Brunei national sepak takraw players (L) in action during an earlier competition. Brunei will compete at the International Sepak Takraw Federation (ISTAF) Super Series 2013/14 Finals from March 5-9. BT file
The national sepak takraw team are ready for the International Sepak Takraw Federation (ISTAF) Super Series 2013/14 Finals.
They will be looking to improve on their ranking at the March 5-9 competition at the Titiwangsa Indoor Stadium in Kuala Lumpur.
The Sultanate will be represented by Ismail Ang (killer), Mohd Shukri Jaineh (killer), Nur Alimin Sunggoh (tekong) and brothers Mohd Alifuddin (tekong) and Mohd Hafizuddin Jamaluddin (feeder) in the Malaysian capital.
With a total of 13 teams vying for top honours in the men's category, Brunei have been drawn with Japan, China and Iran in Group D.
Ex-national player Japar Wali is standing in as the coach for the national squad after Ittiphol Chomchaissak's contract ended on December 31 after serving 12 years in the Sultanate.
Having started training together in January, Japar is hoping for a good outing in Malaysia.
"We have been training as usual and hopefully we can put up a better performance in KL. I hope that we will be able to improve on our placing from the last time," said Japar in an interview with The Brunei Times when met yesterday at the Multipurpose Hall of the Menglait Sports Complex.
"The players have all been working hard right after the SEA Games. It will be tough and Japan is the team to look out for in our group," added the 60-year-old.
"We will try our best to advance out of the group stages. The tekong is very important for all teams. We hope that they will be able to deliver," he continued.
Defending champions Thailand are in Group A along with Germany and India while Group B consists of hosts Malaysia, Singapore and debutants France.
Indonesia, US and South Korea make up Group C to complete the field.
The overall results from the tournament will determine the seedings for the 2014 ISTAF World Cup which will be held in Thailand in May.
Details of the World Cup will be announced after the competition concludes.
Brunei competed in all three rounds of the ISTAF Super Series 2013 last year.
They finished ninth in the first two legs in India and Thailand respectively.
With the seniors busy preparing for the 27th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games, the junior squad rose to the challenge and placed sixth in the final leg in Kota Kinabalu from Oct 31 - Nov 3.