Saturday, June 30, 2018

IGP CUP: Terengganu moves into top gear

TERENGGANU qualified for the Division One semi-finals in the Inspector General of Police Cup (IGP Cup) Hockey Tournament at the Wisma Belia Hockey Stadium in Kuantan Saturday.
The east coach state defeated Briged Tenggara 2-1 and Negri Sembilan 3-0 respectively to lead Group B table standings with six points.
In a morning match against Briged Tenggara, Azrul Hisham fired Terengganu into the lead with a 29th minute field goal but Ahmad Nazri Senin restored parity for Briged Tenggara via a penalty corner conversion in the 39th minute. Terengganu, however, upped the ante in the 44th minute for the winning goal from a penalty corner conversion by Muhammad Ashraf Abdul Halim.
They returned in the evening to pulverise Negeri Sembilan 3-0. Azrul Hisham Zahari scored a brace (40th and 46th minutes) while Muhammad Ashraf added the third goal.
Negeri had earlier defeated Perlis 2-1 with field goals from M. Ravinder (4th minute) and Mohd Hafiz Pahror Radzi (24th). Perlis replied through Ruslang Nurain in the 34th minute.
Underdogs Melaka turned the opportunities into goals by carving a 2-0 win over Perlis in a Group B match. It was Perlis second straight defeat in the opening day of the tournament.
“We have only been training together for the last 10 days. It was a good win to earn three points but there is much room for improvement,” said Melaka team manager ASP K. Mahadevan.
“Our penalty corner conversions are at a low rate and I have instructed the coach to improve this area before we go into the remaining matches. We had six penalty corners but converted one,” he added.
Melaka scored through Suher Romzie Jamaluddin (26th minute) and Shamsul Arif Sulaiman (40th minute).
Sabah also earned a brilliant 3-1 victory over Kelantan in a Group A match. The East Malaysian state shifted into top gear after making a return to the tournament following a lapse of 22 years. Sabah last competed in the IGP Cup way back in 1996.
“We are competing once again after 22 years and expectations are certainly high on us. However, I am happy with our performance today and we hope to continue the momentum,” said team manager Supt Shahrul Amir. “We aim to qualify for the semi-finals. That would be a great achievement.”
Mohd Firdaus Abdul Ghani (20thth minute), Samsualan Samsudin (25th minute) and Rozaimay Amir (33rd minute) scored for Sabah via field goals. Kelantan replied through a penalty corner conversion by Mohd Hakimi Muhammad in the 42nd minute.’
In another Group A match, Kedah enhanced their chances of qualifying for the last four with a 2-1 win over Briged Utara.
Nine teams are competing in Division One of the IGP Cup.
Results – Division 1 Group A - Group A: Sabah 3 Kelantan 1; Kedah 2 Briged Utara 1; Group B: Negeri Sembilan 2 Perlis 1; Terengganu 2 Briged Tenggara 1; Melaka 2 Perlis 0; Terengganu 3 Negeri Sembilan 0.

                                P   W   D    L    F    A   Pts
SABAH                   1    1     0    0    3    1     3
KEDAH                   1    1     0    0    2    1     3
BRIGED UTARA    1     0     0    1    1    2     0
KELANTAN            1     0     0    1    1    3     0

                                      P    W    D    L     F     A   PTS
TERENGGANU             2     2     0    0    5     1      6
MELAKA                       1      1    0    0    2     0      3
N. SEMBILAN               2     1     0    1    2     4      3
BRIGED TENGGARA    1     0     0    1    1     2      0
PERLIS                           2     0     0    2    1    4       0

.. only goals to be decided

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian women's hockey team are tipped to win gold in the Hockey Series Open at the Seng Kang Stadium Sunday.
  Only, how many goals they will score against Thailand remains to be jotted down.
  Ranked 22nd and highest in the tournament, Malaysia have yet to lose to the world No 28 Thailand in the last 10 encounters.
  In fact, in 10 matches, Thailand has only managed to score two goals against Malaysia. The most recent was at the Hockey Series pool match, where coach K. Dharmaraj's charges won 4-0.
  "I believe we will prove our No 1 ranking in this tournament right. In the final, we just need to cut off Thailand's counter attacks, and half the battle would be won," said Dharmaraj.
  Dharmaraj fielded two 17-year-olds and one 14-year-old in the Open.
  And how has the three young ladies fared in Singapore? "My experience of being with the ladies team for 30 months indicate that they tend to take some time to mature and setle down.
  "That's one of the reasons I choose to field talented youth early. And amongh the three, Amira is into her third touranment and she finally looked settled with the others.
  "Syafi and Kirandeep (14) will need more time with the team."
  Nuramirah Zulkifli (Amira) has 15 caps, Nurmaizatulhanim Syafi 16 caps, and Kirandeep Kaur played on all five pool matches to earn her maiden caps.
  Nuramirah scored six goals, while Syafi two.
  Malaysia's only 'problem' in this tournament is wasting too many penalty corners and open chances before scoring. This could pose some problems in the Jakarta Asian Games where they will play against higher ranked teams.
  "Ladies generally do not have a 'killer instinct' in term of goal scoring, compared to men. This problem is not only confined to Malaysia, but the whole hockey playing world.
  "This tournament is definitely not to the level of the top-four Asian teams (India, China, South Korea, Japan). However, Hong Kong, Thailand, Kazakhstan and Indonesia will also be playing in the Asian Games and its good that we found out their true form early.
  "As for penalty corner wastages, I am trying to coach a world class drag flicker and that is one reason I keep going for direct flicks instead of using set-pieces.
  "Against stronger teams, we use many set-pieces but here I am giving a chance to my flickers to progress."
  From all teams competing in this first round, a minimum of 15 teams will qualify for one of three separate Hockey Series Finals. 
  Each of the Hockey Series Finals will have eight teams playing in them, and will take place throughout the world, with berths into the Olympic qualification events up for grabs.


