KUALA Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC) coach Lim Chiow Chuan was fuming mad with the umpire after his side lost 2-1 to Terengganu Hockey Team (THT) in the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL) on Friday.
The defeat saw KLHC hand over their Legue title to THT, after a successful season where Chiow Chuan guided his side to the Charity Shield and the Alagendra Cup.
"We failed to hold on to our title because of poor umpiring, something which could have been easily overcome if there was video umpiring for referrals.
"Teams spend mega bucks by signing top players in the country as well as from overseas, but our hopes are blown away by poor umpiring.
"I suggest the organisers (Malaysian Hockey Confederation) invest in video umpiring to be fair to teams which invest a lot in the MHL," said a red-faced Chiow Chuan.
Chiow Chuan's men were leading THT 1-0 and a win would have assured them the League title, while THT only needed a draw to snatch the crown.
And with seven minutes remaining in the match, KLHC were heading towards the title when 'the umpire made a mistake'.
KLHC's Jang Jonghyun was entrusted with the free hit ball, but he was accused of delaying tactics by the umpire, who blew against the Korean.
THT immediately took the opportunity to attack and Faizal Shaari equalised. And THT made sure the title was theirs when Argentinian Lopez Barreiros scored the second.
"That was the turning point in our game. We had the title in our hands, but poor umpiring denied us glory. Many teams have invested heavily in the MHL, and I feel there must be video umpiring to make sure the right decisions are made in crucial matches," said Chiow Chuan.
Sports Journalist with the New Straits Times since 1994.
My main beat is field hockey, so this blog will have stories that I have written for the NST, as well as hockey news from around the globe. There will be regular updates. I was also the Secretary General of the National Press Club, Malaysia for three terms (six years).