Tuesday, December 28, 2010


After the Sukom 98 fiasco, we thought that it was the end of companies being formed to organize sports events in the country, as the accounts have yet to be closed.

But we were wrong, and although there is no conclusive evidence of any foul play of yet, another such an incident has resurfaced, where no accounts have been presented.

Let’s trace this back to 2009, and it was the first trans-border Junior Hockey World Cup to be organized, by Malaysia and Singapore.

In order to facilitate the organization, the International Hockey Federation required a joint Organising Committee, hence a private limited company was set-up under the auspices of the Malaysian Hockey Confederation and Singapore Hockey Federation.

And no prizes for guessing just who was given the task of forming this company with SHF, yes the one and only – the Deputy President.

Now the Junior Word Cup has come and gone, almost 18 months have since passed yet no accounts for the JWC have been tabled at any of the meetings of MHF or MHC. An attempt was made though in July 2009, but the then Secretary of Johor HA had attempted to present the accounts to MHF without any approval from his state body.

Now it gets more interesting as checks and conversations with officials involved in the JWC, from both sides of the causeway revealed that the said company has been dissolved and accounts closed. That is the plus factor but why have the accounts not been tabled at the MHC meetings nor the MHF council been informed about the profit or loss. Mind you the main sponsors forked out Singapore Dollars 250,000 for the JWC.

So lets see some transparency here Deputy President. I am sure the accounts are “clean” and we made no profit whatsoever from the JWC. So why the delay or refusal to table the report ?

Monday, December 27, 2010


The Director General of the National Sports Council, Dato Zolkples Embong is a man under pressure these days.

Not only does he has to face a brunt of attacks from the former NSC DG Dato Wira Mazlan Ahmad, who hardly bites his tongue in his relentless attacks on the policies adopted by the NSC and KBS, but Dato Zolkples is trying hard to justify budget cuts for the National Sports Associations.

This blog will attempt to clarify certain issues that have been raised of late, with regards to the amendments to the Sports Act. Stay tuned...

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


The dearth of capable young officials coming through the rank renders the proposal of limiting the term of office for leaders of national sports associations unacceptable at the present moment.

In voicing their views against the proposal by ex National Sports Council; Director General Dato Mazlan Ahmad who said that terms of office should be limited to two Olympic cycles, Olympic Council of Malaysia President Tunku Tan Sri Imran Tuanku Jaafar and current NSC DG Dato Zolkples Embong, concurred with each other that the call was unwarranted.

"At the last OCM annual general meeting that was a resolution to invoke a age limit of 70 for office bearers but we deliberated over it and found that it was not feasible given our current situation where there are so few who want to do volunteer work," said Imran when met at the launch of the 1Mas Development Program at Tun Razak Stadium.

"It is not easy to entice the younger generation to do volunteer work and besides we find no problem with those holding posts for longer terms as most of them, if not all are doing a great service to their sports.

"I think the proposal is not feasible at the moment and we should not look at this as means to better our sports."

In echoing the remark by Imran, the NSC DG said that this idea was first mooted when the Sports act was being formulated in 1996 and even then it was deliberated at length, with Mazlan as the serving DG.

"It is not a new idea as it was discussed in 1996 and it was found to be not feasible for our country. We find it difficult to replace leaders," said Zolkples.

"Take for example boxing and women's hockey. Both their presidents have voiced their intention to step down but cannot find suitable replacements."

Sunday, December 12, 2010


Team Lotus will now stick with its green and yellow colours for 2011 after chief Tony Fernandes said it would be 'ludicrous' for his squad to run in the same paint scheme as the rebranded Lotus Renault outfit.

In the wake of the announcement this week that Lotus Cars was buying a stake in the Renault team and becoming its title sponsor, there had been fears that confusion could be caused by both the Enstone outfit and Team Lotus racing with the same black and gold colours for next year.

However, although Fernandes remains steadfast that he will stick with the Team Lotus moniker, he thinks it better for his outfit to stick with the famous green and yellow brand that it used this season rather than see through his original plans to run in black and gold.

Speaking exclusively to AUTOSPORT for the first time since the Lotus/Renault announcement, Fernandes said: "I have no problem that there will be two Lotuses on the grid. But I do think it would be ludicrous if we are both black and gold, and I can inform you that we will be changing our plans for the colour scheme.

"We declared that we were going to run in black and gold, and I'm not going to be childish to say we were first with our plans, so we will do it whatever. They have painted their car black and gold, they have made their intentions clear on that front, so be it.

"But every cloud has a silver lining, and I received some messages from people suggesting that by being black and gold we would be promoting a cigarette company. I wasn't actually aware that JPS [John Player Special] was still being sold in the United Kingdom and various parts of the Commonwealth. So did I need that controversy? No.

"And after yesterday's announcement by the FIA about the new engine plans for 2013, which means F1 is going green - so what better colour to be than green? So, we have been testing our fans' reactions and many have come back to us to say we should stay green and yellow. So, I am 99 per cent sure that we will be green and yellow."