        P       W D L GD Pts
Malaysia 4 4 0 0 39 12
Thailand 4 3 0 1 17 9
Kazakhstan 4 3 0 1 7 9
Singapore 4 1 1 2 3 4
Hong Kong  4 0 1 3 -17 1
Indonesia 4 0 0 4 -49 0

Friday, June 29, 2018

Hockey Series Open: Malaysia v Thailand final

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian women's team will play Thailand on Sunday for the Hockey Series Open gold medal at the Seng Kang Stadium.
  Yesterday, Malaysia beat Singapore 5-0 to top the standings on maximum 15 points, while Thailand beat Kazakhstan 4-0 to finish second on 12 points.
  Thailand lost to Malaysia 4-0 in this tournament, and are not expected to stop coach K. Dharmaraj's charges from claiming a golden finish.
  The finalists in Singapore advance to the next stage, yet to be decided by the International Hockey Federation (FIH).
  From all teams competing in this first round, a minimum of 15 teams will qualify for one of three separate Hockey Series Finals. 
  Each of the Hockey Series Finals will have eight teams playing in them, and will take place throughout the world, with berths into the Olympic qualification events up for grabs. 
  Malaysia got their goals off Nur Zafirah Aziz (first), Wan Norfaiezah Saiuti (sixth), Nur Amirah Shakirah Zulkifli (30th), Fatin Shafika Shukri (56th) and Nuraini Rashid (58th).
  "As the highest ranked team in this tournament, of course we want to win gold and even though we did beat Thailand 4-0 in the pool stage, we will not take them lightly in the final.
  "Thailand have always had an ambition to beat Malaysia and so, we can't afford to give them much space on Sunday," said Dharmaraj.
  For the record, Malaysia beat Thailand 2-0 in the 2017 Kuala Lumpur Sea Games final.


                          P  W  D  L  F    A   Pts
Malaysia        5  5  0 0  45 1   15
Thailand 5  4  0 1  25 4   12
Kazakhstan 5  3  0 2  15 12   9
Singapore 5  1  1 3  7          9    4
Hong Kong 5  1  1 3  12 17   4
Indonesia 5  0  0 5  0          61   0

Thursday, June 28, 2018 for the hosts

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian women's hockey team will play Singapore Friday as a warm-up before going for gold in the World Series Open at the Seng Kang Stadium.
  Coach K. Dharmaraj's charges have already made the final with the Singapore match in hand, while Kazakhstan and Thailand will play for the other slot.
  And it does not matter which team follows Malaysia into the final, as Malaysia are the best bets to win gold in the Open.
  "We have already qualified for the final and will wait for the outcome of the Kazakhstan-Thailand match (Friday) to know who our opponents are.
  "It doesn't matter who we play in the final, as the target is still to win gold," said Dharmaraj.
  The finalists qualify to play in the next round, yet to be decided where and when, and have a chance to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
  "Mission one is completed. We qualified for the next round witha match in hand. The second mission will be to realise our top ranking here, by winning gold," said Dharmaran.
  At 22 in the World, Malaysia are higer ranked than Thailand (28th) and Kazakstan (34th).
  And Malaysia did thrash Kazakstan 8-1 and Thailand 4-0 in earlier encounters in this tournament.
  As for Singapore, Malaysia beat them 8-0 in the Asia Cup last year.
  From all teams competing in this round, a minimum of 15 teams will qualify for one of three separate Hockey Series Finals. 
  Each of the Hockey Series Finals will have eight teams playing in them, and will take place throughout the world, with berths into the Olympic qualification events up for grabs. 


        P       W D L GD Pts
Malaysia 4 4 0 0 39 12
Thailand 4 3 0 1 17 9
Kazakhstan 4 3 0 1 7 9
Singapore 4 1 1 2 3 4
Hong Kong 4 0 1 3 -17 1
Indonesia 4 0 0 4 -49 0

Malaysia hammer Thailand

KUALA LUMPUR: The national women's team secured their place in the final of the Hockey Series Open in Singapore after recording their fourth win on Wednesday.
  K. Dharmaraj’s side eased to another comfortable victory, this time emerging 4-0 winners over Thailand at the Sengkang Sports Club to maintain their 100 per cent record in the tournament.
  Thailand had gone into the match as the second-ranked team in the league standings.
  Early pressure on the Thai's paid off when Fazilla Sylvester Sillin opened the scoring in the 23rd minute with Nuraini Rashid making it 2-0 just a minute later. Both goals were scored via penalty corners.
  Nur Amirah Shakirah Zulkifli made it 3-0 with a field goal in the 43rd while Hanis Nadia Onn completed the rout in the 53rd, again through open play.
  Malaysia lead the standings with 12 points having earlier in the tournament beaten Indonesia (18-0), Hong Kong (10-0) and Kazakhstan (8-1).
  Malaysia play hosts' Singapore in their final league match on Friday. Only the finallists will qualify for the second round of the Series Open competition.

