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Showing posts from January, 2012

Mother's love.

We've heard so much of Zulfadli Zulkifli. He is the first ever Malaysian to be the World and Asian junior champion and won both titles in the same year.

Some of us have also heard about his father cum coach Zulkifli Sidek.

But what about his mother Hanny Pranatyo (pic)?

Just like any other loving mother, Hanny gave up her job to dedicate her life to her three children.

"I’ve sacrificed a lot but I have no complaints," said Hanny.

Read all about Hanny, Zulkifli and Zulfadli as a full page has been dedicated to the family in today's Mailsport.

Note: Pic was snapped by The Malay Mail's Arif Kartono

HD says: It was fun talking to Zulkifli and Hanny.

FAM League could be scrapped.

Another coach, speaking on anonymity for fear of being penalised by FAM for “speaking against policy matters”, added the insurance payment fiasco should have been addressed by the national body earlier and not at the eleventh hour.

“Did the competition committee just wake up by suddenly deciding to meet the teams and asking them to pay up before the league starts hardly a week later?” he questioned. - as published in today's Mailsport.

The letter (pic) was sent out on Jan 25.

Need I say more?

HD says: Special meeting at 3pm on match-fixing. Let's see how that goes.

Hardi: Imports need a reality check.

The Malay Mail undergoes ANOTHER relaunch.

That aside, Felda United player Hardi Jaafar (pic) is no stranger to the domestic and international scene.

I have always enjoyed speaking to Hardi for he is among the few footballers who are able to give their thoughts - diplomatically or otherwise - without hesitation.

So it was a pleasant surprise when I received a phone call from Hardi on Saturday. Hardi said he was tired of Felda being bashed and mocked after their clash against Negri Sembilan. The Negri team won 1-0 at the Paroi Stadium.

There were claims that Hardi was subject to foul language and was spat at. Rumours around the stand has it that the person who threw the bottle at Felda's goalkeeper Hamsani Ahmad was close to the Negri Sembilan Menteri Besar.

They are after all rumours.

Below is Hardi's take as published in today's Mailsport. Note, while Hardi has apologised on many platforms including on his facebook page and on Era FM, it is his comments toward the import player…

Another FAM bashing...

And it is once again by The Star's Eric Samuel.
Eric touches on football corruption in his latest article.
THE only ones shocked by the latest revelations of match-fixing in the M-League must have been the FA of Malaysia (FAM). But that shouldn’t come as a surprise as they are such a clueless and ineffectual bunch.FAM largely operate on snooze mode with minimum effort and enterprise. Cosseted in the comforts of Wisma FAM in Kelana Jaya, they would rather not have to deal with issues and problems. Hence the pathetic state of Malaysian football.I bet this is not a great start to a blissful Sunday morning. HD says: OUCH!

Doctors against 1Care

I first wrote about the government's 1Care for 1Malaysia October last year.

Earlier today, I received an email which is apparently being circulated to General Practitioners nationwide.

They are still against the idea of a single health care system and have set up a facebook page a twitter account.

Below is the email sent out to doctors;

Dear All,

Good job on the setting up of the facebook site - http://www.facebook.com/taknak1care. Thanks $&*%#@.
Let us be united and stick to the facts in order to counter this 1 Care thing. The facts are so:
1. This 1 Care Plan is detrimental to our medical profession, whether GP, Specialist, private or public doctors, presently practising doctors and future doctors.

2. It is not law yet and there is still something every doctor can and should do to stop this being shoved down our throats.

3. The way forward MUST involve political clout and action because it ultimately involves legislation -- it is good to read that there is already movement in that di…

Oh Thiru....

Let's look at two scenarios.
Scenario 1 Mario Balotelli (Manchester City v Tottenham Hotspur)
Mario Balotelli will serve his four-match ban after Manchester City opted not to appeal against his suspension. The controversial Italian striker appeared to stamp on Tottenham midfielder Scott Parker's head during Sunday's 3-2 win at the Etihad Stadium - before his last-minute penalty winner kept City three points clear of the Barclays Premier League.
Read the full report here.
Scenario 2V.Thirumurugan (Kedah v Kelantan)
Insiden V Thirumurugan (Kedah) pijak Mohammed Ghaddar (Kelantan) dalam aksi Liga Super Kedah vs Kelantan (pic) 20 Januari 2012, Stadium Darul Aman. Thirumurugan bagaimanapun terlepas hukuman kerana terlepas pandang insiden pijak berkenaan.
Watch the video here.
With Astro Arena now showing the matches live and a major sponsor of the Super League, it would be impossible not to get recordings of the matches. Otherwise, we can always count on youtube.
Those who watched Balo…

Let's 'vandalise' some walls.

