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By Brad Rantayy
Miri, Jan 2: Two Sarawakians, both Ibans, have been selected to represent Malaysia in the Women’s World Floorball Championship 2019 qualification stage in Thailand.
The duo, Ivana Sonia Beriak and Janeter Kadir, will be at the Asia Oceania qualification from Jan 27 to Feb 1 at Huamark Indoor Stadium in Bangkok. They are currently undergoing centralised training with the other national players in Kuala Lumpur.
Ivana is from Kampung Sampun Gerunggang in Asajaya, Samarahan. She was introduced to floorball by friends while pursuing her degree in Universiti Malaya in 2015. She has since completed her studies, majoring in sports science.
The coming tournament is her fourth national call-up.
At the 2015 SEA Games in Singapore, Malaysia took the bronze medal. She was also called up for the 2018 Asia-Oceania Floorball Confederation Cup in Singapore and the 2017 World Floorball Qualification Cup in New Zealand.
Janeter is from Miri and is a student of Kolej Tun Datu Tuanku Haji Bujang Miri. She caught the floorball bug in early 2017 after joining competitions organised by i-Systems College Miri.
She was spotted by talent scouts when she participated in the National Floorball Championship that was held in Shah Alam recently.
The trip to Thailand will be her first for the country, and it represents a dream come true for her.
The International Floorball Federation (IFF) has received 30 entries for the 12th IFF Women´s World Floorball Championships that will be held in December this year in Neuchâtel, Switzerland.
Switzerland, as the host country, receives an automatic qualification, while the remaining 29 countries must compete against each other for the remaining 15 places. The final round will be held with 16 teams, divided into four groups according to their ranking and ballot draw.
In Europe, there will be four qualification groups at two locations — Gdansk (Poland) and Trencin (Slovakia). The Asia-Oceania qualification will be held in Bangkok, Thailand. The Americas qualification will be played near Detroit, USA.
In AOFC, the teams are divided into two groups, and the teams will play against each other once in their group. The Group A teams are Australia, Thailand, New Zealand and the Philippines.
The Group B teams are Malaysia, Japan, Singapore and Korea.
In Sarawak, floorball started in Miri in 2014 by i-Systems College Miri. The sport is now being played in various secondary schools here.
The college recently sent a men’s team to represent Sarawak in the 2018 Merdeka Cup National Floorball Championship in Shah Alam. Efforts are now being made to form the Sarawak Floorball Association. Malaysia Floorball Association is also making plans to submit the sport for Sukma 2020. — DayakDaily