Monday, June 25, 2018

Dharmaraj: We always play to break new barriers...

KUALA LUMPUR: National women's coach K. Dharmaraj has been tasked with a steep target in the Asian Games in Jakarta, but he and his charges are game to make a gallant attempt.
  The Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) had categorised the women's team as 'B', where they will have to pay their own expenses to the Asian Games and only reimbursed if they return with a medal.
  Malaysia has always been fifth in Asia, but Dharmaraj aims to break that ceiling in Jakarta from Aug 10-Sept 2.
  "It will not be easy, but whenever I take my girls for any tournament, I always tell them not to fear any team and break new barriers.
  "We have been doing that for the last two years, and will make an attempt to enter the semi-finals, and then go for a medal in the Asian Games," said Dharmaraj.
  Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) deputy president Datuk S. Shamala had said: "Irrelevant of whatever category our women’s team are in, just as our president Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal has said earlier 'the girls are definitely going to feature at the Asian Games'.
  "We believe greatly that all the hard work the entire ecosystem has done tailoring for this edition of the Asian Games for the past 30 months with the dedication and extensive work of coaches Dharmaraj, Lailin Abu Hassan and Roslan Jamaluddin our girls will finish on the podium at the Jakarta Asian Games.".
  Meanwhile, after hammering Indonesia 18-0 and Hong Kong 10-0, the women's team will play Kazakhstan in the Hockey Series Open at the Sengkang Stadium in Singapore Tuesday.
  "We beat Kazakhstan 2-1 in our last meeting, and I expect them to be our toughest opponents in this tournament. We need to be sharper during penalty corners as we missed to many in the first two games," said Dharmaraj.
  Malaysia won 39 penalty corners in two games, but could only score 10 goals.
  "Yes, we had a total of 39 penalty corners in two matches but scored only 10. That's a big concern for me as we need to be sharper in the next two matches against Kazakhstan and Thailand.
  "I expect Kazakhstan to defend and rely on counter-attack. They have really fast forwards who gave us a lot of problems in our last meeting (Asia Cup).
  However in the World League Round Two in Kuala Lumpur last year, Malaysia hammered Kazakhstan 13-1.

Sunday, June 24, 2018

Malaysia 10 Hong Kong 0

Hockey Series Open - Singapore 2018 (Women)


 Malaysia 10 

Hong Kong 0

Saturday, June 23, 2018

Gurdwara Cup: Silver for Selangor Under-18

Goalkeeper Sanjit Singh Randhawa posing with the Selangor side. He only let in 3 goals in the Gurdwara Cup. 

SUNGAI PETANI: The Selangor Under-18 Gurdwara Cup hocky team ended their campaign with a silver medal when they lost to Kuala Lumpur 2-1 in the final Saturday.
  Selangor had beaten Kuala Lumpur 1-0 at the group stages, and their other group results are Selangor 4 Penang 0, Selangor 1 Perak 1 and Selangor 2 Singapore 0.
  The team trains under Olympian Maninderjit Singh and former national juniors coach Balbir Singh. They are members of the Matador Hockey Club.
  It was an amazing feat, considering they only had one under-12 reserve in the 9-A-Side tournament.
  Their average age was only  14.5 years old.

Shamala: Dharmaraj's girls going to Asian Games

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian women started their Hockey Series Open campaign with a sizzling 18-0 win over Indonesia at the Sengkang Stadium in Singapore yesterday.
  And there was more good news for the women, as the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) will be sending them to the Jakarta Asian Games, even though the Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) has placed them on Category B, which is self-funded by the association.
  Yesterday's win was a vast improvement from the 11-0 win at the 2017 Kuala Lumpur Sea Games.
  The women play Hong Kong today, and another big win is expected as when both the teams met at the World League Round Two in Kuala Lumpur last year, coach K. Dharmaraj's charges won 9-0.
  Malaysia, at world n 22, winn then meet Kazakhstan (34th), Thailand (28th) and Singapore (35th).
  Hockey Series Open was known as World League Round One earlier, and it serves an an Olympic qualifier. The finalists move into the next round.
  The match was also historical, as 15-year-old Kirandeep Kaur became the youngest player ever to play with the senior women's squad when Dharmaraj fielded her in the 11th minute itself.
  The 18 were scored by Norfaiezah Saiuti (3rd, 4th, 23rd), Nuraini Rashid (11th, 22nd, 35th), Fazilla Sylvester (14th), Nuramirah Zulkifli (17th, 38th), Nuraslinda Said (19th, 20th, 41st), Nurmaizatulhanim Syafi (24th), Safiqah Mat Isa (26th), Zafirah Aziz (26th, 49th), Surizan Awang (43rd, 60th).
  "We (MHC) received news yesterday (Friday) that our senior women’s team have been re-categorised from A (fully funded by OCM) to B (funded by the National Sports Association) and if we secure a medal finish we will be reimbursed.
  "Irrelevant of whatever category our women’s team are in, just as our MHC President Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal has said earlier 'the girls are definitely going to feature at the Asian Games'," said MHC deputy president Datuk S. Shamala.
  "We believe greatly that all the hard work the entire ecosystem has done tailoring for this edition of the Asian Games for the past 30 months with the dedication and extensive work of coaches Dharmaraj, Lailin Abu Hassan and Roslan Jamaluddin our girls will finish on the podium at the Jakarta Asian Games," said Shamala.


