Search This Blog

Friday, April 20, 2012

When silence is Golden.

No, I wasn't referring to Lee Chong Wei's hit back at National Sports Council (NSC) director general Datuk Zolkples.

oh I just love the headlines!

But rather the comments NSC DG had given to the press on LCW not attending the National Sports Awards on Tuesday.

Below are the extracts of Zolkples' comments in Harian Metro's Betulkah Demam?
“Mungkin hadiah RM20,000 itu tidak bernilai bagi orang yang berpendapatan RM2 atau RM3 juta setahun tapi bagi atlet lain seperti Pandelela Rinong yang pendapatannya kurang daripada RM50,000 setahun, nilai itu cukup besar. Mungkin kita kena naikkan nilai hadiah menjadi RM200,000 baru Chong Wei mahu hadir,” katanya.
“Saya tidak mahu kata sama ada Chong Wei sudah besar kepala atau tidak. Jika Pandelela boleh balik dalam keadaan tidak sepatutnya kerana menganggap anugerah ini penting, terpulanglah kepada anda semua untuk menilainya. Ini bukan kali pertama Chong Wei melakukan perkara begini, suka hati tidak datang ke mana-mana majlis."

Those comments should not have come. To compare with other athletes, not professional. Treat matters on a case to case basis la.

Yet, when LCW - optimistically speaking - comes back from London with the Olympic gold medal these same people will be idolizing him.

Anyway I take my hats off to LCW opening up and giving comments to Mailsport senior reporter Haresh Deol. Not often we see athletes berani buka mulut for negative matters. But when they do, it's more often than not an interesting story to write.
"Bukan saya mula, dia yang mula dulu," said LCW 
"Banyak event saya tak pergi kerana letak event pukul 3, 4 petang. Mana dia boleh blame association. Saya training la bro, macam mana mau pergi. Saya profesional atlit, saya kena train. Kalau saya tak perform atau kalah diorang first untuk hentam saya.
 Much more was said. Read Foul! for the detailed conversation

Btw, I was privy to the conversation between Haresh and Chong Wei.
LCW clearly sounded pist!

I hope more athletes would be daring and speak up against any wrong doings, be it by NSC, their association coach, etc

Thursday, April 19, 2012

A risk worth taking?

It's all about taking risk - after all nothing much can be achieved without taking risk.

That's the matter putting National Juniors coach K. Dharmaraj in a dilemma.

Does he take just one goalkeeper to the hockey Asian Junior Cup (AJC) or have a reserve keeper, who is only going to be a passenger?

The man or rather boy above, Hazrul Faiz Sobri is Dharma's No 1, 2 and 3 choice. 

"They (back-up keepers) just are nowhere near to him. I rather play a sick Hazrul," said Dharma.

Read all about Dharma taking a chance in today Mailsport.

Also, Dharma will be taking 19 players to Malacca until the AJC, whereby one will be dropped. Three players have been named as reserves just in case anyone get's injured in the build up.

He has opted against taking the 3 to Malacca unless absolutely required as he doesn't want players fighting for places to make the team. 

"I want to solely concentrate on the AJC, not selecting my squad of 18.

"I have 12 or 13 players who will form the core of the team," he added.

Read Minimising Distractions in tomorrow's Mailsport.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

National Aquatic Centre - a danger waiting to happen.

We are excellent when it comes to building structures and hosting events - but we surely fail when it comes to maintaining it. 

The latest? well not really something new though.

The National Aquatic Centre needs a massive refurbishment. The toilets are moldy, trampoline torn, diving springboards are supported by rusty and corroded metal blocks (as seen in the pic above), staircase leading to diving platforms are rusty and the shower rooms are in utter shambles.

Simply put it is a danger waiting to happen.

Oh not to forget the warming up pool, used by divers, has been turned into a dumpsite (as seen below)

pic taken from The Malay Mail

Read more on the condition of the Aquatic Centre in today's Mailsport.

Well if you aren't bored and don't mind reading what has been previously reported then click on this.

Friday, April 13, 2012

First the players, now the umpires

It was Malaysian Hockey Federation general secretary Johari Abdul Aziz's first day in office.

pic(s) taken from the Malay Mail

What a start it was - no thanks to Tai Beng Hai's "Damning report on hockey team reveals shocking misdeeds" carried by The Star yesterday.

Similar report also surfaced on Malaysian Hockey.

