Thursday, September 07, 2017

SOJC 2017 Fixtures

SOJC 2017

Media Release

Malaysia will open its campaign in the 7th Sultan of Johor Cup against Great Britain.

The week long tournament to be held at the Taman Daya Hockey Stadium will see the hosts taking on Great Britain, India, Australia, United States of America and Japan.

The Malaysian team, coached by Wallace Tan, will then play India ( Oct 23) followed by Japan ( Oct 25), USA ( Oct 26) and complete the preliminary matches against Australia ( Oct 28).

While USA are making their debut, the participation of India who are the reigning world junior champions will surely attract the fans.

" This year the matches will be played in four quarter format in line with the requirements of the International Hockey Federation," said Organising Secretary of the SOJC Dato Manjit Majid Abdullah.

" We plan to hold several seminars and courses in collaboration  with the AHF Academy as well as coaching clinics for school children as part of our commitment to promote the sport.

" We hope that fans will make it a point to be at the stadium not only to support our Malaysian team but to watch the future stars of world Hockey in action."

Great Britain will be the first team to arrive in Johor Baru on October 17 and are expected to play some matches against the Johor Razak Cup squad.

As for Malaysia, they have held several training camps with the present one starting on September 3 and ending on September 8.

Besides Wallace, the other coaches handling the team, comprising of 5 players that were in the Junior World Cup squad last year in India, are Mohd Amin Rahim, Nor Saiful Zaini , Madzli Ikmar and M. Nadarajah.

" I presently have a squad of 30 players and we have held several phases of training in preparation of the tournament," said Wallace.

" Looking at the teams it will be a tough tournament and the opening two matches will surely be a stern test for the team.

" We will assemble the team again in late September and plan to hold our final week of training in Johor a week before the tournament and hopefully get to play some friendly matches."

India will see Jude Felix coaching the squad and he had played in the Malaysian Hockey League in 1994, helping Yayasan Negri Sembilan to the league title that year.

Australia, who are the defending champions start of as favourites to retain the title.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Potential FAM Sec Gen Candidates

While the focus of attention is on the battle for presidency of the Football Association Malaysia, this blog wants to divert attention to a more serious proposition - who will be the Secretary General of FAM after the elections on March 25.

The position of the Secretary General is the prerogative of the President who has the absolute power to appoint the Secretary General as provided for in the FAM Statutes.

For the purpose of discussion we shall assume that HRH Tengku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim and Tan Sri Annuar Musa will decide to opt out of the race leaving a two horse race between Khairy Jamaluddin and Tan Sri Aseh Che Mat.

With current Secretary General Dato Hamidin Mohd Amin going for the Deputy President , there will be an opening for the Secretary General post.

Below is a list of candidates for the position based on their ability, knowledge of Football and close affiliation to some of the candidates for President.

The list however is not based on preference by just in order of alphabet.

Ahmad Khawari Mat Isa

The current chief of staff at Astro Arena was a former media officer at FAM. He was also a journalist at Berita Harian and is currently the President of Sportswriters Association of Malaysia and Vice President of AIPS Asia. His vast knowledge in Football will be an asset for Football.

Dato Alex Soosay

The former Secretary General of Asian Football Confederation and served at the NSFA and has good insights on Malaysian Football.

Mohd Rizal Hashim

The host of the "infamous" talk show Dengan Izin. Served as media officer at FAM and was former Malay Nail sports journalist.

Muhammad Firmansyah Aang

The right hand confidante of KJ who was a key figure in the formation of NyTeam FC and the NFDP.

Safirul Abu Bakar

The CEO of the NFDP and had strong marketing skills. Shares a cordial relationship with government agencies.

OKS headed for QPR?

It is learnt that national Football coach Dato Ong Kum Swee will be attending an attachment stint with English Division One side Queens Park Rangers.

The month long attachment program was initially planned for last year but a busy calendar for the 47 year old Malacca born coach meant that it had to be put off to this year.