Cracking 18-0 victory for Dharmaraj's charges...

Hockey Series Open - Singapore 2018 (Women)



18 - 0


Friday, June 22, 2018

Asian Games: Women's hockey on Category B ..

Media spotlight.. Abdul Azim (orange stripes) mobbed at the corridors of Olympic Council of Malaysia.

KUALA LUMPUR: Seventeen sports associations tried their luck to travel to the Asian Games in Jakarta for free, but the Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) were in no mood to hand out Hari Raya ang-pows yesterday.
  Games Chef-de-mission Datuk Seri Abdul Azim Zabidi said they stood by the fourth-best mark for qualification on merit.
  Athletes who travel on Category A will be fully sponsored while those who go to the Games on Category B will have to boot their own expenses, and need to win a medal to be reimbursed.
  "We received 17 appeals but only entertained the addition of three officials and 10 athletes, while many were rejected based on their ranking and past achievements.
  "Athletes or teams need to be fourth best in Asia to travel on A, while the rest will go on B. Earlier our contingent was 570 athletes and officials, and now 583, which is still a manageable size," said Abdul Azim at Wisma OCM.
  Women's hockey, earlier reported to be in category A, will travel on B, if the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) is willing to foot expenses.
  "Women's hockey is ranked fifth in Asia and the earlier confusion was because they had finished fourth in the Asian Champions Trophy, but that was not one of the tournaments used as a yardstick.
  "They appealed, but we said no to them," said Abdul Azim.
  Among the other notable sports' appeals to Caregory A which were rejected are -- men's soccer, women's badminton team, men's three-on-three basketball, handball, kabaddi, silat, sepak takraw, shooting, artistic swimming, table-tennis, jet-ski and rugby.
  And with a bigger number of athletes than the previous Games in Incheon, Abdul Azim expects the number of medals to be about the same or more than the 33 won.
  "We will have more athletes than 2104 in South Korea, so realistically, I will be expecting them to at least win 33 or more medals in Jakarta," said Abdul Azim.
  Malaysia won 5-14-14 in South Korea.
  And on the drink diving issue, Abdul Azim feels an apology from the national divers is enough said, and done.
  "The divers have apologised, and so they will be competing in the Asian Games. Period."
  Three Podium Programme divers — Pandelela Rinong, Nur Dhabitah Sabri and Chew Yiwei — as well as four juniors Jellson Jabillin, Gabriel Gilbert Daim and Kimberly Bong and Tracy Vivian Tukiet were involved in a party during the Chinese New Year, where they consumed beer.

Dharmaraj: Go for gold, with due respect..

Kirandeep Kaur (left) playing against boys at the recent Matador HC tournament at the National Stadium in Bukit Jalil.

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian women's coach K.Dharmaraj wants nothing but gold in the Hockey Series Open starting in Singapore today.
  Malaysia, at world n 22, will open accounts against Indonesia (no ranking) while the other teams are Hong Kong (world no 43), Kazakhstan (34th), Thailand (28th) and Singapore (35th).
  Not one to boast without a reason, Dharmaraj cautioned his charges to be confident, but at the same time respect their opponents.
  "We are the highest ranked team here and are expected to win the tournament even though the top-two qualify for the next round," said Dharmaraj.
  "But then again, we need to respect every team as overconfidence can cause many problems."
  Hockey Series Open is a rebranding exercse by the International Hockey Federation (FIH) and was known as World League Round One. It serves an an Olympic qualifier.
  For the record, Malaysia hosted the World League Round Two last year and won a silver medal against much higher ranked teams.
  And on Indonesia: "Our opening match will be very interesting as Indonesia is coached by Malaysian (M.) Mahendran. Although they are not ranked by the FIH, we will not underestimate them."
  Dharmaraj also included 15-year-old Kirandeep Kaur in the squad, a player who will earn her first international cap.
  "Kiran proved during training she is no pushover even though she is only 15, and she is not here for a holiday. She can expect to be utilised when a game situation warrants," said Dharmaraj.
  Whatever the outcome in Singapore, Kirandeep has made history for herself as becoming the youngest player to be selected for Malaysia's senior side.

Monday, June 18, 2018

MHC Competitions Committee yet to welcome new members

KUALA LUMPUR: After writing a 'Thank You' note to eight competitions committee members on Feb 26, manager Brian Fernandez has yet to send out a 'Welcome' notice to new members until Monday.
  The Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) have been running their skeleton crew competitions committee since then, chaired by George Koshy and managed by Fernandez.
  As a re-cap, the competitions committee had “retired” eight of their members about four months ago after their term expired, and are still looking for new blood for another term.
  Manager Brian Fernandez had said back then, that he was instructed to write the “Thank You” emails to all their members by chairman Koshy.
  The previous members, who served for a year, said they only attended one meeting on June 10 last year.
  And now, the 'competitions committee' has recommended to do away with Division One in the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL) next season, leaving about 10 clubs in jeopardy.
  The plan is to host only the Premier Division, and this has not gone down well with many states who run clubs as well.
  A state secretary who declined to be named questioned the validity of the competitions committee's decision.
  "Have they recruited new members from states to fill up seats vacated by the eight members? If not, who decided to remove Division One from the MHL?," questioned the secretary.
  When contacted, Kooshy said: "After the new Competitions committee members are informed and they accept their appointment, I’m sure MHC will update the media.
  "Any changes (to the MHL format) will only be known after it (the matter) has been deliberated by the competitions committee at their next meeting," said the chairman.
  The competitions committee were tasked with revamping the sagging MHL and they decided to only host the Premier Division next year.
  Eight teams have registered for the Premier Division and they are  University Kuala Lumpur (UniKL), Terengganu Hockey Team (THT), Maybank, Tenaga Nasional, TNB Thunderbolts, Nur Insafi, Penang Hockey Club and UiTM.
  Last season, six teams competed in Premier Division while 13 teams in two groups in Division One.
  But the MHC are only interested in about 10-12 teams to play in the Premier.
   Among the Division One clubs which will be hit hard if MHC carry out their plan are Politeknik-KPT, PJCC Tigers, Pahang Juniors, Kedah HC, RMAF Rajawali, Selangor and Ipoh City Council -- to name a few.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Sarjit: Re-think plan to scrap Division One

