KOTA KINABALU: Ian and Duncan – will have the chance to follow the footsteps of their father – King James Wong.
The siblings are among those who have been attending training with the Rhinos since Wednesday. However, before they could emulate the success story of their father, who is a living legend as far as Malaysian football is concerned, they certainly need to do a lot to earn a place in the State team – their first hurdle.
But as long as they have that burning desire to succeed within them, they certainly can do it. Furthermore, Ian is no stranger to the State side, as he was part of the Under-19 squad a few years back, while his younger sibling is in his first attempt at donning the Rhinos’ colours.
The Rhinos’ first two days of training has been pretty encouraging! It has been quite awhile since the first-day of training attracted so many players. But since they started on Wednesday, over 20 players – current, former and new faces – turned up at the Kota Kinabalu Sports Complex field B.
And if this is anything to go by, then those who dream of seeing the Rhinos represented by all-local players in the upcoming M-League could well see their dream come true. And this is surely a positive sign for the Rhinos, who were once a force to be reckoned with.
For the time being training is under the watchful eyes of assistant coach Burhan Ajui, who is also a former Rhino. With the Sabah FA’s determination to groom more local players for the new season that is expected to kick off in early January, having an all-local side is something that could turn into reality!
Rahman Zakaria is delighted with the positive outlook of the team.
“It is good to see because we are just starting our preparations for the new season.
“Furthermore, it is our hope to see more local players in the Sabah team and my advice is for these players to try their best and prove that they deserve to be in the State team,” Rahman, who is an FA Supreme Council member said.
Rahman, who led the Rhinos as team manager last season, added that as long as these hopefuls can prove they have what it takes to be in the team, the team management will waste no time in hiring them.
Rahman went on to say that for a start, the team will prepare for a friendly match against Kota Belud Selection at the end of this month.
“This is just the beginning of our preparations, but by November things will get more serious as more players will be coming,” Rahman said.
Besides Ian and Duncan, among those who turned up for the training were Gasili Pengalot, Joey Ryan Gundok as well as Restu Emat, who are either former Rhinos or ex-Reserve League players.
Almost all local players from the current squad have also been seen during training.