Thursday, December 29, 2016

Exciting matches in knockout draw



There were several interesting match up's when the draw for the knockout tournament of the MHL was conducted today.


The 16 teams competing in the Premier and Division One leagues were placed in an open draw.


The plum tie must surely be the clash between KL Hockey Club and Tenaga Nasional Berhad.


KLHC are a traditional power house while TNB were the losing finalists of the inaugural knockout tournament this year.


Another interesting match up is between two league champions, Terengganu HT who won the Premier League and TNB Thunderbolts who lifted the Division One title.


UniKL is expected to have a tough time against fellow Premier League side Uitm who have been boosted by several players who used to don the Sapura jerseys in the past.


PDRM who are making a return to the MHL will take on Bukit Jalil Sports School while another all Division One tie will see Johor squaring up against SSTMI.


RMAF will play Petaling Jaya CC in another all Division One clash while Maybank play UPM.


All matches are slated for  Friday January 6.


With the unavailability of the KLHA and KPM Stadium to play night matches due to poor lighting, matches at these two venues will be played at 1600H and 1800H.





Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Hockey News Updates

Have not been writing of late Nor due to any fear of anyone except God.


Rather I lost my right eye through an infection on the right cornea that caused a scar on the cornea. This was the same eye I did a cornea transplant a year ago but rejection took place only part week.


Well another visit to the operation room in 2 weeks time, pocket permitting.


Back to Hockey news that matters, so will pen some updates that matter and are factual.


  1. Terengganu HT has withdrawn their team from Division zone of the MHL thus only 8 teams remain. Reasons for withdrawal unknown.


  1. Team managers meeting and fixtures of MHL will be released on December 29, as will the draw for the knockout tournament.


  1. Premier league matches will be played on Wednesday,Friday, Sunday's with Division One on Thursday and Saturday. Oddly Premier League on home and away but Division One will be played one round league.


  1. PDRM not allowed to field their employees who are national players , but employer ruling has been in place since League started in 1987. What will happen to 2 national players if PDRM decides not to release them for any other club? They are expected to commission out in early February.


  1. Will THT be fined for withdrawing after closing date? Regulations used to impose 3 year ban but no action was taken against THT women who are back this year after withdrawing lady tear after closing of entries.


  1. why were UITM allowed to join premier league without submitting the list of players to show they have the required standards to compete? THT was forced to do this many years ago.


  1. Tournament officials of last MHL yet to be paid their claims despite next league about to commence.


  1. KLHA stadium said to he not fit to accommodate night matches for the forthcoming MHL.


  1. When will national team train as World League is in March? A clarification is needed as preparation can be affected and team should be priority.


  1. Will there be any increase in prize money for the MHL? That was the promise that MHL will be re-branded and seen in a different light.


  1. Just how many matches of the MHL will be telecast live as Badminton has virtually all its league matches beamed live to our living rooms. There was a significant increase last season and we pray for more.


  1. With KLHA Stadium being used by at least 4 teams ( KLHC, UniKL, TNB and Thunderbolts) a meeting with City Hall should be initiated to improve the facilities at this venue.


  1. After 4 years the National Infoor Championships was held in Johor last weekend but there was hardly any publicity. Also missing were the two challenge trophies presented by Al Mahrum Sultan Azlan Shah named the Raja Ashman and Tengku Bainun trophy. ATM and Malacca won the event held in Ipoh in 2012 and even the outgoing FIH President was present. So where and we're the trophies not utilised?


We are all here to help the sport, to improve things, always ready to help if asked.


Unlike some who hold on to positions for fame and power yet hardly contribute.



Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Malaysia in to Junior World Cup


Malaysia invited to participate in the Uttar Pradesh Hockey Junior World Cup Men, Lucknow 2016 


Malaysia invited to participate in the Uttar Pradesh Hockey Junior World Cup Men, Lucknow 2016 


Malaysia invited to replace Pakistan


Pakistan’s invitation withdrawn after failure to meet deadlines


Action taken due to commitments to event partners

28 November 2016: Earlier today the International Hockey Federation (FIH) invited the Malaysian junior men’s team to take part in the Uttar Pradesh Hockey Junior World Cup Men, Lucknow 2016, being held in India from 8 to 18 December. The late invitation came after FIH had to officially withdraw Pakistan's invitation to the event.


Friday, November 25, 2016

Sapura out of MHL?

After 16 years of participation in the Malaysian Hockey League, Sapura has decided to stay out of the competition in 2017.


Sapura won the newly introduced knock out tournament this season and had an array of former and present internationals in their line up.


There was talk in the Hockey circles for the past week that Sapura might pull the plug on their participation in the MHL.


But it was eventually confirmed today, the day entries closed for the MHL.


" Sapura has withdrawn," was what MHC Competition Chairman and Deputy President said when contacted,


" MHC was informed of the decision of Sapura's withdrawal today," added Koshy.


The MHL had 6 teams in the Premier Division - KL Hockey Club, Tenaga Nasional Berhad, Terengganu Hockey Team, Maybank , UniKKL and Sapura.


The league was to commence in the first week of January.


However with Thunderbolts moving up from Division One, at least 6 teams will see participation in the top division.


The status of SSTMI which also was promoted but appealed to remain in Division One remains unclear as it was promotions was made mandatory and known to all teams at the start of last season.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

NSHA Honours Greats

Please assist by publishing this story

A total of 11 ex players and administrators will be inducted into the Negeri Sembilan Hockey Association Hall of Fame this Saturday.

This is the second consecutive year NSHA has honoured those who had served the state in Hockey following the inaugural event held last year.

Three Hockey stalwarts, namely Lawrence van Huizen, William Fidelis and Satwant Singh Dhaliwal were the Pioneer group that were honoured last year.