KUALA LUMPUR: Former national coach and Olympian Sarjit Singh feels the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) should have a re-think about their plan to scrap Division One from next season's Malaysia Hockey League (MHL).
  MHC's competitions committee, chaired by George Koshy, were tasked with revamping the sagging MHL and they decided to only host the Premier Division next year.
  Eight teams have registered for the Premier Division and they are  University Kuala Lumpur (UniKL), Terengganu Hockey Team (THT), Maybank, Tenaga Nasional, TNB Thunderbolts, Nur Insafi, Penang Hockey Club and UiTM.
  "The plan to scrap Division one is not in tandem with development in mind, as it will deprive many players from having a platform to gain experience after they are no longer eligible for the JHL (Junior Hockey League).
  "MHC must ponder about their priorities. If they only want to see a small group of players competing in the MHL, then they can do away with the Division One.
  "But if they want to develop a larger pool of players, then Division One is a very important tournament," said the former national captain who played at the 1984 Los Angeles and 1992 Barcelona Olympics.
  In the MHL, Sarjit had played for Tenaga Nasional and Yayasan Negri Sembilan.
  Last season, six teams competed in Premier Division while 13 teams in two groups in Division One.
  But the MHC are only interested in about 10-12 teams to play in the Premier.
  "If this becomes a reality, those who don't make it for the Premier will only have an option to play in the state leagues as well as Razak Cup, and no other avenue to showcase their talent."
  Among the Division One clubs which will be hit hard if MHC carry out their plan are Politeknik-KPT, PJCC Tigers, Pahang Juniors, Kedah HC, RMAF Rajawali, Selangor and Ipoh City Council -- to name a few.

MHC plan to scrap Division One

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) may organise only the Premier Division in next year’s Malaysia Hockey League (MHL).
The confederation plans to scrap the Division One competition, a move which will deprive up-and-coming players from at least 10 clubs an avenue to hone their skills.
MHC's competitions committee, tasked with reviving the MHL, came up with a plan to only have 10 to 12 teams in the Premier Division next season.
"Yes, our revamp will only see teams competing in the Premier Division, while there will not be a Division One next season," confirmed competitions committee manager Bryan Fernandez.
Last season, six teams played in the Premier Division while Division One attracted 13 teams.
Only eight teams sent in their entries for next year’s Premier Division.
They are University Kuala Lumpur (UniKL), Terengganu Hockey Team (THT), Maybank, Tenaga Nasional, TNB Thunderbolts, Nur Insafi, Penang Hockey Club and Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM).
Missing from the list were Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC), who won the Charity Shield and finished second in the league as well as the TNB Cup last season.
For the record, KLHC won the Premier Division six times and were crowned champions five times in the TNB Cup.
MHC are hoping that at least four more teams will play in the Premier Division next year.
Among the Division One clubs which will be hit hard if MHC carry out the culling are Politeknik-KPT, PJCC Tigers, Pahang Juniors, Kedah HC, RMAF Rajawali, Selangor and Ipoh City Council.
However, there is a glimmer of hope
"If clubs and states put up a strong case we might consider reinstating the Division One competition. We have plenty of time to think about it, as it will only be held next year," said MHC president Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Beat Pakistan or Balik Kampung awal...

KUALA LUMPUR: World No 12 Malaysia are drawn in Group D, literally group of DEATH, in the men's World Cup in Bhubaneswar, India, on Nov 28-Dec 16.
  World No 4 Netherlands, World No 5 Germany and Pakistan are our opponents, and if Malaysia fail to finish top-three in the group, its an early Balik Kampung on Dec 10, as there are no classification matches at 13th-16th.
  The fourth placed teams in the four-group format will pack and go home.
  Group A has Argentina, New Zealand, Spain, France; Group B: Australia, England, Ireland, China; and Group C: Belgium, India, Canada, South Africa.
   The top four teams qualify for the quarter-finals automatically, while the second and third placed teams play cross over matches to determine the other four teams.
  So, Malaysia must finish top three of there will not be any classification matches for them to improve on their world rankings, ahead for the World Series, which Malaysia hope to host and qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
  The early indications are that Malaysia need to beat Pakistan at all cost to stay alive.
  "Going by our world ranking, we knew roughly before the groupings were released that we will be placed in a tough group. But it's the World Cup, there are no easy teams and we have been preparing for any eventuality," said Malaysian coach Stephen van Huizen.
  Going by form, if Malaysia finish third in Group D, they will face either Belgium or India, who are expected to finish 1-2 in Group C.
  "We need to move up the world rankings to have a better chance of qualifying for the Olympics (if we do not win the Asian Games gold), and so, Pakistan or one of the other two teams must be beaten. No two ways about it," said van Huizen.
  This is only the second time 16 teams will play in the World Cup, the first was in 2002 Kuala Lumpur where Malaysia finished eighth.
  Van Huizen's men open accounts against Netherlands on Dec 1, Pakistan on Dec 5 and Germany on Dec 9 -- with plenty of rest time in between to recover.
  For the record, Malaysia rarely get a chance to play Germany and Netherlands, while Pakistan will be challenged in the Jakarta Asian Games.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

