Monday, September 12, 2011

Double internationals Peter and Joseph no more..


TWO double internationals from Negri Sembilan, M. Joseph, 77, and Peter van Huizen, 75, passed away leaving a proud legacy.
Peter died on Sunday, while Joseph yesterday morning.
Both are a rare breed who played hockey and soccer for the country, something which the present batch of sportsmen can’t even come close to.
Peter only started playing hockey when he was 20 years old, by chance, as he happened to be at the Negri Sembilan padang, and was invited to play for the Negri Sembilan Ceylonese Association (NSCA).
He went on to become a pillar between the posts in hockey and was as among the 18 young men who represented Malaysia at the 1956 Melbourne Olympics, and then the 1958 Asian Games in Tokyo.
Peter was even voted as the world’s Best Goalkeeper in 1956.
He played soccer for Negri Sembilan Indians Association (NSIA) and Seremban Rangers, the Negri state team in 1952 and represented Malaysia at the 1959 SEAP Games in Bangkok.
Peter then started coaching Seremban Municipal Council in 1985 and and among the goalkeepers he spotted and trained were Hamdan Hamzah who played for the National Juniors in 1989, Osbert Pinto (a winger turned goalkeeper and recent former international and goalkeepers coach Nasihin Nubli.
Back in the good old days, players had to pay their own airfares, and even though Peter was selected for the 1960 Olympics in Rome, could not afford to travel to because he had just got married and was cash strapped.
And M. Joseph was also made of the same stuff, as he represented the country in hockey as well as soccer.
He played soccer for Malaya from 1947 to 1953, while in hockey, he played in the 1958 Tokyo Asian Games and then in the 1962 Jakarta Asian Games.
And after he retired, Joseph or fondly called one eyed Jo, started coaching in the early 1980s .
He coached the state side, which had the likes of G. Torairaju, Tony Chia and Zainuddin Hussein.
He kept himself active he played in the NS League for NSCA as well as the state veterans squad.
One of those who Joseph coached was former national coach B. Sathianathan, who was playing in the Baradhan Cup then.
Negri Sembilan HA secretary P. Tamilselvan said they were the pride of the state.
“Both of them were pillars in society, as well as sports and it is a great loss to the state.”

India lifts Asian Champions Trophy

ORDOS (China): Goalkeeper S Sreejesh stole the limelight with two crucial saves as India defeated arch-rivals Pakistan 4-2 via penalty shootout in a nerve-wrecking final to clinch the inaugural Asian Champions Trophy hockey tournament on Sunday.
The high-voltage summit clash was marred by Pakistan coach's unwarranted action of constantly abusing Indian players from the roof of the stadium. Whenever there was an infringement from the Indian side, he used the 'F' word liberally. And whenever the umpires blew against India, he hollered 'Thank You'.
Rajpal Singh, Danish Mujtaba, Yuvraj Walmiki and Sarvanjit Singh scored for India in the penalty shootout while Muhammad Rizwan and Waseem Ahmed sounded the board for Pakistan after both the sides were locked goalless in the normal and extra time.
India started the shootout on a wrong note when Pakistan goalkeeper Imran Shah saved the shot from Gurwinder Singh Chandi. Sreejesh then came to the fore with a save off Haseem Abdul Khan. It was then Mujtaba's turn and he neatly sent the ball past Shah to give India 1-0 lead.
Pakistan equalised when Rizwan scored but Indian captain Rajpal slotted the ball home to give his side 2-1 up. Then came the crucial save by Sreejesh as he stopped Shafqat Rasool from scoring, advancing and taking the shot on the pads.
Yuvraj made it 3-1 and the Pakistan veteran Waseem cut the scores to 3-2 but Sarvanjit's conversion past Shah ensured India ran out champions.
Earlier in the match, both India and Pakistan had ample opportunities to finish off the match in regulation time. Pakistan earned seven penalty corners to India's one but they failed to beat the Indian defence and the goalkeeper Sreejesh.
Asian Games champions Pakistan were initially more attacking pushing the Indian defence back. Shakeel Abassi made some fine runs into the Indian striking circle but V Raghunath stood out with his tackling and clearances.
The Indian forwards had a couple of counter-attacks which the Pakistan defence managed to clear. It was a tense match with a few skirmishes between the players. SV Sunil was the first to be shown the green card for a rough tackle.
Pakistan had their first penalty corner in the 14th minute which Sreejesh charged out and saved. India was losing the ball consistently in the midfield. The players were hasty and failed to keep the ball to ensure the passes went right.
In the 29th minute, India had their first penalty corner but Ignace Tirkey failed to trap properly and thus wasting the opportunity.
Pakistan had a bunch of penalty corners in the second half and they were to blame themselves for letting the match drift to the shoot-out. They could not score off the 41st, 47th and 48th minute penalty corners.
With 14 minutes of regulation time left, India got a golden chance with Mujtaba having only Pakistan goalkeeper in front but could not place the ball in and shot wide. In the 60th and 62nd minutes, Pakistan again wasted three penalty corners.
India could have clinched the issue in the 65th minute but Yuvraj shot out from a handshaking distance.
After a tense struggle in 15 minutes of extra time, it finally came down to the shootout in which Sreejesh carried his good form and ensured India return champions.
Indian coach Michael Nobbs was almost in tears and said, "This is a great win. Both teams played well and had enough chances. But it is fantastic to see a young Indian side win such a prestigious tournament."

The Times of India