I've known Joe Ipoh when the country was once famous for hosting the Asian X-Games during Hishamuddin Hussein's tenure as Sports Minister.
While the hosting rights valued at RM3 million raised eyebrows, the minute but loyal X-Games community were happy. They were finally being recognised.
Sadly, it didn't last for long as the subsequent ministers had no intention of "spending" money on the sport.
After all, not all of the skateboarders and wall climbers were registered voters or were simply too young to vote at the previous General Election as the ministry spends money on activities to win the heart of the youths.
Joe and Company has been surviving with small time tournaments locally although they have been competing abroad. There is also the Persatuan Ekstreme Malaysia but I've not heard much from them since the regional X-Games.
Well Joe will be at the launch of a skateboard and streetart event called Sibling (pic) at the Annexe Gallery (near Central Market) to…

Johor prince takes over football

I'm here to Inform the People of Johor that I've Officially Taken Over Johor Football Association as the President of Johor Football. My Goal and Intention is to Kick Out the Politics and bring Back the Glorious Days of Johor Football to The People of Johor. At the same time I will also do My Best to Improve All Sports in Johor. I have Urged the State Government and Majlis Sukan Negeri to play more Roles in terms of Sports Activities and Educating the Youth to Excel thru Sports with the Aim of having them to do more Productive and Positive Activities for Their Future.

That was taken from the twitter account of Tunku Mahkota Johor Tunku Ismail Ibni Sultan Ibrahim published on the social site on Jan 24.
The Star ran a story here.
We do have royalties helming FAs. Pahang ruler Sultan Ahmad Shah is president of the FA of Malaysia (FAM). His son Tengku Abdullah is the deputy president.
The Johor royalty are rather, let's say "hands on", and I do expect some "interest…

Wishful thinking

Are we kidding ourselves with our Thomas Cup ambition?
Liew Daren (pic) claims he is all fired up to make a cut in the final.
But world No 1 Lee Chong Wei seems to be more realistic by saying the Thomas Cup squad may struggle to even qualify.
The fact remains Hafiz Hashim is the next best Malaysian singles player at Number 34 in the world standings while Wong Choong Hann is ranked 50.
I doubt positive thinking alone will not help the Thomas Cup squad qualify.
HD says: Oh well...

Contractors at the mercy of workers

My closest encounter of being in the construction line was undergoing industrial training at a construction site in Kepong while pursuing my education in civil engineering.
The six months training was an eye opener, from witnessing how workers catch a monitor lizard for their dinner to the Immigration Department raiding the site to nab illegal workers.
While still in the midst of celebrating the Lunar New Year, I spoke to some contractors about the latest in the scene.
We spoke about new technologies but most importantly why construction work - from developing a house to refurbishing homes - is becoming expensive.

"The high costs of materials is just one of the factor. But then again, most accessories and parts (taps, basins, storage tanks) are made in China so the prices are still OK," said a contractor.
"The problem is the foreign workers-lah. They are holding us at ransom. They dictate their wages and are arrogant enough to tell us if we can't pay them, they will go e…

Happy CNY!

May the year of the water Dragon bring luck, wealth and happiness to all of you.
As the Hokkiens would say, Keong Hee Huat Chye!
And now, back to what we do best during CNY......

A note to sports officials

Just before we all enjoy the rather long break, here's a note to sports officials in the country.

Most of you are incompetent. Instead of just accepting that fact, please strive to do something about it.

Talking from the outside is easy, as some of you might say. Perhaps. But then again, certain decisions made by you certainly defies logic.

You have the likes of Rizal Hashim and SS Dhaliwal commenting about the scene constantly, not forgetting our mainstream Media friends. Yet Rizal is currently facing the wrath for speaking about playing ON TIME.

Dhaliwal is often accused of being "personal" in his writings although his current critical writings on the national hockey scene should not be taken for granted.

Rest assured, you don't need to pay us RM6 million or beyond for FREE advice.

A quick chat with journos will reveal most major newspapers no longer carry results and highlights of the M-League in their first edition. Only in their second edition. Second editions are usu…

Who is the bookie?

A source, meanwhile, said the bookie who had allegedly offered the RM100,000 was believed to be a former Malaysian international player who quit the game last season.The source said the bookie was well-known for his activities among the football fraternity and it had been going on for some time.

