Friday, May 16, 2008


BEAUTIES with the Beast outside the Green Stadium in Japan where Malaysia were robbed of an entry into the final of the Olympic Qualifiers, because the International Hockey Federation (FIH) were slow to adapt to changes in Video Umpiring, which had taken place in cricket and Tennis much earlier.
MALAYSIA’S protest during the Japan Olympic Qualifiers has saved future tournaments from turning into a sham.
The International Hockey Federation (FIH) has finally amended its video umpiring rules to include a clause which allows: Whether a breach of the rules has been observed within the attacking circle in the play leading to the award ing or disallowing of a goal. It is then for the umpire to take any breach into account in reaching his decision.
Earlier, video umpiring could only judge whether the ball crossed the goal line, whether the ball was legally played or touched inside the circle by the stick of an attacker before the ball crossed the goal line and whether the ball travelled outside the circle before it entered the goal during the taking of a penalty corner.
Malaysia were leading Japan 3-2 in the Qualifiers, and only a minute separating them from playing Germany in the final, when an equaliser was scored after a Japanese player stopped the ball with his thigh.
But then, there was no provision in video umpiring to help Malaysia’s cause. And the protest was thrown out, and Malaysia found themselves out in the cold.

The new rule, called ‘minor amendments’ by the FIH, will be used in the: Men’s and women’s Champions Trophies 2008, but a formal proposal may be put to the Executive Board following the completion of both of these events if the trial is deemed a success.
The FIH also said: These adjustments have been brought in to counteract problems that have occurred at previous tournaments.
To late for Malaysia, but not for hockey.

Pathetic Malaysia

MALAYSIAN players and officials after winning a bronze medal at the Japan Olympic Qualifiers.


FROM a potential finalist, Malaysia are now embarrassingly close to not even playing in the 17th Azlan Shah Cup playoff in Ipoh on Sunday.
The same script in the Japan Olympics Qualifiers last month, was shown as a re-run in Ipoh, and the seismic cracks which caused both disasters in Japan and also in Ipoh are in defense, midfield and attack. Malaysia meet India today, and are only good to play a spoilers role.
India need a win to play in the final against Argentina, while Malaysia to avoid finishing last and not even playing in the play-off of this seven-team tournament.
A defeat today would turn Malaysia into mere spectators at their own back-yard.
DEFENSE: As shaky as ever, and have let in 14 goals, some of which can be awarded as the silliest of this edition. Megat Azrafiq is overweight and easy to beat, while Madzli Ikmar and Jiwa Mohan have had a better tournament. But goalkeeper S. Kumar has been blowing hot and cold.
MIDFIELD: Non-existent, because Malaysian have been playing more overhead balls which bypasses this section, than mounting well planned attacks from midfield.
FORWARDS: Had more than their fair share of circle penetrations, but Malaysia have only scored eight goals, of which, four were scored by defender Amin Rahim during penalty corners. Two by midfielders Kelvinder Singh and Azlan Misron, and two strikers by S. Selvaraju and Chua Boon Huat.
The only thing going for Malaysia is their fitness, and it is not enough to carry a team in any high-ranking tournament.
MAY 17: Argentina v Canada (4pm), India v Malaysia (6pm), New Zealand v Belgium (8pm).
P W D L F A Pts

ARGENTINA 5 4 1 0 17 6 13

PAKISTAN 6 3 1 2 18 16 10

INDIA 5 3 0 2 15 15 9

BELGIUM 5 2 0 3 14 14 6

NEW ZEALAND 5 2 0 3 11 13 6

CANADA 5 1 1 3 5 10 4

MALAYSIA 5 1 1 3 8 14 4