They will now be joined by 1975 World Cup players N. Palanisamy and Brian Sta Maria, the skipper of the 1977 Razak Cup winning squad Michael Yan, double international , Hockey and athletics, Savitri Ovinis, former NS Women Hockey Secretary Parkiam Lingam,  former coach Harbhajan Singh and umpire R. Subramaniam.

Also honoured  are three officials who have passed away - S. Satgunam who was the secretary of NSHA and MHF as well as double international  M. Joseph ( Hockey and Football) and  former goalkeepers coach and Olympian 
Peter van Huizen.

A match featuring ex players representing Palanisamy XI and Michael XI will be held at 4.30pm.

" This is our way or remembering and honouring those who served unselfishly towards the sport both for the country and state," said NSHA Vice President M. Gobinathan.

"We started this last year and hope to extend this further over the years to come.

" We need to revive the glory years of Negeri Hockey and what better way then to pick up pointers from these greats.

" Negri Hockey has a rich tradition and has produces players and officials that sent on to achieve great things for the sport."

Some 200 ex players and officials are expected to attend the event that will commence at 3pm at the Seremban 2 Hockey Stadium.

" It will also serve as a walk down memory lane for many and rekindle old friendships," added Gobi.

" Nothing can describe the looks on the faces of the stalwarts of Negri Hockey as they discuss their exploits on and on the Hockey pitch."

Gobi hoped that those who had served Negri would join the ceremony this Saturday to Honour those inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Those keen to join can contact NSHA Secretary P. Tamil Selvam at 019-365

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

National Under 14 Fixtures

Below are the fixtures of the national Under 14 that many had requested as it has yet to be made public via main stream media.









Thursday, October 20, 2016

MHL TO PROCEED AS PLANNED

The Malaysian Hockey League for the 2017 season will proceed as planned.


Earlier there were doubts that the league could be moved from its January to March window as the national team needs to prepare for the Round 2 if the World League at Trinidad & Tobago.


But Competitions Chairman George Koshy dispelled such fears.


" The men's Premier and First Division will proceed as planned," said Koshy.


" The women's league will commence after their Round 2 World League commitments in January.


" A meeting of all the team managers will be held to determine the exact dates."


With this it is anticipated that the Junior Hockey League will now be held only after the Raya, which means it will only start in July.


However some teams have voiced concerns as its too close to the SPM trial examinations.


The meeting with the team managers will be held this Saturday it was learnt but no confirmation was given.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Understanding FIH Ranking System

The Asian Champions Trophy awards continental ranking points, not world ranking points. 

Continental ranking points affect the world rankings indirectly: from these points, a continental ranking is compiled which then translates to a certain number of world ranking points (1st within Asia equals 750 points, 2nd equals 700 points etc.) 

The change mentioned happens within the continental ranking for Asia. This is currently calculated on the basis of the results of the Asian Games and Asia Cup only, but in the future will be calculated from four tournaments in a four-year cycle, i.e. Asian Games, Asia Cup and two Asian Champions Trophy tournaments

To understand better let's take a look at the present scenario.

Malaysia is currently ranked 14th in the world rankings, 4th in Asian rankings based on the 4th place at the last Asian Games.

The total points Malaysia currently has is 866.

Pakistan is at 13th position with 935, Japan at 16th with 678 and China at 18th with 551.

The other Asian teams are India in 6th position with 1681 points and Korea at 11th position with 1025 points.

After the Asian Champions Trophy, at the next listing of the world rankings in January 2017, changes will reflect the positions team finished at the Kuantan tournament.

Meaning if Malaysia emerges champions, they will earn a maximum of 750 continental ranking points and adding to their FIH tournament points of 326 makes it a total of  1026 points overall.

But hold your horses as other Asian Trans too gain from the points depending where they finish.

Hence it is vital to know where the Asian teams stand based on solely FIH ranking points to further comprehend the whole matter.

Let's remove the continental points and just look at the FIH points

India - 911
Korea - 375
Pakistan - 235
Malaysia - 326
Japan - 183
China - 101

The points offered at the Asian Champions Trophy are as follows

Champs - 750
Runner Up - 700
Third - 650
Fourth - 540
Fifth - 495
Sixth - 450

One must also bear in mind that teams that qualify for the FIH Champs Trophy will gain points later this year as well.

So really for Malaysia to improve its world rankings it needs to break into the World Cup and Olympics and finish in a reputable position to gain points.

If not we will be talking on our rankings day in and day out, languishing where we are currently for years to come.

And before one seeks to twist the facts, the 2018 World Cup in India will have 16 teams. So qualification really is no big deal but finishing in the ranking between 1-8 will change our standings drastically. 

Friday, September 16, 2016

Teja - A life devoted to sports and history



He was easily identified as he always used to wear white turban and pants.

Serious and stern looking on the exterior but a man with such humility, warm hearted and friendly is the best way to describe Master Teja Singh Dhaliwal who passed away in Malacca on Thursday.

The 79 years old suffered a heart Attack at his home and breathed his last at the Malacca General Hospital.

Teja had undergone a by-pass operation in May this year and really never recovered from it.

My early introduction to a man that I later on admired upon learning more about him was at the Malacca Sikh Temple where Teja volunteered his services, also serving as the Treasurer in 2009/2012 especially during the annual prayers for Sant Sohan Singh Ji.

During my playing days I used to wonder who this gentleman was, always donning white pants, trade marks of his umpiring of Hockey and Cricket playing days.

A history teacher at Malacca High School, Teja also represented Malacca in both Hockey and Cricket and went on to become a Hockey coach that help mound the careers of players like Tam Chiew Seng, Tan Kam Seng, K. Embaraj, Lim Chiow Chuan, Chin Boon Ghee, Wallace Tan, , Sewak Singh, Tam Chew Meng even dating back to the years of Dato Dr. Mahinder Singh.

