Saturday, August 2, 2014

Malaysian men and women finish seventh

GLASGOW: The Malaysian women’s hockey team finished seventh in the Glasgow Commonwealth Games when they beat Canada 3-0 in a penalty shootout after both teams were tied at 2-2 in regulation time at the National Hockey Stadium.
On Friday, Canada took the lead in the 15th minute off a penalty corner goal by Abigail Raye but Malaysia fought back to equalise through Fatin Shafika Mohd Sukri in the 48th minute.
Canada regained the lead with a field goal by skipper Catherine Gills in the 55th minute but Malaysia again hit back, this time through Nurul Nabihah Mansur’s field goal in the 66th minute.
Both teams tried but failed to find the winning goal, forcing the game to be decided on penalties.
In the shootout Malaysia’s Juliani Mohd Din, Siti Noor Amarina and Silin Fazilla converted the first three attempts while Canada’s players fluffed their lines.
   The men beat hosts Scotland 2-1 to also finish seventh.
 Scott Chris Grassick put the hosts ahead in the 11th minute, but goals from Shahril Saabah (25th) and Ahmad Kazamirul (30th) saved the blushes for Malaysia.
   For the record, in the group stages, Malaysia beat Canada 2-0, lost to England 8-1, lost to Trinidad and Tobago 4-2 and lost to New Zealand 6-1.

Manjit: I will propose for change...

MANJIT (left)

NATIONAL hockey coach K. Dharmaraj has deleted his FB account, and now the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) might just delete him from the coaching set-up before the Asian Games.
   Dharmaraj, who walked onto a minefield before the Commonwealth Games when he posted on FB that the MHC management is very weak, and that it should not manage the hockey body like people who still live in caves, or on trees.
   He received, and replied to a show-cause letter on that FB posting days before leaving for Glasgow.
    Dharmaraj had written on his FB:
   “Kenapalah pentadbiran kita lemah sangat.... Susah sangat ke, nak didik semua.....
   “...Jangan lah mentadbir macam orang duduk dalam gua atau duduk atas pokok....”
   (“Why is our administration weak ... is it so difficult, to guide everyone...
   “....Don’t administrate like people living in caves or on trees...”).
    “In my personal opinion, Dharmaraj and the present coaches should be removed from the set-up before the Asian Games which is just 50 days away,” said MHC senior veep as well as coaching chairman Manjit Majid Abdullah.
   This came about after Malaysia lost 4-2 to Trinidad and Tobago, after being whipped 8-1 by England.
   “I will put forward that proposal in the next coaching committee meeting, and it would be up to the committee  to decide and endorse, if they approve of my motion,” said Manjit.
    The World Cup was also a disaster as Malaysia lost all their matches and ended at the bottom of the pool.
   Before the World Cup, 10 senior players had a meeting with MHC president Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah and asked for the coach to be removed.
   An MHC official confirmed the meeting, but wanted to remain anonymous: “The meeting did take place and 10 senior players wanted Tengku Abdullah to remove coach Dharmaraj before the World Cup as they had many issues with him.
   “But Tengku Abdullah did not want to rock the boat, and the outcome is for all to see,” said the official.
   Manjit believes al is not well and there is an element of anger among the players which needs to be addressed before the Asian Games, which offers a ticket to the 2016 Rio Olympics.
   “We need to address the situation fast, as there is distrust and other issues between the coach(s) and players. It does not look like we are ready for the Asian Games, but we need to have a team which will put up a fight, and not fight among themselves.
   “The new low was losing to Trinidad and Tobago, and now we need to rise from the ashes,” said Manjit.

Looks likeDharmaraj's days are numbered

By Aftar Singh

GLASGOW: National hockey coach K. Dharmaraj is as good as a “dead man walking”.
    The Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) coaching committee chairman Manjit Singh Abdullah wants Dharmaraj sacked after the national team’s woeful performance in the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.
   The national team had, before heading for Glasgow, finished last in the 12-team World Cup in The Hague, Holland.
   They began their Commonwealth Games Group B campaign with a 2-0 win over Canada but it proved to be just a temporary respite.
   In their second match, the Malaysians were handed an 8-1 thrashing by England.
   Then came the straw that broke the camel’s back as Malaysia suffered a humiliating 4-2 loss to minnows Trinidad and Tobago on Tuesday, followed by another heavy loss – 6-1 to New Zealand on Thursday.
   The loss to world No. 29 Trinidad was the worst ever for world No. 13 Malaysia.
   It was the tiny Caribbean nation hockey team’s first win in the Games since making their debut in Manchester in 2002.
   As much as Manjit wants Dharmaraj booted out, MHC senior vice-president Datuk Nur Azmi Ahmad reasoned that it’s not as easy as that.
    “Although Manjit wants Dharmaraj sacked, we cannot simply terminate his services,” said Azmi in a telephone interview on Friday.
   “We have to study the two-year contract he signed in May just before the national team left for the World Cup in Holland.
   “We will get our lawyers to study the contract and see if there’s any clause that says we can sack him without paying any compensation.
    “We will have a meeting soon with MHC president Tengku Abdullah (Sultan Ahmad Shah) to discuss Dharmaraj’s future.
   “During that meeting, we will also study the national team’s World Cup report.”
   Nur Azmi admitted that the loss to unheralded Trinidad was unacceptable.
   “We cannot stomach the humiliating defeat. It is really demoralising to MHC and the nation.
   “We will meet Dharmaraj next week to find out the reasons for the team’s failure in the Games.”
   Asked if there is a plot among the players to undermine Dharmaraj, Azmi said that he too had heard such talk.
    “We need to talk with the players to know if they are indeed unhappy with Dharmaraj,” he said.
    Dharmaraj was appointed national coach in January when South African Paul Revington resigned.
   On Thursday, Dharmaraj hit out at his critics for condemning him and the team after their loss to Trinidad.
   He had said: “We all tend to assume that Malaysia are a great team when, in actual fact, we are not.”