Thursday, November 6, 2014

Beng Hai's turn on coaches' Musical Chair

TAI Beng Hai looked shell-shocked when he was named as the national seniors coach by Malaysian Hockey Confederation vice president Datuk Nur Azmi Ahmad.
   What was supposed to be a Team Management Meeting to chart next year's plans turned out to be a veto decision taken by the MHC president Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah as even the Coaching Committee did not meet to decide on this matter.
  And while the MHC are still on the hunt for a foreign coach, former national coach Beng Hai will sit on this ongoing coaches' musical chair.
  "Beng Hai has been named by our president to coach the national seniors for the World League Round Two in Singapore, and Arul Selvaraj will now concentrate on the juniors," said Nur Azmi.
  The Round Two will be held from Jan 17-25 and Malaysia, the top seed, must finish among the top-three to qualify for the World League Semi-finals which offers entry into the Rio De Janeiro 2016 Olympics.
  Beng Hai, who is coaching Sapura in the Malaysia Hockey League, will only have his men when the MHL ends on Dec 14. Fitness could be his main problem.
  "All the national players are in the MHL and I believe their respective clubs also conduct physical training and they should be ready when to report in good shape at the end of the MHL.
  "Although I will only have one month for centralised training, I will also be approaching MHL teams to release their players at lease once a week to train with me," said Beng Hai.
   Arul, who wore three hats before yesterday, is pleased that he will be able to fully concentrate on the juniors for the Junior Asia Cup at the end of next year.
  He is also free to coach UniKL in the MHL as his contract allows it.
  "As I said before I am ready to coach any level, and now that I have been fully entrusted with the juniors, my focus will be much more specific," said Arul.
  In the World League Round Two Malaysia, ranked 13th in the world, will play Bangladesh, Japan, Poland, Singapore, Oman and Ukraine. One more team will be the winner of the last Round One tournament which will be played in Suva, Fiji from Dec 6-13. The teams involved are Fiji, Samoa, Papua New Guinea and Vanuatu.
  Malaysia need to finish in the top three to make the semis cut and play either in Belgium or Argentina.
  On another note the MHC have yet to submit the minutes of the EOGM held during the Sultan of Johor Cup to the Sports Commissioner's office and this could delay the elections slated for early next year.

Explosive MHL weekend..

TERENGGANU Hockey Team's five South Koreans finally arrived to help their cause in a crucial Malaysia Hockey League Premier Division weekend.
  Terengganu and Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC), with two wins each, are the early favourites, and will go head on this Sunday to decide who is the best in Round One action.
  But before that, THT must overcome Maybank, while KLHC face Sapura today.
  "We have been playing with 14, as Engku Malek was injured, while the Koreans only arrived today (yesterday) and we had light training in the evening. Now, my bench is much stronger and I believe we will take the advantage going into the Second Round if we win six points this weekend.
  THT after demolishing UniKL 7-0 to put to the grind by Tenaga and could only play to a narrow 2-1 win.
  The Koreans - Kang Moon Kyu, Seo Jong Ho, Kang Moon Kweon, Bae Jeong Seok, and Jang Jong Hyun, are expected to give Maybank a torrid time.
  Defending champions KLHC are growing in strength as they beat Tenaga 5-3 in Charity Shield and then a convincing 4-1 win over Maybank last Sunday.
   “We went into the match (against Maybank) just looking for three points and we did not expect to get an easy win. We were fortunate to take an early lead and pushed on from there,” said KLHC coach K. Dharmaraj.
  Today, winless Tenaga and UniKL will be going for their first points: "I think overall the team played well against THT last Sunday. It was a tight match and we had many good chances, I’m very happy with the way my team performed. But the thing that we have to work on is our ability to finish off our chances in front of goal,” Saif Tenaga coach Nor Saiful Zaini.
  FRIDAY: Sapura v KLHC (6pm, Pitch I), UniKL v Tenaga (6pm, Pitch II), Maybank v Terengganu HT (8pm, Pitch II).
  SUNDAY: Maybank v UniKL (6pm, Pitch I), KLHC v Terengganu HT (6pm, Pitch II), Tenaga v Sapura (8pm, Pitch II).


           P W D L F A Pts

TERENGGANU 2 2 0 0 9 1 6
KLHC       2 2 0 0 9 4 6
SAPURA     2 1 1 0 4 3 4
MAYBANK    2 0 1 1 3 6 1
TENAGA     2 0 0 2 4 7 0
UNIKL      2 0 0 2 1 9 0