Selangor head coach, Mehmet Durakovic has described the ‘Red Giants’ victory to accomplish the ’33rd mission’ by winning the Malaysia Cup after a 10-year drought is the most memorable thing that he will remember in his career as coach.

(The 33rd mission is winning the Malaysia Cup for the 33rd time)

The former Australian international who lifted the Malaysia Cup with the team thrice — 1995, 1996 and 1997 — also praised his boys’ for putting up a splendid performance after registering a comfortable 2-0 victory over the Premier League champion, Kedah in tonight’s Malaysia Cup final at the Shah Alam Stadium.

“It has been 10 years for Selangor before we achieved this target. It is a special moment for me, my family, the players and especially, this victory is (dedicated) to the Sultan of Selangor (Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah), in conjunction with his (Majesty’s) birthday (yesterday),” he said.

He was speaking to reporters after the match which saw striker, Ahmad Hazwan Bakri earn himself a brace with a strike in the third and 47th minute.

In this regard, Kedah coach Tan Cheng Hoe is satsified with the ‘Red Eagles’ achievements in the Malaysia League this season even though they failed to lift the Malaysia Cup after emerging as Premier League champions.

He said the success in qualifying for the Malaysia Cup final was itself a bonus to the ‘Red Eagles’ after they had met their Key Performance Index set by the Football Association of Kedah (KFA), which was to earn promotion into the Super League next season by being champions of the Premier League this season.

“I am proud of the players’ achievements this season. It was not an easy feat to make it into the Malaysia Cup final. Had we won the Malaysia Cup, it is another added bonus to us as we have clinched the Premier League title this season,” he added.

Elaborating on tonight’s match, Cheng Hoe felt the pitch was quite slippery after the rain just before the match began, which affected the movements of his players to hunt for the equalising goals.

At the same time, Cheng Hoe, who was assistant coach of Harimau Malaya hoped the young players of Kedah who were in action tonight would view the defeat as a useful lesson to improve their performances in future. – BERNAMA

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