Thursday, July 29, 2010

UniKL start early for MHL

UNIKL were a late entry last season and had trouble settling down, but this season, preparations have already started to field a strong side in the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL) which is slated to start in the first week of De cember.
In their MHL debut early this year UniKL, with an average age of 21, finished at the bottom of the six-team pool in the Premier Division. But in the quarter-finals, they held May bank 3-3 in the first leg, but lost 2-0 in the return leg.
And in the Junior Hockey League (JHL), they were runners- up in the League and Overall champions.
Coach I. Vickneswaran said the club is currently con ducting an open trial, and he is looking at some quality players to make an impact in the MHL.
“Last season, we only had a month’s preparation and struggled to click in the early matches. That is why we are conducting trials at the Kuala Lumpur HA stadium this week, and the response has been great.
“Some of our former young players have been snatched by other clubs, so we are also looking to inject the MHL team with some quality senior players and at this stage, the outlook is promising,” said Vickneswaran.
The team was started by their chancellor Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah, who is also the Malaysian Hockey Federation president.
“The final trials for short-listed players will be held on Saturday, but even then we will not be too sure of some signings, as they have to get release form their work and former clubs which they had signed contracts with,” said Vickneswaran.
Last season UniKL spent a total of RM500,000 in the MHL and JHL: “We have a healthy budget this season too, and with it, we hope to sign some quality players to help boost the performance of our young and rising players.”
The club started with a bang in their JHL debut when they dethroned former Overall champions Bukit Jalil Sports School (BJSS) and denied Bandar Penawar Sports School (BPSS) Thunderbolt the double.
In the MHL, they will have to contend with heavyweight clubs like Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club , Sapura, Tenaga Nasional and Maybank.

Constitution amendment gets council nod

THE Malaysian Hockey Federation (MHF) council yesterday endorsed a proposal to amend their constitution which will turn the posts of their secretary and treasurer from elected to appointed.
The amendments will now be tabled for approval at the MHF EGM in September, and if it gets the 2/3 majority, there will not be elections for both the posts when MHF hold their Annual Genaral Meeting at the end of the year.
"The council members agreed that the amendment to appoint our sectary and treasurer be tabled at an EGM after Hari Raya. The overall response was good, and the motion has pased its first test," said MHF president Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah.
A similar proposal has been bandied around for at least three times in the history of MHF, but it never went through the motions.
"My personnal view is that it is a good measure to tighten up loose ends in our administration. And even though we have a general manager and an appointed sectary, it will not be redudancy because the workload has increased tremendusly.
"Right now, we have five paid staff to handle matters, but with many tournaments and junior developments to run, we are still short or manpower," said Tengku Abdullah.
On the national team, Tengku Abdullah felt they should strive to achieve their KPI which is gold at the Asian Games.
"Their KPI is to win gold at the Asian Games and qualify for the Olympics. And if they fail at the Asian level, then the preparation must be turned towards qualifying from the qualifier," said Tengku Abdullah.
Then there were allegations that players did not get their full allowance payments because of mismanagement, but it was quashed when Tengku Abdullah said he has been briefed on the matter, and found no elements of faul play.
And the council then agreed to give the Project 2013 players an extra allowance of RM1,000 each for winning the Sea Cup title in Bangkok last year.

Hockey president keen on soccer comeback

MALAYSIAN Hockey Federation (MHF) president Tengku Abdulah Sultan Ahmad Shah will go ahead with plans to wrest a deputy president's seat in the FA of Malaysia elections this Saturday.
Tengku Ahmad, speaking before attending the MHF council meeting yesterday, said: "I have been requested to make a comeback. When I quit in 2007 it was because of the national team's poor performance in the Asia Cup.
"However, I leave it to the delegates to decide if football requires my services."
About his chances: "I leave it in the hands of god to determine the outcome."
Tengku Abdullah also said that he was a temporary measure in hockey, as the request came from previous president Sultan Azlan Shah, but he has started to enjoy himself.
"I started as a temporary replacement, and it was supposed to be a short stint in hockey. But now I am begining to love the sport, and I am enjoying myself."
Datuk Sri Shahhidan Kassin threw in the towel, but Tengku Abdullah wil have to battle with incumbent Datuk Sri Redzuan Sheikh Ahmad, Datuk Che Mat Jusoh, Tan Sri Anwar Musa and Datuk Mokhtar Ahmed for the two seats.

Big boost for Razak Cup

RAZAK CUP received a big boost when 100Plus signed a three-year deal worth RM1.5 million with the Malaysian Hockey Federation at a leading hotel in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.
100Plus will sponsor RM500,000 per year with RM300,000 in cash and RM200,000 in kind starting from next year.
MHF president Tengku Abdullan Sultan Ahmad Shah and James Teo, the managing director of F&N beverages marketing Sdn Bhd, witnessed the signing ceremony.
With money in the pocket, Razak Cup is also set to undergo a huge transformation from next year.
The new format will see teams playing at zonal qualifying rounds before competing for the title in a final round.
Teams will be divided into five zones of four each. The five zones are North, Central, South, East and West. The qualifying rounds will be held on a home-and-away basis.
The West Zone will be mad eup of Penang, Kedah, Perlis and Armed Forces.
Perak, Kuala Lumpur, Selangor and National Under-16 will feature in Central zone.
The teams in Southern Zone are Negri Sembilan, Malacca, Johor and Singapore while Pahang, Terengganu, Kelantan and Police are in East zone.
Sabah, Sawarak, Labuan and Brunei will feature in Northern zone.
And at the end of the qualifying rounds, the top two teams from each group will feature in the Division One while the teams that finished third and fourth from each group will compete in Division Two.
by Jugjet Singh

THE Malaysian Hockey Federation (MHF) council mem bers will sail into uncharted territory without a compass and map when they deliberate on changes to their constitution at a leading hotel in Kuala Lumpur today.
Council members know that MHF president Tengku Ab dullah Sultan Ahmad Shah is keen to amend their con stitution and turn the post of secretary from elected to appointed, but as of yesterday, they have yet to receive a draft of the said amendment.
This has deprived them a chance to study and propose any changes, if necessary, before the matter is brought up at today’s council meeting.
A check with several council members yesterday revealed that they have not been given a draft on the said amendment to study, and so, they will be sailing blindly, and the proposal could end up as a wreck.
The proposal is simple, but it might need a strong hand to see it from a draft, to accepted by a 2/3 majority in an Extraordinary General Meeting.
Only then can the MHF implement it by the end of the year, when they hold their elections.
Tengku Abdullah is expected to have his hands full an swering questions from his council members, if they find their voice in his presence. As it stands right now, five states that were called by this scribe have nothing nice to say about the proposal.
The general feeling is that a salaried secretary will feel that he is only answerable to the president, and states might lose their voice on many matters.
Several council members also felt that if the secretary is appointed, there would no longer be a need to have a general manager.
Right now, the elected secretary is Hashim Yusoff, while former international Maninderjit Singh is the general man ager.
And even at present, there is a thin line of demarcation which separates their duties, and many feel having two salaried staff is one too many.
MHF council members have debated the pros and cons of this exercise energetically, when engaged in a conversation, and hopefully, they find their voice at the meeting today.
There have been many precedents where all those with a strong corridor opinion keep quiet when presented with a chance to speak, and it could be the same today.
There is also another matter, involving misappropriation of money, which has been making its rounds among the council members.
If there is proof, bring it up today, but if its only empty talk, quash it with a statement from the Council. If not, this alleged story will continue making its rounds, and eventually ruin the reputation of innocent officials.