Singapore custodian Hassan Sunny's Japan stint was cut short due to heavy snowfall in Osaka region but the veteran goalkeeper believes he has come back with "invaluable experience".
The Home United goalkeeper received a surprise offer from J.League's third-tier club Gainare Tottori to play a couple of training games with them. Hassan played around 70 minutes after reaching their training base J-Green Sakai in their 3-3 draw against South Korean giants Incheon United on Sunday.
He was scheduled to play another game with Gainare on Monday against J4 side Dezzolla Shimane but the 32-year-old was forced to return due to heavy snowfall in the region. The Singapore international revealed that Gainare coach lauded him for his contribution during the game. Hassan also added how he had battled the low temperature at the training base during the game and that managing a draw against one of Asia's top clubs was a memorable achievement for Gainare.
"It was an unforgettable experience: the temperature was around five Degrees Celsius during the game and my toes were freezing [before coming on]! We drew 3-3, I think that is a good result... they were playing with four foreigners and we didn't have any," Hassan said, as quoted by Today.
"I played from the middle of the second third and the (whole) final third â one third is 45 minutes each. The coach said 'nice keeper', which is their way of saying 'good game', [and telling me that I had] good communication with the team."
'Standard of J3 equivalent to Thai Premier League'
While maintaining that the intensity and the standard of play at the J3 side is equivalent to Thai League, the former Army United player said that his agent, who arranged the trip, has promised him about another stint in summer, later this year.
"Before I came here, I thought J3 is just a very low division, but the standard of J3 is equivalent to Thai clubs [and maybe] even better than some of the teams in Thailand," Hassan, who had spent two years at Thai Premier League, said.
"I think the standard is very high, the intensity is crazy, with 90 minutes of pressing, and it is very high tempo. Also, this [J-Green Sakai] is the Japan national team's training camp base. I think it's the biggest in Japan and I am just thankful for the opportunity to train at these kind of facilities.
"My agent is fixing something again in June. He said it is better for me go during summer [due to the better weather]. I understand June has FIFA international dates, so I am not sure what will happen, but hopefully I can spend one or two weeks."