KUALA LUMPUR: National coach Lee Nyuk Fah hopes his boys will be able to give South Korea a run for their money when they lock horns in the Asia Rugby Championship (ARC) at the Incheon Namdong Field on Saturday.
In the first round, Malaysia lost their matches to Korea (35-10) and Hong Kong (67-8) both at the National Stadium in Bukit Jalil.
Nyuk Fah, however, believes his charges can do better after showing glimpses of their true potential in the opening matches.
"This is the first time in history that we are competing in ARC (top tier) and you have to admit that both Korea and Hong Kong are a class above us," said Nyuk Fah.
"It will take time for us to be able to match them but having said that we are hoping to give Korea a tough fight when we play on Saturday.
"As I have said before, we have identified a number of weaknesses and we are working on them.
"The most important thing is that our players remain calm and do not commit unforced errors as we did then. If we can do this then we can be more competitive."
Nyuk Fah will be without two naturalised Fijians — Aporosa Duwailea and Sakiusa Terence — for the game but has otherwise named the same squad he had against Hong Kong earlier this month.
"Aporosa has not be released by his employer while Sakiusa had issues with his visa. I have called up Danial Noor Hamidi and Amirul Aqil Kamsol in their place," added Nyuk Fah.
After two games, Malaysia are third in the competition with no points behind Hong Kong (nine points) and Korea (five).
Malaysia will play their away match against Hong Kong on June 2 at the Hong Kong Football Club Stadium.
The squad: Danial Noor Hamidi, Amirul Mukminin Azman, Nurazaman Ramli, Timoci Vunimoku, Syarif Saiful Aazwan Sudin, Nur Ikqwan Nordin, Syahir Asraf Rosli, Azmir Zanul Abdin, Aliff Sazrie Azmi, Aiman Jamaluddin, Amirul Aqil Kamsol, Vatimio Rabebe, Sae Faalupega, Alif Al Hafiz Abdul Karim, Amin Jamaluddin, Syarif Nurhidayat Muzhaimey, Farid Sujari, Samuela Tamanisau, Lawrence Petrus, Nas Affie Mohd Salleh, Syahmi Afiq Edan, Etonia Vaqa Saukuru, Wan Mohd Asyraf Norudin