The MHS Hockey team held for years the record of defeating the Gurney School 36-0 in a Malacca schools Hockey tournament.



Former international umpire V. Sasidharan had the privilege of playing under the tutelage of Teja in Cricket for the government services tournaments.

" His managerial and human relation skills is something that I always admired and still hold on to as he taught me a lot, " said Sasidharan.

Teja was also credited with teaching history classes with distinction, often opting for story telling to make it more interesting for his students.

MHS had the proud record of being the best school in terms of History grades in the Lower Certificate of Education and Senior Cambridge exams with over 80 per cent scoring distinction when Teja was there.

Teja is the elder Brother of former international Harnek Singh and Brother in law of former MHF Umpires Board Chairman Lt. Col (R) Narinder Singh.

Rest in peace Sir and may the gates of heaven welcome this great personality as he meets his maker.

Good bye Teja, you will be missed but we will all remember you with sweet memories.

Pls be inform Late Master Teja Singh funeral will be held on Saturday 17/9/16 @4pm.. Cottege leaves residence 5204 C Taman Muhibbah Klebang @3pm to Jelutong Crematorium

Thursday, September 8, 2016

UniKL Sim for 4 points



It will be a crucial weekend for UniKL in the Malaysian Hockey League.

They will be up against Tenaga Nasional Berhad on Friday and take on table toppers Sapura on Saturday.

UniKL need to gather at least four points in the two matches to keep alive their hopes of making the semi finals.

It is the match against TNB that coach Arul Selvaraj is hoping to collect all 3 points to boast their chances of a top four finish.

" It is crucial for us to win against the likes of TNB and Naybank to make it to the semis," said Arul ahead of their TNB match.

" These two teams are our rivals for the semis as we have to be realistic that the current three teams occupying the top three positions will be hard to match.

" TNB are on a high after making the final of the knock out tournament but at the sane time may be tired as well as they played in the weekday.

" Hence my instruction to the players is to get an early goal and that will be the key to success."

UniKL had defeated TNB 1-0 in the first round league match but were on the receiving end in the knockout tournament, going down 1-2 in the last eight match.

An area that is of concern to Arul is penalty corners as UniKL have been wasting theirs as evident in their last three matches, scoring only twice from 21 penalty corners,

TNB are in great form both in conversion and Defence in penalty corners as Syed Syafiq Choulan has been scoring while keeper S. Kumar has been in his torment in defending shots at goal.

But UniKL have been pathetic  in both  aspects and need to improve on this to have any chance of beating TNB.

Players like Najmi Farizal, Mohammad Tousiq and Baljit Singh need to Herut act right.

And Arul might just opt to change Irish keeper James Caragh who has let it soft penalty corner goals in their last three matches.

" I cannot emphasise the importance of the match against TNB as it will be a make or break for our season," added Arul.

" We need to improve several notches to get the result we desire and I have faith in my players to deliver the crucial points." 

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Daunting Task Awaits UniKL




Going into the lions den is an intimidating task for anyone.

Thus one can only understand how UniKL feel as they take on Terengganu Hockey Team at the Batu Buruk Hockey Stadium on Friday.

What is more surreal is the fact that they will face the defending champions again on Sunday at the Pantai Hockey Stadium, the start of the second round matches.

UniKL have suffered two successive defeats in the past week, losing 2-1 to Maybank in the league and 2-3 to Tenaga Nasional in the knockout.

And they are well aware that they need to be at the best to avoid a mauling against a resurgent THT side that finally seem to have found its winning ways after a rather indifferent start to the season.

" It will be very tough against THT as they are several classes above us," said UniKL coach Arul Selvaraj.

" Getting one point off them in the two matches can be considered a huge bonus to us.

" We will have to play smart and not open ourselves at the back as they have players who can punish us.

" It will be important for us to make full use of any penalty corners that we are awarded."

UniKL have been poor in the penalty corners as evident in their last three matches where they only managed 2 goals from the 18 penalty corners awarded.

And they also were punished when conceding penalty corners as against TNB they let in two soft penalty corner goals.

With Baljit Singh and Mohd Sufi Ismat Rohulmin back in the team, Arul has a full team to pick from.

" We are injury and suspension free so we need to lift ourselves from the two defeats and get a good result this weekend," said Arul.

" It is a vital weekend and we have told the players that a point from a possible six is what we are looking at as we have to be realistic."

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Heart break for UniKL



Failure to defend well cost UniKL a place in the semi final of the knockout tournament of the MHL as they went down 2-3 against Tenaga Nasional.

UniKL twice came back from a goal down but defensive frailties cost them the match.

And coach Arul Selvaraj was not at all happy with their performance.

" We were poor in Defence and missed the presence of Baljit Singh who was injured," said Arul.

" And it was our failure to take chances that put paid our hopes of progressing.

" Overalll it was a good performance by the younger players in both teams that showed composure and maturity.

"Though we lost but overall Malaysian Hockey won as the match was highly entertaining and the youngsters showed that they can play good Hockey."

In the first round match Tenaga Nasional defeated Uitm- KPT 11-0 while UniKL edged Maybank 1-0.

However in the league the two teams had contrasting fortunes over last weekend.

TNB held two giants, KLHC and THT to draws, 2-2 and 4-4 respectively.

But UniKL who held KLHC to a 1-1 draw succumbed to a 1-2 defeat against Maybank.

TNB were awarded a penalty corner in the 3rd minute and Syed Syafiq Choulan sent a drag flick that UniKL keeper James Caragh could only parry into goal to give TNB a 1-0 lead.

