeping close tabs and also motivating Razie to get back his form. That’s why I have been giving him the lion’s share of penalty corners here even though I have three other options in Fitri (Shaari), Najmi (Jazlan) and Shahril (Saabah).
“We need him to get back to his best not only for this tournament, but the World League Semi-finals as well,” said Malaysian coach Stephen van Huizen.
Van Huizen and his men watched China play Sri Lanka in the last Group B match yesterday.
“On paper we should beat Sri Lanka in the quarter-finals, but we know that we can’t take them lightly. We have our options, like Fitri who scored a penalty corner goal against Fiji, to be rotated in the knock-out stages and help us get into the final,” said van Huizen.