Thursday, May 22, 2008

Courting a striker

SAD STATE .. Defender and penalty corner drag-flicker Amin Rahim of Malaysia scored two goals in the Japan Qualifier, and he again scored five of Malaysia's nine goals in the Azlan Shah Cup in Ipoh.

NATIONAL chief coach Sarjit Singh is courting a world class striker, but not to join the team as a player, but to coach his blunt forwards.
And the striker is expected to start his work after the Beijing Olympics.
The Malaysian forward-line has only scored a total of 10 goals in both the Japan Olympic Qualifiers and the Azlan Shah Cup, and a foreign coach is badly needed to sharpen their skills in the semi-circle.
“Yes, I have a striker-coach in mind, but I can’t release his name yet because I need to consult the (MHF) Coaching Committee, as well as the National Sports Council for endorsement first.
“We have a good set of strikers, but they run out of ideas when in the semi-circle, and this needs to be arrested before the Asia Cup next year,” said Sarjit.
The Asia Cup will double-up as a qualifier for the 2010 Delhi World Cup.
MHF Coaching Chairman C. Paramalingam said since the council had agreed to hire a short-term strikers coach, he will wait for Sarjit’s recommendation.
“Yes, we have skilful strikers, but they lack composure in the semi-circle, and they don’t know which strokes to pick. They need to be coached on when to hit, push, flick, or just tap the ball in when the situation warrants,” said Paramalingam.
Paramalingam is also of the opinion that since the Malaysian strikers have a large number of circle penetrations in both the tournaments, only a little fine-tuning is needed to get them scoring more goals.
“We can’t wait anymore, because there is a very important assignment in the Asia Cup, where failure is no longer an option.
“If we start training them from this year, I have a feeling we will do well in future tournaments,” said Paramalingam.
Meanwhile, goalkeepers’ coach Shahid Ali Khan and a few development coaches will scout for players during the national Under-16 tournament in Alor Star starting this Saturday.

Satgunam six-a-side

THE late S. Satgunam (pic), a former Malaysian Hockey Federation secretary, who was a world class administrator.
THE Second S. Satgunam six-a-side challenge will be held at the Seremban II Hockey Stadium on June 21-22.
Last year, 36 teams competed in the tournament, in honour of the late Satgunam who was a former Malaysian Hockey Federation (MHF) secretary.
Negri Sembilan is honouring the hockey stalwart, as he was also the NSHA secretary.
Invitations this year have also been extended to clubs in the Asian region, and the closing date for local teams is May 30, with an entry fee of RM100.
The prize money of RM3,000, RM2,500, RM2,000 and RM1,500 will be awarded to the top four teams respec tively.
For information, contact NSHA secretary P. Tamil Selvan at 019-3650303 of fax 06-6011205.