UniKL were awarded two penalty corners in the second quarter but poor push outs caused them to be wasted.

It was the same old story for UniKL in the first few minutes of the third quarter as another two penalty corners went begging.

Amir Farid should have given TNB a two goal lead in the 40th minute as he only had Caragh to beat in goal but failed to get the better of the Irish custodian.

Hafiz Zainol scored the equaliser in the 50th minute as his attempted cross was deflected past TNB keeper S.Kumar by his own defender Shazril Irwan.

But Nik Aiman put TNB ahead again in the 53rd minute when he hammered home from close range.

Skipper Najmi Farizal Jazlan made it all square for UniKL scoring off a penalty corner in the 55th minute.

TNB scored the winner in the 57th minute with Syed Safiq once again finding the mark off a penalty corner.

In other quarterfinal matches THT edged KLHC 3-2 while SSTMI defeated Politeknik KPT 3-0 in a shoot out after the match ended 1-1 in regulation time.

 

Saturday, August 27, 2016

UniKL ready for Maybank


Having managed to get a point off table toppers KL Hockey Club has boosted the confidence of the youngsters from UniKL.

It has been a good week for UniKL as they defeated Tenaga Nasional last Sunday and followed that up with a win over Maybank in the knockout tournament.

And the 1-1 draw against the vastly stronger KLHC side on Friday will no doubt spur the team to a better showing in the league match against Maybank at the Pantai Hockey Stadium tomorrow.

Despite having beaten Maybank 1-0 in the knock out tournament, UniKL are well aware that past results count for nothing.

" While we are happy with the results, we have our feet firmly on the ground," said UniKL coach Arul Selvaraj.

" Though we had beaten Maybank in a match last week, it is entirely a different proposition this time around.

" We need to be more clinical in a match and take the chances we create as at times we are guilty of wasting chances."

UniKL have no injury worries except for youngster Mohd Sufi Ismat Rohulmin who is still recovering from three stitches on his knee.

Maybank were beaten 2-1 by Sapura but were denied of an equaliser in the 51st minute as video replays showed that they had the ball in the net but were denied by the umpire.

It was the same case for KLHC who were denied a second goal in their match against UniKL as Harvinder Singh had got a touch of the ball in the semi circle but was denied a legitimate goal.

UniKL too were at the receiving end as in their match against Maybank, their opponents had 11 players on the field despite a player from each team being yellow carded. They got away without any penalty against them though it was agreed that the captain will be issued a green card for such infringements.

" I have told my players to play to the whistle but at the same time hope that the Technical Committee has a serious look at some decisions ," added Arul.

UniKL hold mighty KLHC



UniKL created an upset of sorts when they held table toppers KL Hockey Club to a 1-1 draw at the Pantai Hockey Stadium.

It was the fighting spirit of the young UniKL side that saw them be the first team to take a point of the KLHC team that were expected to steam roll past them.

KLHC had won both their opening weekend matches, defeating Terengganu HT 2-1 and Sapura 5-2 while UniKL were beaten 3-0 by Sapura before bouncing back to edge Tenaga Nasional Berhad 1-0.

" I must say the boys showed tremendous spirit and were not daunted by the fact that they were up against a formidable side," said UniKL coach Arul Selvaraj.

" We absorbed the pressure well and slowed down the pace in the initial three quarters to break their rhythm.

" To us the draw is as good as a win and I hope that this match will give confidence to the players to start believing in themselves."

KLHC forced the first penalty corner of the match in the 3rd minute and Korean import Nam Hyun Woo sent in a Low drag flick that beat UniKL custodian , James Caragh all the way.

UniKL were on the back foot for the entire first quarter as they failed to make much headway.

It was a much changed UniKL approach in the second half as they managed to reign control of the midfield but did not create any goal worthy chances.

KLHC had two more penalty corners but Meor Mohammad failed to stop cleanly from one while Ahmad Kazamirul sent the other attempt wide.

Off their second penalty corner in the 50th minute UniKL found their equaliser as Mohammad Tousiq sent in a deft drag flick after being set up by Najmi Farizal from a delightful set-piece.

The goal gave confidence to the UniKL players as they help the marauding KLHC players at bay.

In the final minute KLHC were awarded a penalty corner but keeper Caragh pulled off a brilliant save to deny them all three points.

In another match Sapura defeated Maybank 2-1 at the Bukit Serindit Hockey Stadium in Malacca.

And TNB held defending champions Terengganu HT to a 4-4 draw.



Thursday, August 25, 2016

MHL from Jan- March! At the expense of national team!

It was announced last month that the Malaysian Hockey League will be held between January and March for the next three years.

This was done supposedly to give teams ample notice to prepare for the MHL as in the past the dates were never fixed.

As a result the MHL ended up being a tournament that was run for 6 to 8 weeks despite it being the premier Hockey tournament in the country.

However the grand plan may have already hit a snag as obviously no one took into account the FIH calendar when making the decision and announcement

This is because the World League round 2, which Malaysia will play in, is scheduled from March 25 to April 2 at Tunapuna , in Trinidad & Tobago.

Four teams have already been identified - hosts Trinidad & Tobago, Russia, Japan and Malaysia.

And just to jolt the memories of some, Trinidad & Tobago defeated us at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

For those who may not realise the significance and importance of world rankings, teams in the 1-11 bracket move into the semi final stages of the World League directly without playing Round 2.

There will be three Round 2 World Leagues with the first 3 in each tournament moving to the semi final of the World League.

So now we have the MHL from January to March, or it was assumed to be, when will the national team prepare itself?

Also with the women's team involved in the World League from 14-22 January, there is no possibility of the Women's National League being held earlier as well.