And the stint is expected to materialise next month.

QPR were a Premier League side and ate owned by Tan Sri Tony Fernandes, once touted as a candidate for the Football Association of Malaysia presidency.

Prior to this several coaches have had brief attachment stints with overseas clubs, most notably Dato K. Rajagobal and B. Sathianathan.

Managed by Ian Holloway, QPR play at Loftus Road  and Kim Swee is said to have gained attachment to the first team.


Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Chong Wei takes a break.

Having played Badminton continuously for the past 17 years, with exception of his enforced rest due to a doping violation, Lee Chong Wei will skip all events until the All England this March.

The 34 year old world number 1 is not overly concerned about slipping down the rankings, rather feels that this rest period will not only allow him to work on his game and physical condition but at the same time give him the hunger and desire to do well in the World Championships in Glasgow this August.

Chong Wei did not discount the possibility of using the German Open as a warm up event before his assault for yet another All England crown.

" It is time I took a break from the sport but it's for competitions only as I will be on court undergoing training as usual," said Chang Wei when contacted by this blog.

" It is the World Chanps title that I am after and the planning is geared towards that tournament.

" At present the plan is to make a return to competitive Badminton at the All England and I may consider playing the German Open."

Chong Wei has yet to make an appearance in the MPL, a private Badminton league this season where he is donning the Colours of Petaling BC.

He is however expected to take to the court this Saturday, playing in the mixed doubles partnering Zhao Yunie against Ampang BC.

" I have yet to play in the MPL and it should be a entertaining match this Saturday," said Chong Wei.

" I have yet to decide if I will play in the knockout stage as it depends if we qualify and other factors as well.

"As I have said in the past I will be playing in selective tournaments and that is what my plan is right now."

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

DBKL denied by KLFA for FAM Cup

Another Club is facing problems similar to what Selangor PKNS is facing.

This time it is Kuala Lumpur FA that is denying permission to City Hall ( DBKL) to participate in the FAM Cup.

While KLFA argues that City Hall has achieved any success in its domestic league thus does not meet the criteria, it fails to understand that DBKL was the FAM Cup champions in 1987 and 1988.

In the past those wishing to participate in the FAM cup had to win or be runners up in the domestic stars leagues.

However the huge financial burden forced FAM to have a relook and a new criteria was introduced with clubs having the ability both financially and physical facilities being allowed to parachute into the FAM Cup.

It is clear that PKNS was ill advised to move their affiliation from Selangor FA to Selangor Malays FC.

Will that sane person now be advising DBKL on what to do?

Money seems to be the main issue as KLFA feel that their share of the cake in terms of funding could be curtailed by the inclusion of DBKL which is the funding arm for the city team in the Premier League.

The fact remains that DBKL can make life difficult for KLFA as they own most of the playing fields and stadiums are actually under the purview of City Hall.

FAM will most likely have to decide on this issue as well but this is a clear cut case, unlike the PKNS issue where a meddling official has created the mess and put it squarely on FAM to decide.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

The PKNS - Selangor FA Saga- who is the culprit?

The million dollar question that begs an answer is just who misled Selangor PKNS?

This question arises after it was revealed by an insider that in actual fact the whole issue concerning Selangor FA and PKNS was in actual fact created by ab individual and had in reality nothing to do with the internal squabble concerning Selangor FA.

One needs to understand the regulations in place in the M- League to understand the situation better.

The rules clearly state that clubs need to get consent/approval from the state FA before competing in any national tournament.

As a matter of fact FAM goes through its affiliates to correspond with clubs, respecting the line of authority instead of dealing directly. This is in line with the FAM constitution.

Back to entries for the 2017 M League, rightfully the invites ought to be channeled through the state FA's and not directly to the concerned clubs.

Not only that, any entry of subsequent confirmation needs to be endorsed by the state FA and neither FAM or FMLLP can accept a direct entry.