A 'damage control' press conference was called by MHC, namely Johari, to clarify the matter and state what was actually meant by Beng Hai's report to the MHC council on Tuesday.

Basically MHC and Beng Hai insists Report (was) not reported holistically

While that materialised, to a certain extent, blame for Malaysia not qualifying for Olympics was then put on bad umpiring calls, lack of overseas exposure, and so on.

A video footage, which was part of his presentation to the MHC council, was then played with Beng Hai reasoning that there were bad calls.

Let's stop pointing fingers just accept that we have failed, which thankfully team manager George Koshy admitted towards the end of the press conference.

Read more on it in today's Mailsport.

I must credit Johari for his efforts to mitigate the matter today - keeping to his word and being more media friendly

"We have to admit we have problems. It's better if we are transparent while attending to matter instead of people quoting 'according to sources within MHC'."

I have to admit I have done that too, but only because parties were too afraid to step up or were under a gag order - same applies to rest of my fellow journalists, bloggers, etc.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Finally, Mike says his farewell.

The following is an email circulated to, i believe, members of Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) and copied to the press.

Titled "THANK YOU"

Dear All

I would like to personally thank everyone during my tenure as the General Manager and Secretary General of MHF & MHC since July 2009.

This has been a very difficult decision for me, but I feel it is appropriate choice for my future undertakings in term of career advancement and family. Please read below the milestones that were achieved during the tenure.

Thanking you again for all the support rendered.


JULY 2009 – MARCH 2012

These few years has left with invaluable lessons.

Some are painful and some are joyful. With this, MHF and MHC have achieved several vital milestones as stated below:-

Constitutional Changes

-     Amendments of six (6) Articles of the MHF Constitution namely:

o   Article 5             – Definitions

o   Article 12          – Congress and Congress Meetings

o   Article 14          – Management Committee

o   Article 15          – General Meetings

o   Article 16          – Duties of Principal Elected Office-Bearers

o   Article 17           – Committees

-          Spearheaded and facilitated the new MHC Constitution to be compliance with FIH Statutes.

-          Communicated and coordinated with FIH, AHF, OCM, MHF & MWHA to resolve the issue of compliance with FIH.

-          Prepared a detailed sequence of events and timeline for MHC since 2006 till as of today.

-          Dissolution of Malaysian Hockey Federation via EGM.

-          1st MHC Executive Board Meeting was convened successfully.


-     Organized two editions of 2010 and 2011 Sultan Azlan Cup in Ipoh, Perak.

-     Secured and facilitated Televisyen and Broadcasting Rights with Astro Arena for domestic competition.

-     Secured RM3million deal for Sultan Azlan Shah Cup (2010-2013).

-     Initiated and obtain approval from FIH to organize first Annual Under 21 Men’s Junior hockey tournament called Sultan of Johor Cup in 2011.

-     Remodeling two vital Domestic Events i.e. TNBMHL & Tun Abdul Razak.

-     Organized two (2) Inaugural Indoor Hockey Tournament i.e. National Indoor Championship and National Under-16.

-     Managed age-group events – Sukma, National Under 21, Under 16 and Under 14.

-     Reviewed and Increased Allowances for Tournament Officials.

-     Increased TNBMHL Prize Money by 30%.

-     Increased MJHL Prize Money by 80% and record breaking of 26 teams.

-     Increased Hosting Grant by 40% to RM35,000.

-     Secured TNB, 100Plus, QNet, Milo (Nestle) for events.

-     Rebrand with new logos for the events: TARC, MHL and MJHL.

-     Dedicated Website, Twitter and facebook were established.

-     Coordination and communication with Media on Press Conference and provide latest updates on the events.


-     Increased Hosting Grant by 40% to RM35,000.

-          Subsidy from RM3,000 to RM5,000 for each affiliate to participate.

-          Introduced Incentive Schemes for State Under-18 League for the Affiliates.

-          Organized a Tour to Dublin to support the Malaysian Hockey Team – total of 23 people.

-          Special scheme of Air-Ticket (50%) will be absorbed by MHC for Sabah & Sarawak to play in the National Under 14 and Under 16 event.

-          Administrative grant of RM10,000 for each Affiliates. Total payout of RM160,000 in 2011.

-          Regular emails are sent to keep all the Affiliates updated on the upcoming events and urgent matters.


-          Established a Strategic Planning for six years from 2010 till 2016 with objectives and targets to achieve by MHC.

-          Appointment of General Manager effective from August 2009.

