Monday, April 20, 2015

Maheswari gunning for golden finish...

K. MAHESWARI was among the last batch of Malaysian women that won the 1982 New Delhi Asian Games bronze medal, and come May 13, she will be looking for a golden outing.
  The incumbent Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) vice-president will be going for broke when she challengers S. Shamala for the women's deputy president post.
  But Maheswari, Group Chief Regulatory Officer at Kenanga Group, made it clear that she is not in a battle with her challenger, but will go for broke in a fight to salvage women's hockey.
  "I was fortunate, or you can call it unfortunate, to be in the last women's hockey team which won a medal at the Asian Games. It has been a long 33 years since we last touched a medal at that level, which portrays the state of the sport.
  "And I want to make it clear that I'm not in a battle with my opponent, but in a fight to salvage the women's section," said Maheswari.
  The MHC vice president also revealed that her current position in MHC was just as an endorser, after decisions are made.
  "Most of the time we were just told after decisions and plans were made and so I could not actively involve myself even though I was a vice-president. The deputy president is a decision making post, and that's why I am keen to see myself at the top of the podium so that I can play a more active role," said the former international who has been nominated by Kuala Lumpur HA.
  Nominations close on April 28 and the last day for withdrawals is May 9. As of today, Maheswari's challenger is Shamala, also an incumbent vice-president.
  When asked if she has started her state-wide campaign: "I'm not the kind of person who would pick up the phone and call state affiliates looking for votes. The affiliates know my work-rate as I have been in the hockey circle for a long time. Yes, some states did call and ask me if I'm interested, but I'm not the kind who will go on a campaign trail."
  There is a proposed line-up linking her to a certain camp, making its round on social media as the election fever heightens.
  "No Im not linked to any camp. Actually I do not favour taking sides in camps or campaigns, but would rather the delegates make their own line-up on voting day."
  With MHC president Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah and deputy president Puan Sri Raja Noora Ashikin not seeking re-election, May 13 looks set to be a battle of many fronts for every position.
  Thirty-two delegates will cast their votes, half of them women, for 10 posts -- president, two deputy presidents, and seven vice-presidents.
  Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal will stand for president and KLHA have names George Koshy as his challenger. George and Subahan would need three nominations to be eligible to contest the post.
  Koshy has also been nominated as the men's deputy president, and he is expected to announce his decision on which post he will stand when nominations close.
  Incumbent vice-president Datuk Nur Azmi Ahmad has also said he will be going for broke, for the deputy's post.
  The new MHC constitution did away with the secretary's post and replaced it with a CEO, while there will be two deputy president's to govern both genders.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Former journo Johnson Fernandez new KLHA president..

FORMER journalist Johnson Fernandez (pic) was given the mandate to become the new president of Kuala Lumpur Hockey Association (KLHA).
  KLHA is the most active association in the country, and Johnson had no challengers to the hot seat.
  In fact, all the office bearers were unopposed, with V. Rajamanickam 
returned as secretary.. a post he has held for the last 22 years.
  Abu Huraira Yazid is still deputy president while the vice-presidents are Mej (rtd) Raj Kumar, Faithal Hassan, S. Samson and James Andrew. Daljit Singh remained as treasurer.
  Founded in 1981, KLHA has many divisions in their league, as well as a handful of development programmes running simultaneously. There's never a dull moment at their field at Jalan Pantai.
  Johnson, during his journalism days, was a hard-hitting columnist who had hockey closest to his heart.
  "It's a honour to be the fourth president of KLHA, and I have many plans for the association, but I can't say much until I have a discussion with my council members at a later date," said Johnson.
  Rajamanickam said the priority would be fund-raising as they have a full calender every season.
  "We are a very active association but money is short after our president George Koshy left us. He use to fund many of our programmes, but now we will have to look for sponsors and that's our first priority now," said Rajamanickam.
  The 'new' KLHA council then nominated Koshy for president and deputy president at the May 13 Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) elections.
  If Koshy gets two more nominations, he will be eligible to stand for presdient and the challenger would be Selangor HA president Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal.
  "We have nominated George for president as well as deputy president for the MHC elections, while former KLHA vice-president K. Maheswari has been nominated for the women deputy president’s post," said Rajamanickam.
  S. Shamala, current MHC vice-president, will also stand for the women's deputy presdient elections. In the men's section, Datuk Nur Azmi Ahmad will be challenging Koshy and any other nominees.
  "KLHA feel Shamala is wearing too many hats as she is also a council member of AHF (Asian Hockey Federation), in the FIH committee as well as vice-president of the Selangor HA.
  "That's why we nominated former player Maheswari as she would be more available in MHC matters," said Rajamanickam.
  However, Koshy and Maheswari were not consulted on their nominations, which close on April 28. They have until May 9 to withdraw from the race.
  Kooshy has repeatedly said that he does not want to stand for the MHC president's post and efforts to contact him were not returned.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Dr S. Shamala for MHC deputy president

