Piala Agong was introduced more than 3 decades ago with PDRM winning the inaugural Cup in 1983. The prestigious competition provides the venue for the states to compete against each other and also includes PDRM and ATM.
ATM is the side with the most win, winning the Cup on 11 occasions. A formidable force in the late 1980s to mid-1990s. Selangor is next with 6, followed by Kelantan and Sabah with 4 each. Last year, the Cup was won by Perak, their maiden winning in a dramatic comeback in the final.
This year, it seems that the Cup is taking a back seat as the nation is busy with ARC Division 1 tournament and also the SEA Games. Not much publicity albeit that the imminent kickoff, with the opening game scheduled on 29 July 2017.
Despite that heavyweight such as Terengganu, Kedah and Johor are on business as usual mode. Kedah engaged the services of the Keris Conlay and their captain Fairuz Rahman. In addition, they also roped in Amirul Mukminin the national player and Akmal “Pulut” to strengthen their squad.
Johor is finalizing their player selection and the final list is expected to be ready by next week. Terengganu brought in several MASUM gold medal winners including the captain Nazuridin Abd Latiff, Iqwain Aqmal, speedster Azizul Hakim and the kicker Muhammad Faizal.
The notable absentees for 2017 are Selangor and Kuala Lumpur. Despite having active local leagues and strong programs at grass root level, both teams have decided to give Piala Agong a miss. A major set back for the Tournament, especially in the case of Selangor which has good pedigree in Piala Agong, winning the Cup on 6 occasions.
File photo of victorious Johor team for 2013 Edition.