MHC: It's not just a re-branding exercise

KUALA LUMPUR: A new development plan to replace 1Mas is expected to kick off in July, and its not just another re-branding programme said Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) president Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal Tuesday.
  1Mas, incepted in 2010, suffered a natural death when the RM11 million alloted to it was all spent up early this year. Some claimed it was wisely spent, while others claim the money was not wisely utilised, as the programme overlapped many others.
  "The new development programme will start in July as we have found a sponsor to carry out activities. It will replace 1Mas, but it is not just another re-branding exercise, but to help develop the sport in a big way," said Subahan.
  MHC deputy president Datuk Dr S. Shamala was also present.
  Players from sports schools, project schools, Tenaga Nasional's Thunderbolts programme as well as Universiti Kuala Lumpur's (UniKL) hockey club, were also training in the 1Mas programme and it was a messy affair.
  However, at a meeting attended by state affiliates in Bukit Jalil yesterday, some of the problems faced by 1Mas were thrashed out and it was agreed that the main pitfalls will be avoided in the new plan.
  1Mas director Tai Beng Hai briefed state affiliates on the previous programme. And after much discussion, it was decided to forge ahead with fresh ideas.
   MHC Technical Director Terry Walsh said: "The problem here is everybody is claiming a hand in developing the said players and I believe they all had a hand somewhere along the way. But lets look at the bigger picture, in the end, the players will play for Malaysia and the benefit will be for everybody."

Monday, June 11, 2018

1Mas: From bad to good in Sabah

KUALA LUMPUR: Sabah Hockey Association (SHA) secretary Avtar Singh was fuming when asked about the 1Mas Programme which was recently axed by the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC).
Incepted in 2010, and after RM11 million was spent, 1Mas will soon be replaced by another development programme by MHC.
That is because the money for 1Mas has run out, and it overlapped many other development programmes.
There was also confusion as players from Sports Schools, Project Schools, Tenaga Nasional's Thunderbolts programme as well as Universiti Kuala Lumpur's (UniKL) hockey club, were also said to belong to 1Mas.
The critics claimed that it became a merry-go-round circus, with the same players wearing different jerseys coming for training at different venues and days.
"The previous 1Mas programme, helmed by Lim Chiow Chuan (director), did not listen to suggestions or complaints from the states. I was banned from the programme, because I did not want to sign claims which were done without training sessions being conducted.
"They banned a state secretary for speaking out and standing up for the truth. Those were terrible days," remembered Avtar.
However, after a change of guards and Tai Beng Hai becoming director, Avtar was reinstated.
"The previous management did not want to listen to anybody, they ran the show on their own accord. I was reinstated in 1Mas Sabah once Beng Hai took over and paid back my dues from the day I was suspended.
"For Sabah, 1Mas under Beng Hai, has produced many talented players for the state and it did not overlap with the Sabah Sports School’s (which was formed in 2013) hockey programme, and in a way, we are fortunate about it.
"We have active centres in Lahad Datu, Tawau, Kudat, Keningau and Beaufort. They have steadily produced players every year, for our sports school.
"For us, 1Mas had a bad impact in the beginning and turned into gold in the end," said Avatar.
Kuala Lumpur HA secretary V. Rajamanickam, who also felt that the 1Mas was poorly run, wants accountability in a new programme by the MHC to replace 1Mas.
"States have been called up for a meeting Tuesday to discuss a new programme to replace 1Mas. I will suggest an accountability body be set up within the MHC to look into money spent on development programmes as well as to look into the overseas stints of junior and senior teams of both genders.
"This is to make sure every sen is spent wisely, and overseas stints should be matches against the best players of the said countries and not just travel for the sake of travelling and fulfilling a planned fixture," said Rajamanickam.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Rajamanickam: 1Mas Hockey Programme strayed from its target

