Former National Sports Council Director General Dato Wira Mazlan Ahmad was the surprise inclusion as a member of the Sports Advisory Panel in the list released by Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin.
Khairy also named for Chief Secretary to the government Tun Ahmad Sarji as the Chairman of the SAP, an all powerful panel that is provided for an an advisory panel under the Sports Development Act 1997.
Others named in the panel is veteran sports writer and current Malay Mail Group Editor Dato Syed Nadzri Syed Harun, KLRC owner Dato Sri Andrew Kam, national hockey team manager George Koshy, Olympic Council of Malaysia Deputy President Tan Sri Mohd Noor Rahim and OCM Vice President Dato Low Beng Choo.
Also to be included is a representative each from Sabah and Sarawak as provided for in the Sports Development Act 1997.
The appointment of Mazlan will surely be a jolt for some top officials at the National Sports Council who have failed to use his expertise in providing input to help arrest the declining standards of sports of late.
" I hand picked those appointed based on their ability and knowledge both in sports as well as in their respective professions, " said Khairy.
"They will play an important role in helping me draw up guidelines and policies as well as look into issues plaguing sports in the country.
" I believe that with the formation of the SAP, things will move faster as now I can draw on experienced officials like Tun and Mazlan to help me."
They are appointed for a two year term. The last SAP was headed by Dato Nik Mahmud.
"I am honoured to have been picked by the Minister to serve on this committee. I was a bit surprised when the Minister himself contacted me to ask me if I was keen to serve," said Mazlan,
"The Panel comprises professionals in several fields, all with vast knowledge in sports.
"By appointing Tun Ahmad Sarji as Chairman I must say that Khairy has uplifted the status of the SAP."
Koshy and Andrew are credited with running successfully their clubs, KLHC and KLRC respectively.
While KLHC have dominated the Malaysian hockey scene, KLRC produced Malaysia's first World Junior Champion Zulfadli Zulkifli.
Koshy is a Chartered Accountant and joint partner of Ernest & Young, while Andrew is a barrister at law and also Director of Peninsular Gold Sdn Bhd.
Syed Nadzri has vast knowledge in sports as he was a top notch sports journalist in the 70's and has kept abreast with the current happenings in sports.