Friday, August 14

Crocs all set for Premier League curtain raiser

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KUCHING: The Crocs are going all out to prepare for the curtain raiser of the 2011 Premier League season against Pulau Pinang at Stadium Bandaraya on Jan 31.

VALUABLE TIPS: Vest (second left) talks to the players during a training session at the State Stadium last Friday. From left are Sulaiman, Shamsurin and Jahar. — Photo by Jeffery Mostapa

Local fans however will only get to see the Crocs playing at home soil when they face Harimau Muda B at the Sarawak stadium on Feb 11.

The state team then will play against SDM Navy on Feb 14 also at home.

“The FA Cup against ATM on Feb 19 is however uncertain whether we will play home or away,” said coach Zaki Sheikh Ahmad, as the stadium for ATM is shared between three other teams including Sime Darby.

“At the moment, we are preparing the squad and try to strengthen each department,” he added yesterday.

“The job now is to fine-tune and patch up the weaknesses identified during our tour of friendly matches,” said Zaki, whose side managed to beat the 2010 Malaysia Cup champions Kelantan 2-1 in Kota Bahru on Dec 27.

According to Zaki, the squad had undergone their fitness test last week and trainings are ongoing and on course even though few of his boys are nursing injuries.

“Players including Dzulazlan Ibrahim (forward) have picked up an ankle injury as Sharizan Sahari is nursing a groin injury,” said Zaki of the injured list, which grew after Saiful Sabtu was stretchered out during their friendly against Kedah.

On the latest development, Zaki said a seminar would be held for all players tomorrow.

He also said on Wednesday, the squad would be having a sparring match with the President’s Cup squad coached by former striker Shamsurin Abdul Rahman.

“The match will be good for both sides,” said Zaki as both squads are preparing for the new season.

This year, Sarawak will compete with PDRM, Johor, Johor Majlis Perbandaran Muar, KL Pos Malaysia, Harimau Muda B, ATM, Selangor PKNS, Pulau Pinang, Pulau Pinang Kelab Bolasepak USM, SDM Navy, Perlis and Sime Darby for the Premier League honour.