KUALA TERENGGANU (13 JUNE, 2013): The stage is all set for the second edition of the Red Bull Futsal Tri-Nations Cup 2013 – one of the most spectacular event at Stadium Negeri Kuala Terengganu starting tomorrow.
Two teams each from three Southeast Asian countries – Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei – are poised to stamp their authority in the two-day event which is expected to draw a large crowd of enthusiastic futsal fans.
Predictions, however, have been running high for a home team victory through Gelombang FC which would be a celebration of sorts for local fans in conjunction with ‘Visit Terengganu Year 2013’. But this is merely being wishful thinking.
Gelombang FC, who finished runners-up in the Red Bull Futsal Grand Finals in Kuala Lumpur last year, face stiff competition in the form of Selangor’s M.A.C. FC – the eventual Grand Finals champions, Royal Brunei Armed Forces Sports Council (MS ABDB), and Indera Sports Club Futsal, while Singapore’s challenge will be spearheaded by Mountbatten FC ‘A’ and ‘B’ teams.
All six teams are truly champions in their own ways and this makes the battle for the Red Bull Futsal Tri-Nations Cup 2013 a far more challenging experience. At stake is not only the most sought after coveted trophy but the dangle of a RM20, 000 prize money for the champions.
Perhaps Royal Brunei Armed Forces Sports Council and Indera Sports Club Futsal, were the wisest of them all – or were they being simply too modest, by playing down their chances on arrival at the Sultan Mahmud Airport on Wednesday.
“We have no knowledge of the strength of the four other opponents. I guess we will know once the tournament gets started. Right now we are just groping in the dark,” said MS ABDB team manager Capt (Air Force) Awangku Muhammad Mufid.
“In all honestly, it is an open race out there. There are no clear favourites at this point of time as I believe all the teams are just equal. Neither are we under pressure to perform,” he added. For the record, Bandar Seri Begawan’s QAF FC ‘B’ emerged champions in 2011.
Red Bull Executive Director, Jyn Wee, quipped that the Red Bull Futsal Tri-Nations Cup will uncover a number of talented players from the six participating teams which will eventually benefit their respective national teams.
“The stage is set for the biggest futsal event and we are all looking forward to what unfolds in the next two days. We have lined-up the best teams from Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei for the fans here,” added Wee.
Mimi Afzan Afza, the M.A.C. FC team manager, however, is oozing with confidence as experience is their forte. Having won the Red Bull Futsal Grand Finals, MAC is determined to continue the momentum from where they left off.
“We are extremely excited and ready for the big challenge ahead. It will be interesting competing against teams from Brunei and Singapore as it will give us a chance to gain the experience in a regional international tournament,” said Mimi Afzan, whose romance with the game prompted her to set up the team two years ago.
But futsal is a sport that demands a lot, so much so that even soothsayers who have made predictions in past World Cup Futsal matches, would probably not want to venture into the Red Bull Futsal Tri-Nations Cup 2013 as credentials alone, and a strong resume, will not be good enough to tell what will unfold for all six contenders in the next two days.
It is the ability to minimise errors, stay patient in front of roaring fans, amazing team strategies and some dramatic long-range blasts that will eventually prove to be the winner, separating the title pretenders from the gladiators.
With the tag of early favourites thrown out of the window, it is a tricky situation at Stadium Negeri Kuala Terengganu tomorrow. There is more than just pride at stake in this second edition of the Red Bull Futsal Tri-Nations Cup.
Fixtures – Friday (June 14): Indera SC v Mountbatten FC ‘B’ (9.30am); MS ABDB v Mountbatten FC ‘A’ (3pm); M.A.C. FC (Malaysia) v Mountbatten FC ‘B’ (6.30pm); Gelombang FC (Malaysia) v Mountbatten FC ‘A (8.30pm).
Saturday – June 15: M.A.C. FC (Malaysia) v Indera SC (10am); Gelombang FC v MS ABDB (12 noon); Third-Fourth placing (6.00pm); Final (8.30pm).
Released by Shekhinah PR on behalf of Red Bull Malaysia. For further information please contact:
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