The teams competing in the Round 2 of the Women World League are Fiji, Ireland, Italy, Kazakstan, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia and a yet to be confirmed country.

Another issue that arises is the fate of the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup which traditionally is held in the first 15 days in April.

This obviously has to be moved to May, thus putting another spanner in the works when it comes to determining dates for the MHL next year.

With the World League semis slated for June ( only one venue identified thus 
far , London from 15-25 June) the MHL will once again be moved.

In August is the SEA Games and from October 21 to 29, the 8th Asia Cup will be held, which is the final opportunity to seal a place in the 2018 World Cup.

Effectively the national team has a packed schedule from January till October, assuming we qualify from the Round 2 of the World League.

Failure to make the semis means a last shot of making the 2018 World Cup via the Asia Cup.

Since there are so many experts that rubbish rd this blogs suggestion to hold the MHL from November this year till January next year, it will be interesting to see the stop  gap measures being put in place to hold the MHL longer then the 6-8 week period that has been the case for the past few years.

A point will do for UniKL



Riding on two wins last weekend, UniKL are hoping for a positive outing against Giants KL Hockey Club in the Malaysian Hockey League Premier Division.

UniKL edged Tenaga Nasional Berhad in the league last Sunday and on Tuesday beat Maybank also 1-0 in the knockout tournament.

However they lost their opening match 0-3 to Sapura.

On the other hand, traditional power house KLHC got off to a rousing start by defeating defending league champions Terengganu Hockey Team 2-1 in their opening match before trashing Sapura 5-2.

Therefore UniKL are  bracing themselves for a harrowing outing against KLHC who look to be stronger this year despite not having the likes of Razie Rahim and Nabil Fiqri Mohd Nor.

And this game will have extra edge as two players from UniKL, Meor Mohammad and Haziq Shamsul crossed over to KLHC just a month before the MHL began.

" There is no doubt that KLHC are the favourites to win this match and getting even a point off them can be considered a victory of sorts," said UniKL coach Arul Selvaraj.

"We need to be tight at the back and pack the midfield as they have quality players that can capitalise on half a chance.

" And then there is also the penalty corners that we need to avoid conceding as KLHC are deadly in this area."

UniKL have been relying a good tactical play to overcome their more Davies opponents thus far.

In players like Baljit Singh, Mohd Tousiq, Najmi Farizal, they have players that can spur the others to raise their game. 

" We need to focus on our game and not pay to much attention to any particular player in KLHC," added Arul.

"The first two quarters are important as we should not concede goals and that will hopefully add pressure on them.

" Realistically we have nothing to lose but everything to gain from this match."

And with that optimism Arul hopes his charges to rise to the occasion and give KLHC a run for their money. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

UniKL in last eight




UniKL qualified for the quarterfinals of the MHL Knock out tournament after edging Maybank 1-0 at the Pantai Hockey Stadium.

The solitary strike came off a penalty corner converted by Najmi Farizal in the 11th minute.

Maybank had their chances, even hitting the post once but failed to find the equaliser.

It was a good win for UniKL who were not given much of a chance to progress.

" The players did well though in terms of performance I would say there was a dip," said UniKL coach Arul Selvaraj.

" But that was understandable as we played a league match on Sunday and the players felt they had lead in their legs,

" Nonetheless I am happy with the outcome as we now wait for the draw."

The draw is expected to take place only on Saturday, giving teams very little time to prepare for the last eight opponents.

In other matches Sapura defeated Nur Insafi 4-0, Tenaga Nasional Berhad defeated UTM-KPT 11-0, ATM Airod won on 4-3 shoot out against Ipoh City Hall after match ended 3-3,  SSTMI defeated BJSS 7-0 while Politeknik Malaysia edged TNB Thunderbolt 3-2.


UniKL edge TNB



UniKL edged Tenaga Nasional Berhad 1-0 to register their first win in the Malaysian Hockey League at the Pantai Hockey Stadium.

Both teams had lost their opening matches, UniKL 0-3 to Sapura while TNB were edged 3-4 by Maybank.

The win by UniKL was well deserved as they managed to hold back the TNB strike force for three quarters before delivering a killer blow five minutes from time.

In other matches today, KLHC trashed pre tournament favourites Sapura 5-2 while Terengganu Hockey Team hammered Maybank 5-1.

Both teams played rather cautiously in the opening two quarters and hardly made any noteworthy attempts at goal.

It was scoreless at halftime.

TNB were awarded the first penalty corner of the match in the 52nd minute but Shazril Izwan failed to find the mark.

UniKL adapted a more attacking  style and were rewarded as Ashran Hamsani sent a reverse hit that had TNB keeper S.Kumar beaten all the way in the 55th minute.

TNB were awarded another penalty corner a minute from time but failed to capitalise.

" We played a tight game at the back as we were aware they had fast forwards and tried to limit their movement," said UniKL coach Arul Selvaraj.

" In the final quarter I told the players to play more attacking and we were duly rewarded.

" It was a tough match and the three points are a welcome relief after the opening defeat."

UniKL off to a bad start



UniKL put up a gallant performance against tournament favourites Sapura before going down 3-0 at the Tun Razak Stadium in their opening match of the Malaysian Hockey League.

It was a good performance from the young and inexperienced side as they held their own against their fancied opponents and really should have taken their chances.

However the overall performance was commendable and the UniKL side should be able to improve as the league progresses.

Although they lost, UniKL coach Arul Selvaraj praised his players for putting up a commendable performance.

" Considering that this was  our first match, the players displayed good technical skills and we need to work on the team work," said Arul.

" Finishing is another are we need to improve upon and one must be mindful of the fact that Sapura are the favourites for the league title.

" Though we did not take one pint off this match, I believe this serves as a perfect platform for improving in our coming matches. 

