Sunday, November 8, 2009

View From The Stands

The stage was set. A sea of red greeted my arrival in Bukit Jalil yesterday. 3/4 of the stadium was jam packed with fans bedecked in red and white. The noise level was wild, drums and trumpets helped to trump up the atmosphere and synchronise chants. Banners was unfurled around the stadium and flags of various kinds were on display (one joker even brought a PAS flag with a silhouette of the Malaysia Cup on the white 'moon'). Everyone was in a party mood - anticipating an excellent game as just reward for making a lot of effort to attend the game and show their support. It's game time!

But we were to be disappointed by an abject display by the team. The defenders were disorganised at best, missing tackles and making miskicks. The midfield went missing for major parts of the game. The strikers seemed nervy and kept holding on to the ball for too long. Main culprits would be Nizad Ayub (7), Norhisham Hasan (9) and Zamri Ramli (27). Looking at their game, they should be playing in Liga Belia Jajahan Bachok instead of at the highest level like this. Us in the stands were getting very frustrated with the inept gameplay on show.

After Shahurain scored the excellent first goal (again due to bad defending on our part), word on the stands was that we will not come back from that since the team is known to play badly after getting behind. True to word, they did. We still had hope going into half time though. But when Hairuddin scored another (yes you guessed it, atrocious defending again!) from the get go of the second half, there seemed to be no way back now. Even with Nizad and Norhisham taken out replaced by Che Hisamuddin (11) and Khalid Jamlus (25), the performance did not improve by much. By then it became apparent who is the worst player on the pitch. From where I'm sitting, major calls for Zamri to be taken out (and probably buang daerah to Rompin) was getting louder. I guess Negri players have also identified him as the weak spot as most of their attacks started coming through their left flank. It was like Negri having an extra player with his bad passes, positioning and tackles. It's practically a game of 10 against 12.

When Zamri brought down a Negri player for the penalty, the Red Warriors fell silent. Zaquan Adha converted coolly, and at 0-3 down I decided to leave this debacle for my long train ride home. Apparently quite a lot of other people felt the same way. I think I caught the first train out of Bukit Jalil but it was packed full to the brim with Kelantan supporters. There's still a crowd on the platform, mind you. I'll tell you later about the train ride itself ;)

Some supporters threw firecrackers and bottles and even burnt stuff last night, but somehow I understood. You have to be there in the stands to understand the frustration. It didn't make it right, and I should know better since I had a firecracker explode at my calf leaving an angry red patch of irritated and slightly singed skin, but understandable. Many of these folks came all the way from Kelantan by all means possible. Some took leave to ensure they had time to queue up to get the tickets while some paid crazy money to buy tickets from touts when all else fails. When more than 60,000 supporters made all kinds of effort off the pitch, shouldn't we be expecting the team to be making the effort on the pitch too?

Yes we lost to the better team. Negri absolutely deserved the win, and we deserved the thumping we got. I reserve my praise only for Indra Putra (23) Daudsu Jamaluddin (15) and Halim Napi (1) who played well enough to preserve whatever pride we have left. Well boys, let's start looking forward to next year. Bukit Jalil sekali lagi boh tahung depé? Bereh!


cacah said...

i was there! :P

The Banker said...

a lot of ppl i know were there, wouldnt miss it for the world!

ZubaidahArshad said...

guano boh buleh sebutir jah? haha

The Banker said...

haha, sebutir pon mujur!

NoktahHitam said...

Damaged caused - RM 214k. Is it still justifiable? Tough to say. I think FAM will react to this soon.

The Banker said...

i really do wonder what kind of damage is worth 214k. sounds like a whole section of seats was destroyed, which is not the case.

but then i never said the actions were justifiable, i only said i understood why they were angry. i even said it's not right. check your facts bro.