-     Achieved “Grade A” Scale from Malaysia Sports Commissioner’s Office.

-     Attained 63.60% in the Annual OCM Rating Programme.

-     Facilitated Management, Council and General Meetings for the year 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012.

-     Streamlining Meetings and Reports with 2-year Calendar in placed.

-          Obtained four (4) cars and two (2) Multi-Purpose Vehicle on loan from Hyundai-Sime Darby Malaysia.

-          DRB-HICOM donated a motorcycle.

-          Skali Group established a website and to maintain it.

-          University of Stirling of Scotland has accredited MHC at 3.3 points which is above the requirement of 3.0 points. We were ranked third best NSA among 56 after BAM and SRAM.

-          Established twitter and facebook account.

-          Prepare speeches for Office Bearers for Meeting and events.


-          Solicited funds from the Government, Sponsors and well wishers to the tune of RM17.0 million.

-          Cleared the debts of RM1.4million.

-          Managed to send five (5) Coaches to attend FIH High Performance Coaching Course in the Hero Honda Hockey World Cup and Champions Trophy in Germany.

-          Undertaken MHF Level 1, 2 & 3.

-          Organized Workshop to review the syllabus of Level 1 & 2.

-          Communicated with NSI (Coaching Division) on the funding for the yearly courses.

-          Also assisted in the recent FIH-AHF DUC Workshop.

-          Conducted FIH-MHC High Performance Coaching Course in-conjunction with Sultan of Johor Cup 2011. About 20 person attended.

-          FIH-MHC Coaching Course Advance Level 3 (A) will be organized in May during the Sultan Azlan Cup 2012.

-          MHC won the Best Coaches category during the Anugerah Sukan Negara 2010.

-          Promoted several young Umpires and Umpires Managers at International arena.

-          A Strategic Plan was established on the KPI’s by MHCUB.

-          Organized Umpires and Umpires Managers’ Seminar in-conjunction with 19th Sultan Azlan Shah Cup 2010.

-          Also structured a National Hockey Umpires Theory Exam throughout the Nation.

-          Included and Umpire as part of Tour of the National Teams to provide exposure.

Women Hockey Association

-          Contributed RM125,000 to Malaysian Women Hockey Association

-          National Women Team participated in the 2010 Junior Hockey League.

-          Also included women coaches into the Coaching courses and women umpires to officiate in the domestic competition.

-          Review the allowance for the umpires and the officiating umpires get more than the reserve umpire.

-          Managed to secure our Malaysian Women team to participate in the Lanco International Super Series event as part of CHOGM.

National Teams – Senior, 2013 and 2017 squads
-          Current World Ranking at 13 in the world.

-          Won Silver Medal at 2010 Asian Games.

-          Won the best team award category at Anugerah Sukan Negara 2010.

-          Bronze Medal at the 1st Asian Champions Trophy in 2011.

-          Won the 1st Sultan of Johor Cup 2011.

-          Won the 2009 & 2011 SEA Cup.

-          Silver Medal in AHF Boys Under-18 event in 2009 & 2011.

-          Failed to qualify for 2012 London Olympic Games & 2010 World Cup.

-          Secured attire sponsorship - Kappa for National Team and Grays for National Junior Team (Project 2013).

-          A ray of hope is seen in the Project 2013 and National 16 boys’ performance.  Project 2013 did a good job by winning the 2009 SEA Cup gold for the country and became runners-up at the 2009 Under-18 Asia Cup tournament in Myanmar and 2011 in Singapore.  They also participated in the Razak Cup & Under 23 and became runners-up and third place respectively.

-          After four (4) years, the National Under-16 became runners-up after Germany and beating Holland and Belgium in the 4 Nations Mannheim event in Germany in the month of June 2010.

-          By looking at the current structure of the National Teams’, we shall have two (2) Junior World Cup Project Squad of 2013 & 2017 and it will be a feeder to the National Senior Team.

-          This detailed seven (7) years plan shall equip MHF to greater challenges and to attain first-rate results in the 2014 Asian Games & World Cup, and more importantly the 2016 Rio Olympics.

-          Established Code of Conduct for National players.

-          Established Bonus Structure for National teams’.

-          Streamline the biodata and international caps for the National teams’.

-          Contributed on yearly basis of RM300,000 to Malaysian Women Hockey Association for 1MAS woman program.

-          1Mas is a long term development initiative which has been conceived to produce a stream of players equipped for elite class, high performance hockey in a structured and coordinated program.