Sapura opened scoring in the  3rd minute via Faridzul Afiq Mohd. And in 10th minute Izad Hakimi scored off a penalty corner to make it 2-0.

Mohd Azrul Hasbullah made it 3-0 in the 49th minute.

In other matches, KL Hockey Club defeated fancied Terengganu Hockey Team 2-1 at Kuala Terengganu while at the KLHA Stadium in Pantai, Maybank edged TNB  4-3.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Why have rules?

For any foreign player to be eligible to play in the Malaysian Hockey League , they need to produce a Non Objection Certificate from their national Hockey association,

This is the requirement of the International Hockey Federation and not some local regulation. This has always been the case since the MHL commence in 1987 and this rule is etched in stone.

Therefore the furore of a player from India Gurbaj Singh now is the subject of interest as the registration of players for the MHL closed last month, when the teams were given a one week extension to formalise their signings.

The final list of players was then circulated by the MHC upon the closing of registration and everyone assumed that the 23 foreign players had their non objection certificates as per the rule.

Let's get one thing clear - if there was no clearance from the home country of the player, then he cannot be registered to play in the MHL.

Now the question is was the release letter in lay mans terms attached to the registration in the first place?

If there was none then the player did not meet the regulations and should not have been registered.

There is no such thing as register first and letter to follow as that document is akin to the international transfer certificate in Football.

MHC has now clarified that there some foreign players who did not attach the release letter from their home nation.

And MHC further stated that these clubs are now given until 24 hours before their first match to provide the no objection certificate failing which the player cannot play or be replaced.

So why have a registration date in the first place? Why have rules when some can change them to suit others? Was it a level playing field as some clubs fulfilled the requirement while two clubs did not? Will the rule be further extended to allow the other clubs to search for quality players?

The questions linger on but importantly the rule was not followed, period.

Put aside the issue of Hockey India and their grouses, what we want to know is why regulations are not enforced or was there a slip shod manner of registration?

Those who neglected their duties should be punished and if clubs cannot adhere to rules after 29 years of the MHL in existence, then really they have no business playing in the MHL.

Rather then address the matter, the fire fighting trained its hoses on a non issue, but all forget that we need to have rules and to adhere to rules, the same way we expect others. 

Expect more bending to come.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Manjit conferred Datoship



The Johor Hockey Association will organise several courses and seminars in conjunction with the 6th Sultan of Johor Cup.

The annual age group tournament will be held from October 31 till November 6 at the Taman Daya Hockey Stadium.

It has attracted the participation of Australia, New Zealand, Pakistan, Japan, England and Malaysia.

The courses and seminars to be held in conjunction with the tournament are Technical Officials, Umpires  and Coaching,  

One significant difference this year would be that the courses/seminars will only be for those from Johor.

" We want to give our officials a chance to improve themselves and learn new things in all these three aspects!" Said JHA Deputy President Manjit Majid Abdullah.

" We hope to get some good Instructors both locally and internationally to provide in depth knowledge to those attending the seminars or courses.

" At the same time we will seek the assistance of the countries participating to allow their coaches to spare done time in lectures or practical training for our coaches.

" This will no doubt benefit the development of Hockey in the state."

Having served Malaysian Hockey for almost four decades, Manjit  Majid Abdullah was conferred the prestigious Darjah Indera Mahkota Pahang (DIMP) by His Royal Highness Sultan Ahmad Shah today.

The award conferred carries the title Dato and it was a fitting tribute to a man who has served sports unselfishly.

A keen sportsman, with Hockey as his passion and now Golf as his Favourite past time, Dato Manjit provides valuable advice to HRH Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah, the Crown Prince of Pahang who has Manjit as his Sports Advisor.



Sunday, July 17, 2016

What Increase







As promised this blog will now share its thoughts with regards to the so called hefty increase in prize money for the MHL.

The media reports stated that the Malaysia Hockey League will see a hefty increase in prize money.

It was reported that the increase was in the region of RM139,000 (from RM514,000 in 2015 to RM 653,000).

This is indeed laughable after taking a serious look at the complete figures and comparing them to last years.

What was not clearly stated is that RM102,000 is the prize money for the newly introduced knockout competition. 

A so called new tournament does not mean an increase but a new tournament.

Once you take away that amount, then the increase is only RM37,000.

However of that amount a total of RM33,000 is the increase for the ladies category.  And mind you there is a 50 per cent decrease in the participation of the women's league as last year there were 11 teams while there are only 6 this time around.

So in actual fact the increase for Division One and Premier Division amounts to RM 4,000.

Wow, what a hefty increase indeed!

There was another omission that was not stated. 

Last year the fourth place team for the TNB cup was reported to have received RM30,000.
Now that is not reflected in the figures given out by the competitions committee (see attachment).

This year the fourth placed teams do not receive any prize money. 

And for the special awards, such as the best player and top goal keeper who are given RM1,000 is also removed.

So basically what increase are they talking about?

The two attachments speak volumes. 

All the competitions committee needed to do was to say that there is a new tournament and what the prize money is worth?

One wonders what really goes through the minds of these so called officials. 

Please call a spade a spade.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Strange Decisions

As predicted by this blog, the closing date for registration of players for the MHL has been extended to next Friday.

Not surprising given the lax of enforcement of regulations by the parent body.

But there is another interesting topi or rather topics to talk about.

Firstly its with regards to the "new" tournament introduced for the teams in Premier and First Division.

If it is a "new" tournament then on what basis were two teams KL Hockey Club and Terengganu HT given byes for the first round?

If the decision was based on the fact that they were the the two teams who dominated the tournament last year, my answer is simple , this is a new tournament and as such it should be an open draw for all 14 teams and no such thing as giving these two teams byes.

