Irfan and Shawal delighted by call-up, vows to impress
Irfan, the eldest son of Singapore’s football legend Fandi Ahmad, was arguably the biggest surprise choice as the 19-year-old only recently returned to action ever since he enlisted for National Service in March.
Nonetheless, he asserted his intention to show that he deserved his spot with the Lions.
“I’m very excited to have been called up to the National ‘A’ Team. I had played for the various age-group national youth teams over the past few years and it is always with pride and passion whenever I wear the National jersey,” Irfan said in a media statement.
“Having progressed through the youth development system, I am thankful to my coaches – both past and present – for their guidance and advice.
“I will continue to work hard and will strive to do my best if I’m selected for the upcoming matches. I hope fans will turn up in red and cheer us on at the National Stadium next Friday,” said Irfan.
Geylang flanker Shawal is untested at the international level too, but he has been in good form ever since a run of games in the League Cup. The 25-year-old even scored a sumptuous 35-yard goal against Albirex Niigata (S) in that tournament.
Sundram expressed that he was looking forward to Shawal’s performance, adding that this is a sign other players in the league too have a chance of earning a call-up, should they play well.
“Another player I am looking forward to seeing up close is Shawal Anuar. I have repeatedly said that the door to the National Team is always open as long as you play well for your club; Shawal has been doing well in the S.League, so this call-up is a reward for his good performances,” the Dazzler said.
Shawal was understandably delighted with his call-up and he was eager to link up with veterans Shahril Ishak and Khairul Amri.
“Being a part of coach Sundram’s squad for these two matches gives me a golden opportunity for me to prove myself,” he said.
“I will continue to work hard to show coach what I can do, and what I can bring to the team. I can’t wait to train, and hopefully play, with players like Shahril Ishak and Khairul Amri.”
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Main Photo: Geylang International