Fernandes has expressed some frustration that Lotus has decided to team up with Renault, rather than throw its weight behind Team Lotus.

Speaking about the Lotus Cars decision, Fernandes said: "My first reaction is obviously disappointment. We were originally given a mandate for five years to go and develop a Formula 1 team.

"There are comments that have emerged in the Malaysian press that Proton was disappointed with our performance, which is one of the reasons that they gave up. I don't know how anyone in their right mind could expect us to be competing in the top half of the grid, or even up in the bottom half of the grid, last year - having just been given an entry in September.

"I stand by the fact that I think we did very well in the year and I think that 99 per cent of the paddock would agree considering where we came from. We built a classy team - a team that could do pitstops in the same time as Ferrari. We looked good, we had a good motorhome and performed well on the track with two good drivers.

"We were the best of the new teams. We had two good drivers and Heikki Kovalainen said he had the greatest season he has had in F1 – which is great testament from a guy who has driven for McLaren and Renault. So I am a bit disappointed that we did not get a chance [from Proton/Group Lotus]."

He added: "Logically I think we could have built a great brand together. I think this year if anyone says that we didn't help Lotus then I think they are mad, because we have helped them. And the reaction from the public is very strongly in support of us. So I think given time we would have built something good, and the perfect scenario for me would have been a merger of the two with one ambition."

Fernandes has said that he will push on with legal moves to get a clarification on the Lotus name situation in the courts, and said he has been hugely encouraged by messages of support from fans.

"You cannot win people overnight," he said. "This support we have got has been built up over a year.

"As I always say, things take time and things have to be done properly. You cannot parachute yourself into a brand. If you look at all my business strategy I have always believed in organic growth. It needs foundations and it needs strategy. You cannot parachute into something and say it is yours.

"People are not stupid any more, and I think the reason for the support is the people see we are trying to do something the right way.

"I am not Colin Chapman, and I never will be. He is a legend and we are not going to emulate him – but everything he did is what we are doing. He built it from scratch and did not buy into anything. You have to have brands that people love. There is lots of competition out there and people have to have respect for what you do."

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Tony says - "they are trying to hijack our black and gold idea."

The Renault car company has sold its remaining shares in the eponymous Formula 1 team, which will be renamed Lotus Renault in 2011.

Renault was left with a 25% shareholding in the team in 2010 after selling the remainder to private investment group Genii Capital.

Those shares have been sold to Genii and will be then taken by Lotus Cars, which is owned by Proton.
The move means there will be two F1 teams in 2011 with Lotus in their name.

The team that competed as Lotus Racing in 2010 will be renamed Team Lotus after buying the historic rights to the name under which Lotus raced from the 1960s until collapsing with financial difficulties in 1994.

Team Lotus boss Tony Fernandes, the owner of the Air Asia airline, is in dispute with Proton over the rights to use the Lotus name in F1.

The cars produced by Lotus Renault will still be called Renaults - changing that would need the permission of all the other F1 teams.

A Renault F1 statement said: "Lotus plc will become a major equity partner of Genii Capital in Lotus Renault GP, and the two parties have concluded a title sponsorship agreement that will run until the end of the 2017 season."

It appears as if both teams plan to run their cars with black and gold liveries, reflecting the historic John Player Special sponsorship of Lotus in the 1970s and 1980s.
Renault and Lotus battling on track in 2010
Renault and Lotus battling on track during a test session in 2010

Renault's statement said: "For 2011, the Lotus Renault GP cars will race in a new interpretation of the iconic black and gold colours that were last used when Lotus and Renault joined forces in the 1980s. 

"This livery, which has been on the drawing board for over two months in order to reinterpret its iconic graphic signature to suit modern media requirements, is sure to strike a powerful chord with the sport's enthusiasts around the world."

Lotus Racing announced its plans to use a black and gold livery at the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in November.

Renault's statement continued: "Renault will continue its strong support of the team with which it won the 2005 and 2006 world championships, as a supplier of engines and technological and engineering expertise.

"Reflecting this technological support, Lotus Renault GP will continue to compete with the Renault chassis name and Renault will enjoy pre-eminent brand exposure on the livery."

Proton's decision to buy into the Renault team and promote its Lotus brand is the latest development in ambitious plans for future expansion by Lotus.

At the recent Paris Motor Show, it announced plans to build a number of new road cars and it has also said it will compete at Le Mans and in IndyCar racing in the US.

The chief executive officer of Group Lotus, Dany Bahar, said: "I can think of no better platform for automotive brand communications than motorsport and F1 is the very pinnacle of open-wheel racing.

"We're well aware that there has been a lot of controversy around the usage of our brand in F1 and I'm delighted to be able to formally clarify our position once and for all: we are Lotus and we are back."

