KUALA LUMPUR, June 23 Malaysia stormed into the semi-finals of the Asian Netball Championship after beating Hong Kong 52-26 in a Group B match at the Juara Stadium, Bukit Kiara Sports Complex Tuesday.
Malaysia's leading scorer throughout the championship, S. Aruna, once again lived up to expectations with 35 goals while Nur Ezzaini Mohd Nur (15) and Nur Atikah Mat Salleh (2) also played their part in the victory.
The win against Hong Kong today was Malaysia's third in the championship after wins over India and Pakistan earlier but losing to Sri Lanka meant they finish second in Group B behind the Sri Lankans.
In the semi-finals, Malaysia will meet Group A winner and defending champion Singapore on Friday while Sri Lanka face Thailand.
In another Group B match played today, India whipped Pakistan 53-24.
"In today's match, the opponents were a little aggressive but the players were cautious and careful to avoid any serious injuries.
"Despite the win, there is much room for improvement, especially in defence. But overall, all the players put in a good performance," skipper Nur Ain Ramlan told Bernama after the match.
As for the semi-final match against Singapore, which will actually be a repeat of the 2005 final, Nur Ain said the Singaporeans are fast and physically fit.
"We have two days to draw out our strategy to overcome them," she said.