BRUNEI guaranteed themselves a silver medal in the sepak takraw team event of the 3rd Borneo Games after beating both Sarawak and Labuan 3-0 yesterday.
After winning the same event at the last edition of the Games in Kuching in 2007, the national team will have the chance to defend their title in their last match of the category against Sabah today.
The pair of wins yesterday means that Brunei have won a medal in the team event for every year since the inaugural edition of the Games in Sabah in 2005, which saw Brunei return with silver in the team event and gold in the inter-regu event.
They defeated Sarawak 21-18, 21-15, 15-7 in the first set and 21-15, 21-17 in the second set at the Sg Kebun Sports Complex in Lumapas.
Though they fell 18-21 in the first match of the third set, they came back strong in the second and third match which they won 21-12 and 15-4 respectively.
Their second game in the afternoon saw them beat Labuan 21-5, 21-19 in the first set, 21-10, 21-13 in the second set and 21-16, 21-11 in the third set.
Setting up a title deciding clash against favourites Sabah at 9:30 today morning, their coach attributed the wins yesterday to their superior technique.
"Brunei won because of our better technique, they really did," said Muhd Maziz Abdullah.
"I am happy with the team's performance. Although the game against Sarawak was fast and they did not really give us a chance to perform, we got back against Labuan.
"Hopefully it will be the same tomorrow (Tuesday) against Sabah," he added.
Sabah beat both Labuan and Sarawak 3-0 in yesterday's action.
They saw off Labuan 21-15, 21-9 in the first set, 21-11, 21-17 in the second set and 16-21, 21-7, 15-9 in the third set.
Their match against Sarawak in the afternoon was a 21-11, 21-12 win in the first set, a 21-8, 21-15 result in the second set and a 21-10, 21-19 victory in the third set.
"Tomorrow's (Tuesday) match is like a final really and I think we have a 50/50 chance of beating Sabah," said Muhd Maziz.
"Their strength is that they have been training since the beginning of this year, so that is a long time since we only started in September," he added.
The inaugural edition of the Games in Sabah saw Brunei return with gold in the inter-regu event and silver in the team event.
Brunei are represented by 12 players this year they will be competing in all three categories - doubles, triple and team.
The doubles and triples events which will start tomorrow will also see Melaka and East Kalimantan compete.
Though the batch of players representing Brunei is young, they are all experienced.
Muhd Maziz said that he has been coaching this crop of players for the past four years since they were in the Department of Youth and Sports sepak takraw scheme.
Watching them develop from the age of 13 or 14, Muhd Maziz said he has seen tremendous improvement.
More than half of the team represented Brunei at the 24th King's Cup Sepak Takraw World Championship in Thailand in July and the 2009 World Sepak Takraw Championship in Terengganu, Malaysia in May.
The team returned from Thailand with a gold medal in the Division 1 team event and finished with two silver and one bronze medal in Terengganu, where they were competing in Division 2
Courtesy from Brunei Times