Pic: Datuk Ow Soon Kooi
THE Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) coaching committee yesterday broke new ground when they held a one-day seminar to educate Junior Hockey League (JHL) coaches.
Thirty-two JHL coaches went through a brief syllabus, conducted by MHC technical director Terry Walsh, to upgrade their knowledge, and synchronise their training methods with the national coaching style.
"We conducted a seminar for JHL coaches because these are the people who are in touch with future national players and how, and what, they teach these youth will form the basics," said coaching committee chairman Datuk Ow Soon Kooi.
Walsh upgraded their knowledge on recent rule changes, and parted with methods on how to conduct basic training.
"We started this clinic to make sure that every coach in the country follows the same syllabus so that when these 16 to 19 year-olds graduate to become national players, the national coaches will not have to start from scratch again.
"This is just a small beginning, as we intend to have another clinic during the Azlan Shah Cup (April 6-16 in Ipoh) for higher level coaches who handle the Razak Cup as well as the Malaysia Hockey League," said Soon Kooi.
A total of 35 teams, 10 in Division One and 25 in Division Two, competed in this season's JHL. Some of the coaches could not attend the clinic as they are involved with the quarter-finals stage of the TNB Cup.
Meanwhile, three Thunderbolts are almost assured of playing in the TNB Cup semi-semifinals after big wins in the first leg quarter-finals on Friday.
Sunday, only the Anderson Thunderbolts-UniKL Young Guns return leg still remains an open affair, as the first leg ended 3-2 in favour of the Ipoh school.
Anderson, the Division Two champions, will be promoted to Division One next season. More importantly, they are looking for a Thunderbolts sweep this year.
"Three Thunderbolts (SSP-MSP, SSTMI and BJSS) have almost assured themselves a spot in the semi-finals and we will be aiming to make it four tomorrow (today).
"With home ground advantage and crowd support, I believe we can beat UniKL at the Azlan Shah Stadium," said Anderson team manger Saiyuti Samat.
In the first leg, Anderson were losing 0-2, but surged ahead to draw level and then score a last second winner.
SUNDAY: TNB Cup q-finals Second Leg: Perlis Young Lions Juniors (1) v SSTMI Thunderbolts (7) (SSTMI, 5pm), Sabah Sports School (1) v SSP-MSP Thunderbolts (8) (Pitch II, 7pm), Anderson Thunderbolts (3) v UniKL Young Guns (2) (Azlan Shah, 5pm), BJSS Juniors (3) v BJSS Thunderbolts (6) (Pitch I, 7pm).
Note: Matches at National Stadium Bukit Jalil unless stated. First leg scores in parentheses.