Monday, December 3, 2012

101 years old because he runs for his life

Turbaned tornado coming in: Fauja arriving to flag off the Chardikala Fun Run at Padang Astaka in Petaling Jaya.
PETALING JAYA  (THE STAR): A tragedy drove the world's oldest marathon runner to the sport but running has now become Fauja Singh's “medicine” and is the secret to his longevity.
The 101-year-old said he only started running in his 80s, after his eldest son Kuldeep Singh died in an accident.
“Running helped me cope with the loss,” said the British national, who was in Malaysia for the Chardikala Fun Run at Padang Astaka here yesterday.
“Running and walking have become my medicine and are part of my routine now,” he said. “I simply have to do it.”
Fauja added that he walked an average four hours a day but would go “all out” and run for 10 miles once every eight days.
The centenarian said he started with 100m sprints until a friend recommended that he tried running marathons.
Pumped with bhangra: Runners dancing before the run. Pumped with bhangra: Runners dancing before the run.
Fauja, who was an Olympic torchbearer at the Athens Games in 2004 and London this year, looks at it as an opportunity to represent the Sikh community.
Nicknamed “The Turbaned Tor-nado”, he said other runners' good wishes gave him the energy to keep on running.
“My favourite marathon experience was in New York after 9/11, where turbans and beards were a no-no.
“People told me to pull out and even said I might be shot at. I decided to take my chances, as what better way to die than while running.

World League, Asia Cup or bust...

A GOLDEN Goal from Peter Caruth gave Ireland a sen sational extra-time victory over Malaysia to claim the bronze  medal at the Champions Challenge I in Argentina.
  And in the final, hosts Argentina whitewashed South Korea  5-0 to claim their Champions Trophy fame.
   Malaysian coach Paul Revington was heartbroken with the  sudden-death failure, but:  “I’m sad for the moment but I am  excited about the future as in balance, what the team has  done in the last six weeks has been terrific.”
   Will McCabe gave Ireland a dream start with a breath- taking strike from the right, picking up a pass from Michael  Watt before hammering a low drive beyond the despairing S.  Kumar in the third minute.
     However, Malaysia’s confidence was restored in the 18th  minute thanks to Ismail Abu, who got a crucial touch in the  circle to tie the scores at 1-1.
   The Malaysians started looking more like the team that had  impressed so much in the early part of this tournament, but  the Irish upped their game and moved ahead when Conor  Harte fired home a penalty corner eight minutes before half  time.
   Ireland’s failure to put the game out of the reach of  Malaysia cost them dear in the 50th minute, when Faizal  Saari produced a moment of brilliance.
    A Malaysian counter-attack found Faizal on the half way  line, with the attacker running fully 40 meters before  unleashing a fierce strike into the roof of the Irish net to make  the score 2-2.
    Malaysia thought that they had won the match in normal  time when Nabil Fiqri was on hand to tap in following another  great save from David Harte in the 67th minute.
    Incredibly, Ireland went straight down the other end and  levelled the scores at 3-3, with Conor Harte netting another  penalty corner variation to delight the Irish fans in the  crowd.
    Harte’s goal sent the match into extra time, and in the 80th  minute, Peter Caruth surged into the circle and smashed an  unstoppable reverse stick shot into the Malaysian net before  wheeling away in celebration.
    Malaysia skipper Sharun Nabil was also optimistic: “We  had a lot of chances, but didn’t take them. That’s why we lost  the match. We were not organised in defence, which allowed  them to score the golden goal. All in all, we had a great  tournament in Argentina, but we have to work really hard to  improve.”
    Revington and his men will have two chances to qualify for  the 2014 World Cup. The first is the World League which  starts in May, and the next is the Asia Cup on Aug 24-Sept 1  in Ipoh.
    Malaysia will play in Round Two of the World League on  May 27 to June 2 in Elektrostal, Russia. And for company,  they have Austria, Egypt, Japan, Russia and Ukraine.
    Malaysia will play in Round Two of the World League on May 27 to June 2 in Elektrostal, Russia. And for company, they have Austria, Egypt, Japan, Russia and Ukraine.
   Malaysia needs to finish amongst the top two in Russia to move into the Third Round which will comprise of eight teams each in Germany and Holland.
     And from there they need to finish amongst the top four to make the final round, and in the process seal a spot in the 2014 World Cup.
    The World League would be the easier route, as in the Asia Cup, Malaysia will be up against South Korea, India, Pakistan and Japan.

Mlaysia v Ireland in FIH pictures

Argentina gold, Malaysia fourth...

Host nation Argentina have won the Argentina Hockey Men’s Champions Challenge 1 thanks to a stunning 5-0 win against Korea.
It was a truly brilliant performance from the South Americans, who totally dominated the world number 7 to seal a place in the next edition of the FIH Champions Trophy. Agustin Mazzilli, Gonzalo Peillat, Pedro Ibarra, Guillermo Schickendantz and Manuel Brunet were the scorers for Argentina, delighting a huge partisan crowd in Quilmes.
Argentina were hugely impressive in the first half of the final, and snatched an early lead when Agustin Mazzilli pounced on a loose ball in the Korean circle to score and send the home fans into raptures.  Gonzalo Peillat added a second goal two minutes from the end of the half with a blistering penalty corner, rattling the backboard with a perfectly executed low effort. 
The home side won a succession of penalty corners at the end of the first half, but their failure to convert their chances left Korea very much in the game for the second half.  However, Argentina added a third goal at the very start of the second period, with Pedro Ibarra taking on the flicking duties with another brilliant penalty corner effort. 
Korea went in search of a much needed goal, but an error in their own circle cost them another penalty corner. Again, there was a different player taking the flick, with Guillermo Schickendantz sending a high shot into the roof of the net for his fifth goal of a remarkable debut tournament.
The fifth and final goal was a beautiful move from Argentina, passing their way through the Korean defence before Manuel Brunet tapped in from close range to seal an epic victory.   
The competition final brought to an end a hugely entertaining event, with all of the matches being played in great spirit under glorious sunshine.  
Argentina forward Lucas Vila was named as the Player of the Tournament thanks to some outstanding displays for his team, while the Goalkeeper of the Tournament Award went to Ireland’s David Harte. Korea’s Jong Hyun Jang finished as the tournament’s top goal scorer thanks to eight penalty corner strikes, while Japan were given the Fair Play award for receiving the lowest number of disciplinary cards.  
The bronze medal went the way of Ireland, who defeated Malaysia 4-3 thanks to a golden goal from Peter Caruth.  It was a remarkable achievement for a team playing in their first ever Champions Challenge 1, and one that their players will never forget.  The full report can be found by clicking here.
Earlier in the day, Japan took fifth place with a 4-2 win over Canada, while South Africa took seventh place by beating Poland 4-1. Reports for both of these matches can be found by clicking here.

Final Standings:

1: Argentina (Promoted to the Champions Trophy)

South Africa


Player of the Tournament:
Lucas Vila (ARG)
Goalkeeper of the Tournament:
David Harte (IRL)
Top Goal-scorer:
Jang Jong Hyun (KOR) – 8 goals.
Fair Play Award:

Informationn on team arrival..

Since MHC has removed me from their mailing list, opting not to send me any information on hockey, I shall not bow as low as these characters and provide you with information.
 The National Team, having sought details from the Team Manager, will be arriving at KLIA on Wednesday, Dec 5 at around 1350H.
 My friends from the media, this is the latest info I received and its provided should some of you want to know about this detail and wish to make your way to KLIA. And hopefully some concerned and supportive MHC officials who place hockey above self interest will make it there as well.

Satwant Singh Dhaliwal (sometimes right, sometimes left)
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