Friday, 28 October 2011

Speedy midfielder Kunanlan prepared to trouble Terengganu

Negeri Sembilan's S. Kunanlan cut short his Deepavali celebrations to report for training in Paroi on Wednesday.

The left winger was one of the first ones at the training ground and his readiness to train even surprised coach Azraai Khor Abdullah, who was not expecting him to arrive early.

Kunanlan has sacrificed Deepavali celebrations with his family for training, and this shows he is determined to help Negeri win the Malaysia Cup title tomorrow.

"I have promised my family and friends a party if I return with the winner's medal on Saturday (tomorrow). I want a happy Deepavali and to have that, I need to give my 100 per cent in the match," said Kunanlan yesterday.

"Everyone in the team has little time for matters outside the training ground. We just want to go through the training drills before we travel to Shah Alam Stadium for the final."

The 25-year-old may not have scored many goals this season but his eye-catching runs along the left flank and inch-perfect crosses have helped Negeri make an impact on the tournament.

Kunanlan is expected to be closely shadowed by Terengganu players but the national player is prepared for the challenge.

"I am prepared for anything. I will be unstoppable and my markers had better be prepared for it.

"I want to repay Negeri for making me a better player. I was signed as an unknown by Negeri five years ago and today, because of them, I have achieved so much in the game," said the Semenyih-born midfielder.

Kunanlan was rejected by other M-League teams before signing with Negeri and with them, he has won two titles.

He helped Negeri win the 2009 Malaysia Cup and 2010 FA Cup titles, then under coach Wan Jamak Wan Hassan.

On tomorrow's final, Kunanlan said Negeri must dictate the pace and score early goals to rattle Terengganu.

"We cannot allow them to score first. If they do, then it would be tough for us. I believe we need to build our game patiently from the back throughout the match," he added.

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