In one incident, during his playing days, the bookie had scolded a teammate for scoring a goal which gave his side a 2-0 win instead.
This was taken from today's NST. Read more here.So who is the bookie? I bet your guess is as good as mine.Sepandai-pandai tupai melompat, akhirnya jatuh ke tanah juga. Silap langkah, hang pun akan jatuh juga.That aside, here are tonight's match ups.Selangor v Sarawak (National Stadium, 8.45pm)Prediction: Selangor 1 Sarawak 0Negri Sembilan v Felda United (Paroi Stadium, 8.45pm)Prediction: Negri 2 Felda 1KL v PKNS (Hang Jebat Stadium, 4.45pm)Prediction: KL 1 PKNS 1Sabah v LionsXII (Likas Stadium, 8.15pm) Prediction: Sabah 0 LionsXII 0Terengganu v T-Team (Sul…

Why Malaysia can never host the World Cup...

Simply because we don't serve beer in the stadium!
This is not a joke as the Brazilian authorities have been asked to lift their ban of serving beer in the stadium during the 2014 Fifa World Cup.
Fifa General Secretary Jerome Valcke said the right to sell beer must be enshrined in a World Cup law the Brazilian Congress is considering.
"Alcoholic drinks are part of the Fifa World Cup, so we're going to have them. Excuse me if I sound a bit arrogant but that's something we won't negotiate," he said.
Read the full article in BBC here.
We have had problems getting teams over in the past as many of them were sponsored by beer companies.
Liverpool had not visited Malaysia during their Carlsberg days and only flew over to KL when banking giants Standard Chartered took over last season.
This was an issue when Chelsea played at the Shah Alam Stadium in 2008. The Blues were then sponsored by beer giants Heineken. Refresh your memory here. Ironically, there are two big breweri…

Kes rasuah lagi

Hardly a month and the M-League is already courting various controversies.
While we still await for the insurance bungle to be sorted out and continue to be baffled over the registration of import players, match-fixing has surfaced.
Nothing new as bookies have been eyeing on our players for many years. So expect no difference this season despite the joint effort between the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission and the police.
Perlis FA believes nine of their players are on the take, as reported here.
Meanwhile, the new registration deadline set on Fe 13 has seen quite a number of teams wanting to ditch their current signings for better ones. Suddenly teams are claiming their foreign talents lack the 'talent'.
Some teams even hired injured players and now complain they don't have a lethal strike force. Read more here.
Oh well, you buy an old car and you expect it to perform like a brand new machine?
HD says: I once again say it has been an interesting start to the 2012 season.

Back to school for Nazmi

Nazmi Faiz Mansor raised eyebrows and won the hearts of many especially throughout the Jakarta Sea Games last year.
He also skipped his SPM examinations for national duty, and the team defended their Sea Games gold medal.
But coach Ong Kim Swee is not about to cut him any slack. Kim Swee set up a meeting with Nazmi's father Mansor Mustafa, Bukit Jalil Sports School principal Marina Chin and several Education Ministry officials to ensure Nazmi is prepared for the SPM examinations this year.
It's back to school for Nazmi, as reported in today's Mailsport.
HD says: Kena beli bekas pensel baru, buku baru, stokin baru....... all the best lad!

Akmal is desperate...

Update: Akmal scores two goals as Perak defeated Negri Sembilan 2-1.

---------

...for the right reasons.
He has not scored a goal yet as Perak host Negri Sembilan at the Perak Stadium in Ipoh in their third match in the Super League tonight (kick off 8.45pm).
Akmal Rizal Rakhli (pic) is eager to place his name in the score sheet and gun for the golden boot at the end of the season.
Akmal did shine last season and despite some claim he has "passed his prime", the modest and humble Akmal is eager to silence his critics.
As the fans would say, Kejor Yob Kejor.
Read more of Akmal in today's Mailsport.
Prediction for today's matches.
Perak v Negri SembilanPrediction: 1-1
Felda United v Selangor Prediction: 1-2
Sarawak v Terengganu Prediction: 0-2
T-Team v Sabah Prediction: 2-0
LionsXII v KL Prediction: 2-0
PKNS v Kedah Prediction: 2-1
Kelantan v Johor FC Prediction: 3-1
HD says: It's been awhile since I balik Taiping. Hmm...

