Malaria rules Ambassa out of Cup clash

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 06 April, 2000, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 06 April, 2000, 12:00am

Instant-Dict's Cameroonian midfielder Guy Ambassa will miss tonight's FA Cup semi-final against Happy Valley after coming down with a mild case of malaria.

Ambassa, known simply as JJ to his friends, is suspected to have contracted the disease while playing in Africa in the Olympic qualifiers last month.

He played two matches (home and away) against South Africa and one match in Guinea, although he is suspected to have caught the disease in Kenya in transit on his way back to Hong Kong.

'I think I will be out for about two weeks. It's not so serious and I should be OK. It's a weak strain of malaria. I'm disappointed not to be playing,' said the 22-year-old Ambassa.

It is the second time Ambassa has been forced on to the sidelines in an important game this season.

In January, he missed the Dickies' league match against South China after receiving a one-match ban for being sent off in his team's 2-1 win over Sai Kung.

Ambassa's absence will be a blow to the Dickies, who are desperate to turn their season around.

The big-spending club have failed to make the league championship playoffs for the second year running. And although safe at the top of the relegation playoffs, they have experienced a season they would rather forget.

Tonight's match against Happy Valley presents the last chance for Instant-Dict to make something of their season.

However, Instant-Dict have struck a rich rein of form recently, winning their past four games.

Indonesian international forward Rochi Putiray has hit a purple patch, scoring two goals in his team's 3-0 win over Kitchee in the FA Cup last week.

Happy Valley's form, on the other hand, has been shaky. Since losing to Sun Hei 2-0 last month, they drew 2-2 with South China in the league and thrashed Rangers 4-1 in the FA Cup last week.

South China, meanwhile, will take on Yee Hope in tonight's earlier Cup semi-final - the clubs' third meeting in four weeks.

The Caroliners' last outing against Yee Hope ended in a 2-1 win for them.

The Caroliners are keeping their fingers crossed that lightning will strike twice at Mongkok Stadium.