A clear case of not engaging in the rules of fair play,

Next we talk about the so-called punitive action with regards to imposing fines on players who abuse umpires or match officials.

Once again this is an ambiguous regulation that gives rise to being abused.

Once again take a look at Football, there is a list of disciplinary actions taken for Offences committees that include suspension and fines.

It sick early spelt out in Football and it's called the disciplinary code and must be approved by the Executive Board, not by a Competitions Committee that comprises of those who lack knowledge about the game.

Then we come to the decision of the period MHL will be held for the next 4 years, boldly saying that it will be from January to March for the next four year period.

Firstly the notion that w can entice players from foreign countries is downright rubbish as we will be competing against the Hockey India League that runs from Mid January to Mid February.

And what about the national team preparation for the Azlan Shah Cup that is held annually in late March or early April? But then again who cares as the sanction fee can cover everything right!

Then the decision to move the MJHL to the middle of the year is another flawed decision as most teams in the MJHL are school teams or players who are still schooling. This means the MJHL starts in June and ends in August, and which parent will allow his exam bound child to play the sport with exams barely two months later?

The MJHL has been slotted in the early part of the year since 1995 due to the schooling issue. But who cares about development when it's the interest of the six teams that is of paramount importance then development of younger players!

I will save my comments with regards to the fixtures, prize money and other matters for tomorrow as I am having a good laugh over these intellectual decisions made by those with an agenda.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Faizal back in contention

Breaking News

Faizal Saari will take his first step towards regaining his place in the national Hockey squad this Tuesday.

The 24 year old Terengganu Hockey Team player will report for training as an attachment player with the National Development Squad under the tutelage of Erling Wallace Tan.

This was confirmed by THT coach Sarjit Singh who said that Faizal will report Tuesday as the Terengganu Razak Cup winning side had a function on Monday night hosted by the Menteri Besar in Kuala Terengganu.

" Yes , Faizal has been notified and he will be at training on Tuesday," said Sarjit when contacted.

" I believe that he will use this opportunity to regain his place in the senior national squad."

Faizal was provisionally barred from the national side after his failure to turn up for camp in November last year.

The ban was over on June 20 and at the Razak Cup in May, Faizal emerged the leading goal scorer.

For MHC Vice President and Coaching Chairman Dato Ow Soon Kooi, the inclusion of Faizal into the Development Squad on attachment is part of the process implemented by the national body.

" I hope he values the opportunity and shows commitment towards the national cause. There should be a sense of pride as well as desire in wanting to represent the country," said Ow when asked to comment on the inclusion of Faizal.

THT are also zeroing in on securing the services of four Korean players have secured the services of one Argentinean , Pablo Xavier who was a member of the squad last season and Pakistani skipper Mohammad Irfan who played for Maybank last year, for the MHL which starts on August 18.

" We are in contact with the Koreans and we hope to make a trip there within these few days to finalise the signing  of players for THT," said Sarjit.

" We have got the names of the four players who cone highly recommended by their coach Paul Lissek."

The THT team played their Sukma squad over 3 days to help prepare the youngsters for the games.

With Firhan Ashaari moving to Sapura, THT were quick to sign up Jiwa Mohan, Baljit Singh and Harneet Singh to bolster the squad.

With the likes of former international Shahrun Nabil, Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin , Ismail Abu and Azlan Mison coupled with current internationals Fitri Saari and Mohd Hafizuddin in goal, the East Coast side can be looked upon as early favourites to retain their crown.

 

Pantai Stadium the focal point

With the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil closed for upgrading works in preparation for the 2017 SEA Games, teams participating in the Malaysian Hockey League have been scampering to look for alternative venues.

While some had initially considered outstation venues, in the end only Maybank seem to have opted to play their matches outside Klang Valley.

The Tigers, coached by former international Saiful Azli Abdul Rahman have proposed to play their matches at the MPMBB Stadium in Bukit Serindit Malacca.

Big spending Sapura have picked the costly Tun Razak Stadium as their home ground.

Three teams KL Hockey Club, Tensga Nasional Berhad and UniKL will use the KLHA Stadium in Pantai.

And defending double champions Terengganu Hockey Team will play their home matches in Kuala Terengganu.

Earlier there were indications that KLHC would opt for Ipoh while UniKL were considering Kuantan while Sapura were heading to Seremban.

With 3 teams at Pantai, Hockey fans can look forward to some quality weekends in Klang Valley.

The Division One is expected to commence on Aug 5 with the Premier Division on August 18.

The fixtures will be released at the team managers meeting this Saturday at the National Hockey Stadium Bukit Jalil when the registration of players closes. 

Saturday, July 9, 2016

New coaches set to debut in MHL

A new breed of coaches are set to take over the stage in the forthcoming Malaysian Hockey League.

Largely due to the fact that the MHC Coaching Chairman Dato Ow Soon Kooi setting clear definitions on the roles of the list of the ' Magnificent Seven", this has opened the opportunity for other coaches to be given a chance to prove their worth.

The seven coaches barred from being involved in any capacity in the MHL for clubs are Stephen van Huizen, Lim Chiow Chuan, Tai Beng Hai, K. Dharmaraj, K. Gobinathan, Lailin Abu Hassan and Erling Wallace Tan.

" The ruling to bar these coaches was a collective decision and the coaches were informed in January," said Ow who is also MHC Vice President.

" We have reiterated this to them and hope they adhere to the regulations.

"It is good that other coaches are given a chance to handle MHL teams and it will give us a bigger pool in the future."

Stephen and Beng Hai handled Sapura and the task is now taken over by Yahya Atan.

