04 October 2016

DPMM FC players join training

THE national football team’s preparations for next week’s AFF (ASEAN Football Federation) Suzuki Cup 2016 qualifiers in Cambodia are now in full swing after the inclusion of DPMM FC players.
The Wasps — who have been training since June — now have a 25-man squad after 10 players from DPMM FC joined training on Monday at the NFABD (National Football Association of Brunei Darussalam) Field in Berakas.
DPMM FC captain Rosmin Hj Md Kamis and fellow DPMM FC midfielders Azwan Salleh, Maududi Hilmi Kasmi and Najib Hj Tarif have joined forwards Shahrazen Said and Adi Said in training with the national team. Also in the side is goalkeeper Wardun Yussof as well as defenders Reduan Hj Petara, Ak Yura Indera Putera Pg Yunos and Ak Fakharazzi Pg Hj Hassan.
The players joined the team after their 1-0 win against Tampines Rovers in the Singapore League on Saturday. DPMM FC play their final game of the season on Oct 26 against Balestier Khalsa.
Faiq Jefri Bolkiah, who is plying his trade with English Premier League champions Leicester City, is the only national player yet to link up with the team.
National football team manager Hj Mohd Noor Hj Hamid is looking forward to the boost provided by the DPMM FC players.
“Our national team’s preparation for the qualifiers is on track now that all the players are in training,” said Hj Mohd Noor in an interview with The Brunei Times yesterday.
“I hope we can perform well with this squad since they are experienced players and will be able to share their knowledge with the others,” he added.
Only the winner of the four-country qualifiers to be held from Oct 15-21 will progress to the tournament proper in the Philippines.
The sultanate will kick things off against Timor Leste next Saturday before facing Cambodia three days later. They will then complete the qualifiers against Laos on Oct 21.
The qualifier will advance into Group B where they will play Malaysia, Myanmar and Vietnam. Group A comprises of hosts the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Indonesia.
Headed by interim national coach Mike Wong Mun Heng, who is also NFABD’s technical director, the Wasps will set out on a training tour to Kuala Lumpur today for friendly matches against Harimau Muda (the Malaysia Under-22 football team).
Hj Mohd Noor said they are hoping for good performances rather than results during the tune-up games.
“We will be looking for good performance and teamwork rather than results,” said Hj Mohd Noor.
“The coach has been working more on the players’ movement, how well they gel with each other and also the finishing for the strikers.
“It will be a trial for the players in the team and to give them a confidence boost because our opponents in the qualifiers are very tough,” he added.
“With only one slot up for grabs, we have to work very hard in order to qualify for the final round in the Philippines,” concluded the NFABD executive committee member.
Brunei, who were headed by DPMM FC coach Steve Kean, ended the 2014 qualifiers winless.
The Wasps started with a 4-2 loss to Timor Leste before slipping to Laos by the same scoreline in the second game.
They were out of contention following a 3-1 loss to Myanmar and ended their campaign with a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Cambodia.
Brunei’s sole appearance in the main event remains in 1996 when they competed in the inaugural edition.

The Brunei Times

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