Malaysia women's hockey team beat Thailand 3-1 for fifth consecutive gold

Malaysia's field hockey team huddle before the women's gold medal match against Thailand at the 28th Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games) in Singapore on June 12, 2015. -- PHOTO: AFP  
Malaysia's field hockey team huddle before the women's gold medal match against Thailand at the 28th Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games) in Singapore on June 12, 2015. -- PHOTO: AFP  

The Malaysian women's hockey team underlined their prowess in South-east Asia when they overcame a spirited Thailand team 3-1 victory to win their fifth straight SEA Games gold medal on Friday evening.

Malaysia have won the competition every time the sport has been offered at the biennial meet in the past 18 years - 1997, 1999, 2001, 2007 and 2013.

Malaysia's star striker Fazilla Sylvester S. broke the deadlock to score in the 37th minute before Siti Shahida and Nurul Nabihah added another two in the 45th and 49th minutes at Sengkang Hockey Stadium.

Thailand, who trained for two months in South Korea before the SEA Games, refused to give up and they pulled a goal back from a penalty corner in the 51st minute to reduce the deficit.

Malaysia's coach, Ibrahim Nasihin Nubli said: "We knew it would be a tight game against the Thailand team, they came into the tournament fully prepared from Korea and are very fit.

"But the hardest part was the first goal and winning this SEA Games will keep the women prepared for the international tournaments ahead. We have now showed that we are a level ahead of other teams in the South-east Asian region."

Malaysia will meet Singapore in the men's final on Saturday evening in Sengkang.

ljeremy@sph.com.sg

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