So was PKNS given a wrong impression that they could submit a direct entry,thus snowballing a internal conflict into a major one as certain parties took advantage of an internal squabble to throw in a spanner?

FAM should get to the bottom of the matter and hold an investigation if PKNS was being misled into doing this.

The closing date is November 30, but this non issue could have been resolved much earlier.

Should Selangor FA decide to haul this matter to court, someone needs to answer, so best own up now and stop meddling into state affairs.


Thursday, November 24, 2016

Nauraj to undergo surgery

National high jumper Nauraj Singh Randhawa had to cut back on his training stint in Australia and will undergo an operation next Tuesday.

The national record holder who created waves by qualifying on merit to the Rio Olympics suffered an injury to his  elbow  last Wednesday during training  under his coach Alex Stewart in Sidney.

The injury will keep him on the sidelines for up to six weeks before he resumes light training.

" Well it was an accident which I sustained during training. It could had happened to anyone and it's normal but I was a little unfortunate it damaged my elbow more than the usual" explained Nauraj  who returned to Malaysia on Tuesday night when contacted.

"People fall off hurdles all the time during plyometrics.

" The good thing  is my lower limb is perfectly fine and I'm not looking at it as a set back , but rather as an opportunity to be able to work on certain areas which could benefit me in the long run like balance and strength in the lower part of my body. 

" I'll be back to running within 6 weeks but for me to gain normal arm abilities would take up to 3 months"

Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said that he was informed with regards to the injury sustained by Nauraj.

" He will be having a minor procedure but we expect a full recovery in 3 months," said Khairy when contacted.

Nauraj had an ankle injury in 2011 but recovered well enough to go out and set records in high jump.

There is no doubt that this 24 year old will be able to bounce back from this injury and go on to get the gold in SEA Games next August.

The Johor lad is destined for greater heights and will no doubt be extra cautious in trainings,

And he hopes to resume his training under Alex once he fully recovers.

Doping Scandal in Takraw, Exclusive!

In a devastating blow to Malaysian Sepaktakraw, 6 players and 3 officials have been suspended by the ISTAF for refusing to provide urine samples for anti doping tests during the recent Kings Cup tournament in Bangkok.

It is learnt that Takraw will now most likely be omitted from the much publicised and cash laden Podium Program.

The players were required to provide their urine samples but refused to do so and it's alleged that the 3 officials also did not cooperate with the anti doping agency that was entrusted by ISTAF to carry out the doping checks.

It is further learnt that those implicated have been informed and have a 14 day period to appeal against the suspension.

Going by WADA regulations, those involved can be suspended for 4 years or a minimum 2  years if the mitigation process is handled properly.

ISTAF will hold an inquiry once the 9 have provided their appeals to decide on the issue.

This is a bitter blow for Malaysia in preparation for the SEA Games and Asian Games.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Ugly performance, desired result

Malaysia struggled for Long periods in their opening match of the AFF Cup against Cambodia before winning 3-2.

Coming back twice from behind, Malaysia raised their game when it mattered to snatch all three points before their crucial match ups against Vietnam and Myanmar.

Offering no excuses for their display, coach Dato Ong Kim Swee felt that what was more important was getting a winning start, and improve on areas that stood out in the match,

" We needed to get the three points, that was the aim and I am relieved we managed to achieve it" said Kim Swee when contacted in Yangon.

" Of course our performance is much to he desired but we hope to build from this.

" There was too much ball watching, lack of movement and urgency in the first half.

" Things improved towards the final quarter but I must reiterate that our finishing let us down.

" We need to work on a few grey areas in Defence and not allow opponents such luxury in Attack.

" A job done to get the points but far from satisfactory as far as the overall performance is concerned."

The defenders were static when conceding the second goal but Kim Swee does not have much options on the bench,

It was only after the inclusion of Safee Sali that the strike force posed any threat to the opponents.

Kim Swee could opt to start Safee instead of Darren Lok in their next match against Vietnam.