The Ireland men’s national hockey team will play Malaysia for the second time in two days on Wednesday, October 6 in Lisnagarvey.
The two teams will play on Comber Road again after Ireland emerged victorious in the first friendly on Tuesday night.
The 3-2 win was the icing on the cake for Mark Tumilty’s side who played their first capped match at home since 2019.
Debutants Conor Empey and Sam Hyland found the net for the home side as they neat the 11th-ranked side in the world.
Malaysia will be looking to avenge their loss and earn a win for themselves after Empey’s late winner stole the headlines and took the shine off an impressive Malaysian comeback.
The pacey visitors went two goals down in the first quarter but fought their way back into the game and put pressure on the hosts.
Hyland scored with his first international touch with under two minutes on the clock from Ireland’s first chance – the goal was his first for an international side at any level.
Empey made it 2-0 in the eighth minute after coming off the bench as a Shane O’Donoghue surge into the circle saw the ball pop and bounce to the forward who slotted home with glee.
After the swift start, Malaysia – coached by former Irish assistant coach Arul Anthoni – settled and had the greater control in the second quarter.
Three penalty corners were kept out while Irish goalkeeper James Milliken was in control of Abu Kamal Azrai and Azuan Hasan fired shots his way.
Malaysia’s pace caused the hosts problems as they contrived to cough up a perfect chance when Azuan Hasan’s cross was turned in by a foot rather than a stick from point blank range.
The goal did come with mere seconds to go of the third quarter when Azrai raced clear down the left and applied the perfect reverse-stick shot into the bottom corner.
Malaysia were level in contentious fashion when Razie Rahim’s drag-flick hit the backboard, Ireland arguing the ball had never left the attacking circle from the corner injection.
However, Empey saved the day for Tumilty and co., converting a golden opportunity that fell to him with minutes to spare.
Teams In First Friendly
Ireland: J Carr, T Cross, M Nelson, D Walsh, N Glassey, K Marshall, S O’Donoghue, S Murray, J Duncan, B Walker, C Harte
Subs: L Madeley, K O’Dea, P McKibbin, M Robson, C Empey, S Hyland, M Ingram
Malaysia: H Othman, M Jalil, A Hamsani, S Cholan, F Ashari, S Silverius, R Rahim, F Jali, A Hasan, A K Azrai, N Jazlan
Subs: N Hassan, N Sumantri, F Saari, A Zain, A Rozemi, H Abdul, Z P Mizan
The match will be held at Lisnagarvey Hockey Club and kick-off at 7:30 pm. Tickets are available to buy on the Hockey Ireland website.