J-League JV

The FA of Malaysia (FAM) are in the midst of talking with their counterparts from the J-League in a bid to join forces for the development of football in the country.

FAM deputy president Annuar Musa met up with several J-League officials at PJ Hilton last week, as reported in today's Mailsport.

Hopefully, we could learn something from the Japanese and ensure the league is run "professionally".

No more gaji sangkut, EPF sangkut, insurance tak bayar, jadual berubah, lesen kad pemain belum siap etc.

Malu lah.

HD says: Let's hope for a good outcome.

Told you so!

The BA of Malaysia (BAM) will form a three-man high performance committee headed by its secretary Ng Chin Chai to beef up the efforts to win Malaysia's first gold in the London Olympics, as reported in today's NST. Chin Chai will be assisted by Datuk James Selvaraj and National Sports Institute's Col (Rtd) Wong Ah Jit.On Dec 22, 2011 I wrote about Ah Jit's possible involvement with BAM, as seen here.
On Jan 4, 2012 I said that BAM could form a committee instead of hiring one person for the job, as written here.
Ngo kong jor! (it means "I told you so" in Cantonese).

HD says: And the day has only started....

FAM extends registration of imports

The FA of Malaysia (FAM) extends the deadline of the registration for foriegn players to February 13, as reported in today's NST.
Need I say more?
Tonight's Super League fixtures as featured in Mailsport.

Selangor v Perak (National Stadium, 8.45pm)Prediction: Selangor 2 Perak 2
Kedah v LionsXII (Darulaman Stadium, 8.45pm)Prediction: Kedah 0 LionsXII 2
KL v T-Team (Hang Jebat Stadium, 4.45pm)Prediction: KL 0 T-Team 3
Terengganu v Felda United (Sultan Ismail Nasiruddin Shah Stadium, 8.45pm)Prediction: Terengganu 2 Felda United 1
Johor FC v Negri Sembilan (Pasir Gudang Stadium, 8.45pm)Prediction: Johor FC 1 Negri Sembilan 1HD says: ..................................

Football uprising?

Been getting a whole lot of phone calls lately.
Quite a number of state FAs and clubs seem to have a bone to pick with the FA of Malaysia (FAM). And they are using every excuse in the book to try and undermine the national body.
The latest is the guidelines to hiring the import players.
Apparently a complaint will be lodged to why certain states - particularly Selangor and Kelantan - were allowed to "flaunt" the regulations.
This is in light to the teams hiring Lebanese players Ramez Dayoub (Selangor), Zakaria Charara and Mohammad Ghaddar (both Kelantan).
Sadly, the guideline of hiring the import players on FAM's website seems to be "missing" (pic).
Thankfully, we have another alternative website and it reads;
5. The Foreign Player to be selected should comply with the following playing status:-- Only Foreign Players playing in Division 2 and above are allowed from the Confederations listed below:
Union of European Football Associations (UEFA)Confederation of African …

FAM will investigate

I bumped into FA of Malaysia (FAM) deputy president Annuar Musa (pic) at a hotel in PJ yesterday.

I caught Annuar as he was heading towards his red Porsche Panamera.

He had only five minutes to spare and I quickly asked him about the insurance bungle I exposed on Wednesday.

Annuar said he was "concerned" and promised to "investigate the matter" - as published in today's The Malay Mail.

He was careful with his words, not wanting to offend any party. But his facial expression could not hide his disappointment.

Annuar Musa also promised to find out why certain players were not handed their player's license although registered with the national body.

Perhaps such matters will be raised during the 'special' competitions committee meeting which the Press were only informed of yesterday.

HD says: Talking to so many people about this insurance and player's license has given me a soar throat. Or should I blame it on the durians?

Saman FAM

It's not been a pretty start to the season for the FA of Malaysia (FAM).

First, the national body has got a lot of explaining to do - which they have yet to do so - about the mind-boggling insurance scheme seen in 2011.

Now, the Terengganu Chief Minister Ahmad Said (pic from Berita Harian Online) has threatened to pull the state team and T-Team out of the Super League over the ineligibility of Terengganu foreign signings to play in the Super League.
NST's headline states FAM threatened while Berita Harian reported Saman FAM.

Here's a question.

Fifa ruling clearly states there should not be any government interference in football. How can an MB dictate the fate of the team?

But here's a catch. It is an open secret that most teams and even the national team receives funding from the government - may it be State or from the Sports Ministry.

So how ah?

HD says: Solution simple. League run privately. Full stop.

