Sufian dedicates hat-trick to first child
The striker scored a late treble to seal a morale-boosting 4-1 win against Pahang, lifting the reigning Malaysian Super League (MSL) champions within four points of the top.
Keen-eyed spectators would have noticed his Bebeto-esque rocking baby celebrations, as well as the sight of him tucking the match ball under his shirt at the final whistle.
“My wife is now six months into pregnancy,” Sufian told FourFourTwo a day after the game.
“Thus I dedicated the hat-trick to her and this is going to be our first child.
"Hopefully this can be a good luck charm for me!”
Pahang had taken an early lead on the night, but the hosts found an equaliser through ever-dependable captain Safuwan Baharudin before the break.
Just as the tie looked to be heading for a draw, up popped unlikely hero Sufian as he scored three quickfire goals in the final 15 minutes.
These three goals were the 26-year-old's first of the 2014 MSL season, and there was a palpable look of relief at breaking his duck as he sprinted towards the fans following each of the goals.
“Of course I feel very happy lah!” Sufian said.
“It’s like… How to say? It’s like God wants to give it to you.
"After all, you don’t get a hat-trick that often! At the same time, I also want to be humble about this.”
There was admittedly an element of fortune in each of his three goals, but the man himself didn't seem too fussed.
“I think luck definitely played a part,” he said.
“It just doesn’t happen every day that the ball bounce and you just have to follow up in front of goal.”
Having opened his accounts, Sufian hopes to secure a starting spot in the upcoming games but revealed that he is not adverse to reprising the role of ‘Super Sub'.
“Of course I will prefer to start but I don’t mind other players starting,” he said.
“I always strive to come in and give my 100 percent.
"Even for it’s for just 10 minutes, I will let my boots do the talking.”
The LionsXII will next travel away to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to take second-placed Selangor FA this Saturday and Sufian wants his side to build on the win against Pahang.
“It’s very important to stay consistent from now on,” he said.
“There’ll be ups and downs throughout the season, but we will take one game at a time.
"Facing Selangor will of course be tough, but I believe we will be able to match them.”