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.

1. THT
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



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


Penang Juniors
KL Sukma
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.