THE Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) will see winds of change on May 13, with royalty bowing out while intellectuals taking over the top echelon.
  For at the moment of writing, Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal still has no challengers for the president's post, while S. Shamala will be gunning for the women's deputy president's post.
  The men's deputy president front-runner is Datuk Nur Azmi Ahmad.
  Incumbent president Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah and incumbent deputy president is Puan Sri Raja Noora Ashikin Raja Abdullah will not seek re-election.
  Subahan is a chartered accountant by profession, while Shamala is a computer whiz at Universiti Putra Malaysia, and her full title is professor Dr Shamala, a PhD holder in Computer Science.
  "I have decided to stand for the deputy president's post (women) after receiving good feedback from state affiliates, and there is no turning back, as I am willing to challenge anybody who is also keen on the post," said Shamala yesterday.
  However, with recent amendments to the MHC constitution, there will be two deputy president's with one for each gender.
  "After the amendment, the deputy president's post is no longer ceremonial but a working post. So, at the end of the last council meeting, Puan Sri (Raja Noora) told me to go for it and that's why I have decided to stand for election at a higher post," said Shamala.
  Raja Noora Ashikin said she will call it a day: "Yes I will not be seeking re-election, and have even asked my home state Perak not to nominate me. I am backing Shamala to take over the chair."
  Shamala started as secretary to the now defunct Malaysian Women's Hockey Federation (MWHF) and then moved on to become a vice-president in the MHC.
  She is also a council member in the Asian Hockey Federation: "I have served hockey at every level, and with two deputy presidents' I can concentrate on developing the ladies teams as well as grassroot. Malaysia has some very talented women players, and they need some sound programmes to make them even better.
  "I'm ready to take on a bigger responsibility in the sport which I have dedicated half my life to, and I will challenge anybody who stands against me. There is no turning back," said Shamala.
  Early indications are that Shamala and Subahan will not have to go to the polls to take over the reigns of MHC, as they might just be winners when nominations close.
  During the earlier nominations which were cancelled due to a messed up constitution, Subahan won unopposed with 12 states nominating him, while Shamala had the highest nomination (men as well as women) for vice-president with 11 states backing her quest.
  The closing date for nominations is April 28 while the last date for withdrawals is May 9. 

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Antwerp: World League Semi-finals fixtures (click on MALE icon)

