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Friday, February 24, 2012

Politics into play? - Part 2, An open letter from JFL

I'd like to personally thank Zaini Mazlan the coordinator of SJCYFL for his comments. I agree that there is much untapped talent nationwide. We have actually come up with a plan to reach all the states years ago and had shared it to our sponsors so that they could see the long term benefits of such plans. Unfortunately in hindsight, we were too transparent.

While it is clear that 1MCC has followed exactly our formula right down to the design of registration forms and teams, playing fields and prize money as such, we have decided for the development of football in the country we will allow them to do so. To stop them will mean stunting the development of our youth. And that WE WILL NOT do.

For the past 3 years we have persevered through the tough times just to prove to people and show them the talent and the ability of our kids. At great cost we have developed a tv highlights show for Astro as they also saw that potential. Whilst we have literally written the book nationally, it has been without any government funds at all. Friends, family and now sponsors who saw that potential joined us.

We are a sports marketing company and not individuals, but it is true we are up against a big corporation seemingly backed politically. Companies of our size are the lifeblood of this country and eventually the powers to be will see that. Just like in sports, life is filled with competition but everyone cheers for the small guy who gave it his all. Keeping ourselves firmly focussed on the ideals and goals we set out with will ensure and encourage others to do the same.

My personal belief is that sports should be politics free, just like the leagues in Australia, UK, US, Germany etc. While we were hard at work in the unfashionable world of grassroots football, no one came around to encourage us but the rakyat. There were no speeches, handshaking of the sort. This was football; simple, pure with innocent kids and parents involved.

I'm glad it has evolved and grown with Astro's broadcast and our hard work. Now that it's become fashionable it's great to see others take up the mantle and run with it. Though it disappoints us that they have followed our formula, it's great to know that our malaysian ingenuity has opened doors for many other kids.

While it is an uphill climb to success, we will continue to do so and ensure that more kids are exposed to competitive football. We will continue to keep ourselves focussed on the development of the game with the JFL and we fear no competition. As innovators and creators of the JFL, we now know what possibly Steve Jobs felt like when he saw a competitors copy of the Iphone. he just went back in and made his Iphone better!

Like Vince Lombardi said' " Winning means you're willing to go longer, work harder, and give more than anyone else".

By Manvir J, JFL Communication Director.

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