-          A standard national training curriculum, progress monitoring, reporting, overseas attachments for identified talent, specialist coaches based regionally and long term collaboration with successful foreign clubs are key features of this program.

-          The overall framework of this project will take Malaysia to a gold medal (1MAS) at the regional level (Asian Games) and will be the most developed age group hockey development scheme in Asia.

-          Secured RM11.0million from the GOM for the 1MAS Hoki program.

-          The Ministry of Education is doing its part to ensure that schools are doing the necessary things.

·           Nationwide Inter-District Training Centres or called as “PLD”.

·           14 Selected State Sports School

·           High Performance Sports School (“SPTS” program)

·           Supported by two dedicated National Sports School i.e. Bukit Jalil and Bandar Penawar.


During the three (3) years, I wish to express my heartfelt appreciation to the management and staff for their dedication and commitment to the MHF and MHC. My gratitude also goes to the Tuanku President, Government of Malaysia (GOM), Ministry of Youth and Sports, Ministry of Education, Olympic Council of Malaysia, International Hockey Federation (FIH), Asian Hockey Federation (AHF), National Sports Council (NSC), National Sports Institute, Task Force & Project Secretariat of “1MAS HOKI”, business associates such as Tenaga Nasional Berhad, Air Asia Berhad, F&N Beverages Marketing Sdn Bhd (100Plus), Nestle Malaysia Berhad (MILO), Astro ARENA, DRB Hicom, SKYBUS, Chilis, QNet, Hyundai, Reebok, Kappa & Grays for attire sponsorship for the Senior and 2013 team.

I must specifically mention Tuanku President, Government of Malaysia, NSC and NSI, as they have been a source of invaluable advice to me and are willing to consider various proposals for the success of Malaysian hockey.

Also, special appreciation to the Media members’ includes the bloggers’ who have been keeping us on our toes and provides a check and balance on the ideas and actions taken for the betterment of hockey in Malaysia.

Last but not least, I wish to extend my personal thanks to my fellow Office Bearers, Council members, Committee members, staff of MHC & Shahzan House for their continued support and contributions during my tenure since 2009.

“For greater heights of Malaysian hockey, we must strive together”.

Thanking you.

Maninderjit Singh (Mike)

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Sports School - there to make things harder?

That's the situation KL Hockey Association are facing.

KL Sports School, or previously known as SMK Seri Titiwangsa, are making life hard for KLHA to call-up their players for the upcoming national Under-16v tournament.

KLHA secretary V. Rajamanickam did raise some valid questions but who's going to answer them?

1. Why is it that KLSS insist that they must get a directive from the KL Schools Sports Unit before releasing players to the state association?

2. Isn't it puzzling that Bukit Jalil SS and Bandar Penawar SS, both under the ambit of the KL Schools Sports Unit, have released their players without a fuss but not KLSS?

3. Sports school are meant to provide players for States and Country, so why is there so much red tape?

4. Why are KLSS making KLHA go in a merry-go-around? - first they sighted transportation issues, then that order must come from Sports Unit, and now the players need to get parent's approval.

Read more on this in today's Mailsport here.

First it was how KL took the national schools meet for granted. Yes, whatever the circumstance, the district level and state SHOULD be held before sending a team to the Nationals.

There is no justice to the other schools, more importantly boys/girls playing hockey, that they don't have an opportunity to play at the Nationals on that particular year no matter how impressive they are.

If others States can do it, why not KL?

Perhaps it's time to review the Sports Schools system.

Monday, April 02, 2012

Sepang, to be just another race on the calendar?

Just look at the picture below - It was taken just five minutes before the Malaysia GP two weekends ago.

It wasn't like this last year... 

A SIC staff had commented that promotion to this year's race wasn't like in previous years. There was minimal adverts in the papers and the streets of KL did not have many banner, posters, etc along roads.

No wonder some I know didn't know Formula One was taking place that weekend. Indeed it wasn't avid F1 followers but in the past everyone knew it was a race weekend.

Also gone, are the airshows that used to thrill spectators - young and old - on Race Days.

Airshows may be an 'old' thing as some may say but who doesn't enjoy watching some acrobats up in the air, living dangerously as they put on a show?

The organisers and promoters should Bring back the hype, as appeared in 'From the SIDELINES' in today's Mailsport.

Something needs to be done, or else the Malaysia GP may become just another international event in Malaysia or worse still just another race on the F1 calendar.