As for KLHC, the absence of Dharma and Lim has given Singaporean Harun Radhid to handle the team after being assistant a couple of years ago.

As for TNB, it is believed that they will name Mohd Amin Rahim and M. Kaliswaran to handle their team.

Those who had handled TNB before were Nor Saiful Zaini Nasiruddin and Lailin Abu Hassan.

Maybank has topped in Saiful Azli Abdul Rahman who will be assisted by Zam Zam, Chairil Anwar Abdul Aziz and Azrul Effendy Bustaman.

The appointment of Saiful Azli who has a contract with Brunei HA will give him the added experience to help hockey develop in the sultanate.

Maybank used to be handled by Wallace Tan and S. Vellapan in the past.

As for UniKL they have retained Arul Selvaraj while Terengganu HT has Sarjit Singh at the helm.

While it is good to see new coaches taking over the mantle, there is also a fear that there could be proxy coaches put in place with the strings being pulled by others in the stands.

There is also concern that while these seven are barred, others on the MHC payroll are allowed to coach or play in the MHL.

Perhaps it will be better to tighten the rules next year and provide a leeway.

The rule can be widened to all those employed by MHC or a loosening of the rule to allow them to coach but they will not get paid by MHC for the duration of the MHL.



Thursday, July 7, 2016

Miss you Mum

3 years ago on July 7 at 10.04pm I lost my beloved Mum. It was God's will that she left us on this fateful day. Not a day passes by in my life without thinking of her, the sacrifices she underwent, the pain and despair, the challenges she faced in bringing us up. I am today what I am because of my Mother. The most important lesson I learnt from her was that money is not everything, for one has to live by his/her principles. As a family we struggled in the early Daud but Mum was a strong willed person, always with a smile and never to show her weakness even when the going was tough. As a Son I did what I could for her but even till know I believe I did not do enough. The past 3 years has been tough on my, physically and emotionally. But Mum with you in Heaven I believe you are now happy and await the day you will reunite with me. I have several more tests that God has given me to undergo, the most important being caring for Dad. It is difficult alone as most days I cry myself to sleep, waking up at odd hours, the pain from dialysis on alternate days makes it difficult to pass a night with proper sleep. As I mark your day of passing today, I reflect on the good times I had with you Num for I miss you more then anything in this world. Look after her God please till I come to be with her.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Penny wise pound foolish

Imposing sanction fees on the hosts of the Sultan Johor Cup and Sultan Azlan Shah Cup's was most likely done without taking into consideration several factors that could lead those imposing the fees to actually fork out more from their pockets.

It is no secret that the hosts always provide the best facilities to the Malaysian teams, with at times even hosting them a week before the tournament.

The Malaysian team is always accorded the best privileges, right from choice of training times, food and accommodation beyond that stipulated for participating teams as well as holding various meetings and seminars that benefit the sports in the country.

Let's just list down an example of what extra costs the national team will have to fork out should they decide to head for the respective venues a week prior to the tournament. This is based on the fact that hospitality by the hosts is limited to 2 days prior and 1 day after the tournament and usually is for 22 persons per team.

Training sessions - USD 120 per session X 14 - USD 1,440

Transport - USD 100 per trip X 14 trips - USD1,400

Hotel and Food - USD 65 per head X 30 pac X 7 days - USD13, 650

Extra Rooms During Tournament - USD65 per head X 6 persons X 10 days - USD 3,900

Total - USD 20,390

One must remember that the foreign teams fork out all extra costs when arriving early and the hosts could well be within their rights to withdraw any extra privileges with the imposition of the sanction fee.

Imagine if the said amount is to be paid out whereas the sanction fee is only USD5,000 and USD 10,000 respectively.

One must also question why sanction fees must be imposed in the first place. Are there several factors that are not being made public for imposing the sanction fees when the International Hockey Federation, the legitimate sanctioning body does not seem it fit to do so?

Thus it will be better for the parent body to engage in discussions rather then impose fees that in the end could be seen as penny wise pound foolish.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

The Slow Death of MHL

The MHL will just be another competition held to complete the annual calendar.

This is the assumption that can be made after entries closed on July 1 for the 2016 edition.

And this reflects the sad state of affairs of the sport as its premier tournament has been reduced to just another Hockey event held annually.

Much was promised by the new administration but in the end these numbers do not lie.

Premier:
1. THT
2. KLHC
3. Sapura
4. Maybank
5. TNB
6. UniKL

Div 1.
1. Nur Insafi *
2. UiTM ^
3. ATM Airod*
4. TNB Thunderbolts *
5. BJSS *
6. SSTMI *
7. Majlis Bandaraya Ipoh ^
8. Politeknik Malaysia

Missing

MSNT/PHT
Masum/USM
MSP/YP/SSP
UniKL
PKS/KPM

Women:
1. Blue Warriors (PDRM)*
2. PKS-Uniten-KPT *
3. ATM Pernama *
4. SSTMI *
5. Politeknik Malaysia *
6. THT *

Missing

Penang Juniors
KL Sukma
Manjong
MSN Kedah
SSTMI Thunderbolts
Uitm Lions

While the problems of the Premier League continues, the dwindling figures of teams in the Division One and the Women's League is a cause of concern.

The very fact that many states are not represented in the MHL shows that there is no progress or development of the sport, no matter what the leadership may claim. The numbers reflect that and before they go on saying the quality over quantity one just need to look at the number of teams from states to see that all is not rosy.

The so called elite club of the Premier League will one day see a natural death as rules continue to be ignored.

Promotion and demotion has been part of the MHL since 1990 when the two division format was introduced and it's just that far too many ignorance  of rules has taken place to see this not implemented.

Well looking at it one will say it suits the calendar well as more teams means the dates will have to be extended and this was something those in charge did not want.