Team Lotus boss Fernandes responded on his page on social network site Twitter : "Dany Bahr has done us a favour. Never felt better about our future and Team Lotus.

He added: "Looks like [they're] trying to hijack our black and gold idea."

Renault's decision to sell its remaining shares in the team ends a 10-year involvement in F1 as a team owner.

The French car company has been a competitor since buying Benetton Formula in 2000 and renaming it Renault for the 2002 season.

Friday, December 03, 2010


Darren Smith, the coach of UniKL comes with impressive credentials. He fields questions on what his expectations are in the MHL and also is frank on his views about Malaysian hockey. He also touches on the issue of coaching the national team in this interview. Read on...

Read more...www.tnbmhl.com.my, the UNOFFICIAL website

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

V.K. Verma and Lalit Bhanot charged

Indian police raided the homes and offices of two top organizers of the recent Commonwealth Games following accusations that that they paid exorbitant rates for buying equipment from a Swiss company, an official said Wednesday.

"During searches (on Tuesday) voluminous incriminating documents have been recovered. The investigation and searches are in progress," said R.K. Gaur, a spokesman for the Central Bureau of Investigation.

India had hoped to boost its international reputation by hosting the Oct. 3-14 Commonwealth Games but instead the event was overshadowed by allegations of corruption, construction delays and cost overruns. The CBI last week registered cases of conspiracy and cheating against the two officials, V.K. Verma and Lalit Bhanot.

It accused them of causing a huge loss to the Indian government by paying 1.07 billion rupees ($23 million) to Swiss Timings Limited for purchasing a timing, scoring and result system which was available at a much cheaper rate from a Spain-based company.

"The Spain-based company was allegedly wrongfully eliminated at prequalification bid stage," the CBI said in a statement.

Both Verma and Bhanot denied any wrongdoing and said they acted with due diligence while awarding contracts for the games.

The CBI earlier this month arrested three games organizing committee officials, M. Jayachandran, T.S. Darbari and Sanjay Mahendroo, accusing them of forgery and cheating over the awarding of games-related contracts.

The cost of hosting the event ballooned to around $15 billion from the original estimated $412 million. The opposition Bharatiya Janata Party alleged millions were siphoned by companies run by relatives of Games officials.


Sydney FC’s Brendan Gan could be idolised by Malaysian fans if the attacking midfielder gets a national team call-up, says Malaysian-based Australian coach Gary Phillips.

Gan, a 22-year-old Sutherland Sharks product, is eligible to play for Malaysia through his bloodlines and in an interview earlier this week said a call up by the Tigers would be an enticing option.

''My inbox [on] Facebook is overflowing with messages from Malaysian fans who want me to come and play for them,'' he told Sebastian Hassett of the Sydney Morning Herald.

''There's been no contact so far from the Malaysian FA but I'd definitely be open to it.''

With his chances of playing for the Socceroos seemingly at long odds for the time being, the Malaysian option may prove a fruitful avenue to international football - particularly so given Malaysia's new direction.

Former national youth coach and now senior boss Rajagopal Krishnasamy has effectively made the national U23 side the national team. Gan at 22 with his pace and penchant for spectacular goals might fit into that vision perfectly as Krishnasamy looks to build for the future. 

If there was a call-up, Gan would follow in the footsteps of two other Australian A-League players who’ve recently been called up for nations of their heritage.

Central Coast’s John Hutchinson has been a regular in the Maltese national team for the last year while Phoenix defender Manny Muscat has also been called up by Malta.

Malaysian Premier League coach Gary Phillips says the A-League is clearly strong enough to provide a boost for the150th ranked nation in the world.

“Most A-League players have the qualities to represent the Malaysian national team,” the Sabah FC coach told au.fourfourtwo.com.

“Any team needs more quality and yes he has the potential to represent Malaysia. All national team players here are stars. If he commits to Malaysia he will be idolized,” said Phillips, a former NSL-winning coach and player and FourFourTwo TV pundit in Malaysia.

“Representing Malaysia would provide quality international experience and would therefore improve him as a player. However International football doesn't happen every week.”

Gan joined Sydney in 2008 after an eye-catching season in the NSW Premier League. His first season under then coach John Kosmina went better than expected scoring twice including a cracker against Melbourne Victory – but since Vitezslav Lavicka took over Gan's struggled to make an impact.

However, the pacy midfielder made his first start of the season at AAMI Park against Heart on the weekend playing over an hour.

And he’s back in an extended squad (two to be omitted) for tonight’s clash with Wellington Phoenix at the SFS.

Malaysia have three friendly matches over the next week against Indonesia, Thailand and Laos. They recently made it out of the Asian Games group stage but were knocked out in the round of 16 by Iran 3-1.

Phillips said that if Gan wanted to play in the Malaysian Super League he would be a quality addition who’d be in demand not just in that part of the AFC.

He added: “He could have a very rewarding career throughout Asia in a footballing and financial sense.”