KUALA LUMPUR: The 1Mas Hockey Programme started as a noble project in 2010, but ended as a total waste of the RM11 million allotted to it by the previous government.
  This is the opinion of Kuala Lumpur HA secretary V. Rajamanickam.
  The objective of the 1Mas programme, which was scrapped last week, was to develop players who did not even know how to hold a hockey stick. 
  It was to widen the pool and provide structured coaching for teenagers so that they have good basic hockey skills.
  The 1MAS coaching centres were supposed to act as feeders to the various state age group teams.
  "But after a few years, 1Mas moved away from its objective when those who were running it found out that progress was too slow. They started to inject players from Project Schools, Sports Schools and other hockey playing schools for fast results.
  "This was done to make it look good on paper and justify the money spent,” lamented Rajamanickam who has served hockey for more than two decades.
  Rajamanickam has worked under many presidents and other officials who came and left in KLHA, as well as the Malaysian Hockey Federation (MHF) who later became Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC).
  He has voiced out his opinions in many MHF/MHC meetings without fear or favour.
  "Everything went downhill when the previous 1Mas director, Lim Chiow Chuan, revamped it after three years. I wrote a letter to 1Mas about the pitfalls that came with the revamp, but I never received a reply from anyone,” said Rajamanickam.
  “The revamp further fuelled the need to include more established players, to get higher rewards and salaries.
  1Mas centres were re-categorised from Class One to Four, with Class One being for the best performers and Class Four for the poorest.
  Chiow Chuan had said in November, 2013 that the classification of centres would determine the amount of allowance payable to coaches and support staff. This meant that a well-run centre, which achieved its objective, would get better funding, Rajamanickam added: "Coaches were getting paid double, as some were also involved in 1Mas and Project School, as well as other development projects run by MHC.
  ”It became a race to make 1Mas centres look good and earn more money, and everybody forgot about the orignial objectives — to help those who do not know how to play hockey and widen the base of social as well as club players.
  “And now, the MHC want to plan for a similar programme with a new name.
  "I hope they do not make the same mistakes and waste not only money, but also one generation of players who ended up neither here nor there. This time there must be more accountability," said Rajamanickam.

1Mas: These are our achievements...

By Nurjannah Ali

 UNTUK rekod selepas lapan tahun program 1MAS dijalankan, program tersebut berjaya mencipta sejarahnya tersendiri apabila kesemua pemain yang bakal beraksi di Sukan Olimpik Remaja 2018, Argentina bagi kategori lelaki merupakan pemain kelahiran program tersebut.

Selain itu, tujuh daripada sembilan pemain perempuan yang beraksi di Kelayakan Sukan Olimpik Remaja 2018 Zon Asia yang berlangsung di Bangkok Thailand baru-baru ini yang menyaksikan Malaysia menamatkan persaingan di kedudukan ketiga merupakan pemain yang turut bernaung di bawah program yang sama.

Berikut merupakan antara kejayaan lain 1MAS dalam tiga tahun kebelakangan ini bagi memastikan pemain-pemain yang mengikuti program tersebut berjaya mendapat tempat dalam skuad hoki kebangsaan, negeri dan Liga Hoki Malaysia.

 2018: TNB Liga Hoki Remaja Malaysia: 65% pemain dan bekas pemain 1MAS mendapat tempat.
Kejohanan Hoki Kebangsaan B-16: 71% pemain daripada program 1MAS.

 2017: TNB Liga Hoki Remaja Malaysia: 63% pemain dan bekas pemain 1MAS beraksi.
Piala Sultan Johor: 72% pemain di bawah program 1MAS.
Kejohanan Majlis Sukan Sekolah Malaysia B-18: 75% merupakan pemain 1MAS
Kejohanan Hoki Kebangsaan B-16: 75% pemain daripada program 1MAS

 2016: Kejohanan B-16 Mannheim Jerman: 83% pemain daripada program 1MAS.
SUKMA: 44% pemain 1MAS beraksi.

 2015: Piala FHE, Perth: Skuad lelaki 1MAS muncul juara untuk kali kedua selepas menjuarai kali pertama pada 2012. Pasukan lelaki 1MAS menewaskan Sekolah Sukan Bukit Jalil dan Sekolah Sukan Negeri Sabah serta wakil Australia, Australia Warriors pada 2015.

1Mas: A re-branding in progress...

By Nurjannah Ali

Konfederasi Hoki Malaysia (KHM) tidak akan berhenti daripada menjalankan program pembangunan malah kini dalam persediaan untuk melancarkan program yang diberikan nafas baru daripada program terdahulu 1MAS dalam masa terdekat.
  Timbalan Presiden Kanan yang juga Pengerusi Pembangunan KHM, Prof Dato’ Dr Shamala Subramaniam menjelaskan KHM terus komited untuk menjalankan dan meneruskan program pembangunan bagi memastikan sukan hoki terus mempunyai pelapis dan penstrukturan baru yang akan diperkenalkan adalah salah satu langkah untuk membawa program pembangunan hoki ke satu tahap yang lebih baik.
  “KHM telah membuat penelitian terhadap keberkesanan program dalam beberapa aspek bagi memastikan kualiti program terus berada di tahap teratas. Antara yang dinilai semula termasuk menilai jumlah pusat latihan yang mungkin akan memperlihatkan sedikit kelainan kerana kami telah mengkaji dari segi skala geografi untuk mengoptimumkan keberkesanan program.
  “Kami juga melihat ada berlaku pertindihan program jadi kami akan menggabungkan program tersebut agar fokus, kualiti akan dapat terus dipertingkatkan daripada program 1MAS sebelum ini dan ingin saya tegaskan disini kami tidak melancarkan program baru sebaliknya menambahbaik daripada program lama serta memberikan nafas baru untuk diangkat ke tahap yang lebih baik,” jelas Dato Shamala.
  Dalam perkembangan yang sama, menurut Pengarah Pembangunan KHM, Tai Beng Hai, program 1 MAS yang diilhamkan pada tahun 2010 oleh Kebawah Duli Yang Teramat Mulia Tengku Mahkota Pahang Tengku Abdullah Al-Haj Ibni Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah mendapat peruntukan dana sebanyak RM 11 juta daripada kerajaan untuk digunakan dalam tempoh lima tahun dan ketelusan pihak pentadbiran mengendalikan dana yang diberikan, dana tersebut dapat bertahan sehingga tujuh tahun selain program 1MAS telah diselaraskan dengan teliti secara bersama oleh Ketua Pengarah Majlis Sukan Negara dan Presiden KHM.
  “Program 1MAS merupakan cetusan idea KDYTM Tengku Abdullah Al-Haj Ibni Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah dan ia merupakan projek pembangunan jangka masa panjang untuk melahirkan pemain elit muda dan bersedia untuk beraksi di peringkat antarabangsa.
  “Dana diperolehi daripada kerajaan sebanyak RM 11juta untuk digunakan bagi tempoh lima tahun (2010 – 2015) dan kerana pihak pengurusan menggunakan dana dengan telus serta bijak menyelia dana yang diberikan kami dapat menggunakan dana tersebut untuk tempoh tujuh tahun sehingga 2017.
  “Program 1MAS mempunyai 43 pusat latihan dan 67 jurulatih bagi lelaki serta 14 pusat latihan  dan 25 jurulatih bagi perempuan, dan kerana ia merupakan program yang bagus serta dapat membimbing pemain-pemain muda ketahap yang lebih tinggi jadi pihak KHM telah memikirkan untuk membuat penstrukturan semula program ini mengikut keperluan semasa dan diselaraskan mengikut hala tuju KHM selain mahu menggunakan cara pembangunann yang lebih dinamik seperti dari sudut untuk mempertingkatkan ilmu kejurulatihan dan pendedahan pemain kepada teknik-teknik serta konsep terkini melalui website dan teknologi video,” jelas Beng Hai.

