Pic: Subahan (right) with new deputy George Koshy.
BUSINESSMAN George Koshy tore the formbook apart when he beat early hot favourite Datuk Nor Azmi Ahmad to become the new men's deputy president in the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) yesterday.
George, also a former Kuala Lumpur HA president and Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club owner, narrowly beat Azmi 16 to 13 votes.. even though when nominations closed he only had one from KL, while Azmi received 10 nominations.
In the women's section, S. Shamala was voted in as the deputy president when she beat K. Maheswari 17 to 12 votes.
A total of 29 delegates cast their votes after the Annual General Meeting in Kuala Lumpur.
The seven vice-presidents who will run the MHC show for the next four years are Datuk Wan Ahmad Nizam (28 votes), Datuk Ow Soon Kooi (28), Satish Kumar (25), Manjit Majid Abdullah (24), Datuk R. Radhakrishnan (24), Nik Zarah Nik Kadir (27) and S. Nagula (19).
Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal is the sixth MHC president, as he won unoposed when nominations closed on April 28.
Immediately after elections, Subahan held a meeting with the new council, and appointed a Chief Operating Officer and Treasurer.
"After discussing with the new members, we have decided to appoint former international K. Logan Raj as the CEO while the treasurer's post will go to S. Selvendran," said Subahan.
The windfall that Subahan received yesterday was when out-going president, for two terms from 2008, Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah announced that he will help clear MHC's debt which is about RM2.6 million.
"I wish the new council all the best, and would also like to state that I will clear the debts so that they can start on a fresh slate. And I hope they can achieve what I could not, that is to take the national team into the top-10 bracket in the world (Malaysia are 12th ranked now)," said Tengku Abdullah.
Subahan was elated, but said MHC will have to find their own cash and not depend solely on Tengku Abdullah, who was yesterday made into MHC Honorary President.
"I would like to thank Tengku Abdullah for his gracious gesture to clear all our debts, but we in the MHC must also work hard to make sure the money comes in and there are no more shortages," said Subahan.
Azmi, who held the post of team manager, immediately resigned after losing: "Now that new people have been elected to helm MHC, I hope they will be able to pay all those they owe money to. I would also like to announce my immediate resignation as national team manager."
Incoming deputy president Koshy said: "Now the work starts, and we need to immediately solve some matters with careful planning. I thank the delegates who placed their confidence in my hands."
The immediate task at hand for Subahan and his council is to appoint a manager and sort out some coaching problems.
"Yes We need to look into team manager and also Neil Howgood's tenure with the national team as soon as possible. So I will meet the players by next week and hold a discussion with them before making a decision.
"As for the coaches, I have met with chief coach Tai Beng Hai and assistant coach Stephen ven Huizen and will also make a decision soon on Hawgood who is still hired as a consultant," said Subahan.
The Malaysian team will play in the Belgium World League Semi-finals which is a qualifier for the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, and they need to finish among the top-four to play in Brazil.
Hawgood was hired as consultant for six months, and his tenure expires before the WL Seni-finals on June 20 to July 5.