  • MALE
    June 20, 2015Pool A18:00 IND FRA 0 - 0Upcoming
    Pool A20:00 PAK POL 0 - 0Upcoming
    June 21, 2015Pool B12:00 CHN MAS 0 - 0Upcoming
    Pool B16:00 GBR BEL 0 - 0Upcoming
    Pool A18:00 AUS FRA 0 - 0Upcoming
    June 23, 2015Pool B12:00 GBR IRL 0 - 0Upcoming
    Pool A16:00 IND POL 0 - 0Upcoming
    Pool B18:00 BEL CHN 0 - 0Upcoming
    June 24, 2015Pool A14:00 POL FRA 0 - 0Upcoming
    Pool A20:00 PAK AUS 0 - 0Upcoming
    June 25, 2015Pool B14:00 MAS IRL 0 - 0Upcoming
    Pool B16:00 GBR CHN 0 - 0Upcoming
    June 26, 2015Pool B14:00 IRL CHN 0 - 0Upcoming
    Pool A16:00 PAK IND 0 - 0Upcoming
    Pool B18:00 MAS BEL 0 - 0Upcoming
    Pool A20:00 AUS POL 0 - 0Upcoming
    June 28, 2015Pool A12:00 PAK FRA 0 - 0Upcoming
    Pool B14:00 MAS GBR 0 - 0Upcoming
    Pool A16:00 IND AUS 0 - 0Upcoming
    Pool B18:00 BEL IRL 0 - 0Upcoming
    July 1, 20159th / 10th10:30  -  0 - 0Upcoming
    QF 113:00  -  0 - 0Upcoming
    QF 215:30  -  0 - 0Upcoming
    QF 318:00  -  0 - 0Upcoming
    QF 420:30  -  0 - 0Upcoming
    July 3, 20155th - 8th13:00  -  0 - 0Upcoming
    5th - 8th15:30  -  0 - 0Upcoming
    SF 118:00  -  0 - 0Upcoming
    SF 220:30  -  0 - 0Upcoming
    July 5, 20157th / 8th10:30  -  0 - 0Upcoming
    5th / 6th13:00  -  0 - 0Upcoming
    3rd / 4th15:30  -  0 - 0Upcoming
    Final18:00  -  0 - 0Upcoming

Malaysia's WL Semis fixtures drawn in heaven..

THE World League Semi-finals fixtures are so kind to Malaysia, that it would be quite difficult not to qualify for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics.
  For, only a total mess up the first two easier matches in Antwerp, Belgium, from June 20 to July 5 will see Malaysia sit out of the Olympics which they last played in Sydney 2000.
  The heavens must have been smiling on coach Tai Beng Hai and his men as they play China first on June 21, and after a three-day break they play Ireland on June 25 and wins in both these matches might just see them play against Pakistan or India in the cross-over quarter-finals.
  Yes they have a three day break after playing Cina, ranked 31 in the world. Malaysia, for the record, are 12th in the World, while Ireland are 14th.
  Beng Hai's men will play the two toughest matches in their Group at the tail end.. as hosts Belgium are on June 26, and Great Britain on June 28.
  And for ealy preparations, the team will will head for Belgium on May 28 to play a series of friendly matches.
  Team manager Datuk Nur Azmi Ahmad said matches have been lined up with Belgium and Germany, as well as club sides in their last Tour before the WL Semifinals.
  Malaysia finished last in the Azlan Shah Cup, but there were glimmers of hope as they did not get thrashed by teams ranked much higher than them.
  They beat India (ninth) and Canada (15th) 3-2 and 4-1 respectively, and lost narrowly against Australia (number one) 3-2, champions New Zealand (seventh) 4-2 and drew 4-4 with Canada before losing out 3-1 in the fifth-sixth penalty shoot-out.
  "Considering the close margins at the Azlan Shah Cup, our preparations for the WL Semi-finals need to focus on our defense and midfield, and so the friendly matches against Belgium and Germany will be very crucial for our aim to qualify for the Olympics," said Nur Azmi.
  For the record, the last time Malaysia played Belgium was at the World Cup and and score was an unflattering 6-2.
  Malaysia arein Group B of the World League Semi-finals in Antwerp from June 20-July 5. The other rivals are hosts Belgium, Great Britain, Ireland and China.
  In Group A are Australia, India, Pakistan, Poland and France.
  With today marking 64 days more to the WL Semi-finals, the national team will be back in training after finishing last in Ipoh.
  "We also plan to be in Belgium at least two weeks ahead of the Olympic Qualifier, and there could be more matches then. But this tour but me taken seriously as it could be our final chance to play with world class teams in a friendly, before we feel the might of their brunt in the qualifier. The defenders need to learn how to minimise their mistakes, as world class teams don't give you too many chances to score, and they are also clinical when attacking," said Nur Azmi.
  On his personal feeling: "I believe we have the players who can take us into the Olympics after missing it for 16 years, so they should not be disheartened with the Azlan Shah Cup scores, and learn from their mistakes instead."