Kirandeep, Hasya given golden chance...

KUALA LUMPUR: National women’s hockey coach K. Dhaarmaraj has made a surprise move by calling up teenagers Kirandeep Kaur and Hasya Syahida Saifuddin to join the national team’s training camp.
Kirandeep and Hasya, who are 16 and 17-years-old respectively, attended training since Monday as part of a group of 26 players, as Dharmaraj has to make do without forward Nurul Nabihah Mansur who is pregnant.
"I have called up more younger players of late, regardless whether the player is as young as 16-years-old because the women’s hockey scene differs from the men’s,” said Dhaarmaraj.
"It is getting difficult nowadays to find young, talented players, so if I come across those with potential, I won’t think long and hard and will call them up to join the national team as trial players.
"In fact, India captain Rani Rampal who is now 23-years-old started representing her country at the 2010 World Cup when she was just 15-years-old. So if she can play on the international stage at such a young age, why can’t our own young players with talent such as Kirandeep and Hasya do the same?”
Such a scenario is nothing new for the national team, because since last year itself Dhaarmaraj has called up seven players under the age of 18 to train with the senior side.
Out of the seven players, three of them, Nurmaizatul Hanim, Syafi Sheikh Fuad and Nuramirah Syakirah Zulkifli have already played in two international championships while Nor Asfarina Isahyifika Issahidun earned her first cap during the Asia Champions Trophy in Donghae, South Korea just last month.
According to Dhaarmaraj, he first took notice of Kirandeep and Hasya’s budding talents during this year’s Malaysia Hockey League competition.

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Champions Trophy: Good for Malaysia as well..

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia will head for Perth to play in at least five friendlies against Australia in the run-up to the Jakarta Asian Games on Aug 19-Sept 1.
  The Games champion will receive direct entry into the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, and Malaysia have set their mind on grabbing that historic ticket.
  And while Malaysia will play with the Aussies at the end of the month (with the composition of the Australian team yet to be known) Asian Games challengers India and Pakistan will be competing in the last edition of the Champions Trophy in Netherlands, on June 23-July 1.
  The other Asian teams which Malaysia must beat for gold in Jakarta are South Korea, China and Japan (qualified for Olympics as hosts).
  And when Malaysian coach Stephen van Huizen was asked about India and Pakistan's preparation: "Both the teams will be getting maximum exposure at the Champions Trophy, and I expect them to gain important exposure playing against top teams in the world ahead of the Asian Games."
  The other teams in the Champions Trophy are Netherlands, Australia (2014 World Cup champions), Argentina (2016 Olympic champions) and Belgium (2016 Olympic silver medallists).
  But there is also a plus factor for Malaysia in the Champions Trophy, where India and Pakistan will play the first match.
  "We will be able to watch Pakistan and India play in a real competitive tournament atmosphere and it will reveal how much both the teams have progressed and will also give us some insight on what to expect from them in Jakarta," said van Huizen.
  Pakistan have improved much under new coach Roelant Oltmans from Netherlands, as they held Malaysia to a 1-1 darw in the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games recently.
  "We drew with them 1-1 barely a week after Oltmans took over, so it would be interesting to see how much they have improved under the Dutch coach in the Champions Trophy. We can learn much about their form, from their matches in the Netherlands."
  The Champions Trophy was incepted in 1978 by Pakistan's Air Marshal Malik Nur Khan and the Pakistan Hockey Federation, and this will be the last tournament as the International Hockey Federation (FIH) will no longer host it anymore.
  Malaysia will be trying to break their jinx of winning the Asian Games Gold medal in Jakarta, as the highest was a silver medal in 2010 
Guangzhou, China, where Pakistan won 2-0 and qualified for the 2012 London Olympics.
  For the record, Malaysia last played at the Sydney 2000 Olympics.