Kuala Lumpur Thunder recorded their third successive win after defeating Johor Tigris in the fifth round of the Ekspres Perdana Sepak Takraw League (STL) 2016 at the Serdang Jaya Municipal Council Stadium, today.
Fresh from their 2-0 victory over defending champions ATM Guardians, the Thunders were hoping to emulate their performance in today’s match as it will ensure they leapfrog Kedah Eagles into third place before the latter’s match tomorrow against league leader’s, Terengganu Turtles.
Thunder’s coach, Azhar Sarabini opted for the trio of Aizat Nor Azmi (tekong), Amirul Zazwan Amir (feeder) and Hafiz Rahman (striker) who came in for Zamree Dahan. Thunder stormed to victory in the first set within 20 minutes with a 21-9 score line.
In the second set, Tigris trio Haidzir Rashid (tekong), Lutfil Azmi (feeder) and Norhafizi Razak (striker) refused to go down easily thus increasing their momentum to storm home to a 21-15 win, taking the match into the tie-breaker.
After 75 minutes of non-stop action, Thunder went back home smiling after edging Tigris 21-18 to move up into third place of the league while condemning the Southern boys to their 4th defeat of the season, leaving them lying in fifth place.
Thunder will take on Kedah Eagles next Saturday while Johor Tigris face-off with the in-form Turtles hoping to avoid another defeat to climb up into the top four spot which will advance into the play-off round in mid-December.
In the second match of the day, Penang Black Panthers clashed with Melaka Titans, with hopes of overcoming their defeat at the hands of Turtles, yesterday.
After yesterday’s intense match, Panthers coach, Helmi Ismail opted with Kamal Ishak on the inside right role, replacing Azlan Alias while partnering Syahir Rosdi (tekong) and Suhairi Sulaiman (feeder).
As expected, the Panthers carved out an easy 2-0 win over the Titans trio of Sahidan Ali (tekong), Zarlizan Zakaria (feeder) and Amirul Asyraf Idris (striker), claiming the first set 21-17 before undergoing nervy moments towards the end of the second set to win 22-20.
While the win sees Panthers remain in second place, cutting the gap with league-leaders Turtles to 4 points, Melaka Titans stay bottom place with the STL 2016 approaching mid-season.