Structured NSAs

THE Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) believe there should be a proper organisation structure and pay scale for employees of the National Sports Associations (NSA).

This was in reference to the “Developing the capacity of National Sport Associations” report by Brian Minikin and Prof Leigh Robinson from the University of Stirling.

OCMwould like to see NSAs stand on their own feet and be financially sound to avoid interference by other parties especially the National Sports Council (NSC).

Apparently, Malaysia Athletic Union deputy president Karim Ibrahim quit as chairman for the national body’s coaching committee after complaining the coaches were “not listening to him as they were all under the payroll of NSC.”

Read all about it in today's Mailsport.

HD says: About time.

"No insurance".

Here are the facts:

1. The 2011 M-League season started on Jan 29, 2011.

2. AmAssurance agent Ikhwan Ibrahim sent the FA of Malaysia (FAM) an invoice on Nov 27, 2010.

3. The first payment to the insurance company was only made in April, 2011.

4. Negri Sembilan physiotherapist See Kim Leong passed away on Feb 5, 2011.

5. Kim Leong's wife Audrey McLeod has not received a single cent as she was told her husband was "not insured".

Players and officials in the M-League were not insured for the first four months of the 2011 season.

Read the insurance bungle and a widow in dire straits in today's Mailsport.

What if a national player had died on the field while playing for his state team or club?

HD says: Enough of excuses lah.

Let the games begin

The Super League (football) starts tonight.
The main attraction would surely be the match between Singapore's LionsXII and Kelantan at the Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore.
Fresh from winning the Sultan Ahmad Shah Cup, Negeri Sembilan are eager to prove their worth by defeating Selangor at the Paroi Stadium tonight.
Here are my matchups as published in today's Mailsport.Negri Sembilan v Selangor (Paroi Stadium, 8.45pm)Fresh from winning the Sultan Ahmad Shah Cup, Negri are determined to prove their win was no flash in the pan. Despite a string of ‘youngsters’, the Deers are capable of outplaying Selangor in Paroi. Nevertheless, Selangor are eager to start on a good footing and could settle for a draw.Prediction: Negri Sembilan 1 Selangor 1Perak v Terengganu (Perak Stadium, 8.45pm)Terengganu may have enjoyed success last season but they have lost several players and would now have to start fresh. Perak, meanwhile, still have the majority of last year’s players including Akmal Riza…

Nicol bags World Series

Squash queen Nicol David (pic) made it a memorable weekend for Malaysian sports after she won the World Series Finals in London yesterday.
Nicol defeated Irish lass Madeline Perry 11-9, 11-9, 11-9 in the final.
Earlier, he fellow state athlete Lee Chong Wei had won the Korea Open Super Series men's singles title.
This is Nicol's 57th Wispa title. With a perfect start to the year, the Penangite is expected to nail a whole lot of titles this year.
Athletes like Nicol and Chong Wei do not come by every day. They are exceptional so it will be unfair to expect a similar pedigree of athletes any time soon.
However, it is instrumental to narrow the gap between such athletes and their peers. We need both the quality and quantity of good athletes especially during major tournaments.
Perhaps there is a need of organising more local tournaments to ensure the masses are well represented.
HD says: Well done Nicol.

Wah lau Wei!

It was a perfect start to the New Year.

World No 1 Lee Chong Wei unleashed the Dragon in him to edge arch rival Lin Dan of China 12-21, 21-18, 21-14 in the Korea Open men's singles final hours ago.

That's a good start for the Penangite as he now gears up for another possible mouth watering clash with Lin Dan in the Maybank Malaysia Open which starts on Tuesday.

Had Chong Wei lost in Seoul, I'm sure many would have raised the presumption that he desperately needs the services of former coach Misbun Sidek.

Now that he has won abroad, would the same critics say that Tay Seu Bock and Rashid Sidek still aren't good enough?

Food for thought.

HD says: Winning the Malaysia Open would be a treat for Chong Wei ahead of the Chinese New Year.

Barca, Man U to invade KL.

There are efforts to get Spanish giants Barcelona FC and Manchester United to play in KL.
I was reliably informed that verbal discussions have been made about Barca and Manchester United - as reported in today's Mailsport.
However, a source said the discussions are too "pre-mature" and nothing has been finalised. The possibility of Man Utd playing in KL is better though.
Apparently, Barcelona are looking at an Asian Tour this year with China and maybe Indonesia, Malaysia or India as their destinations. The Spanish team held talks with government officials in China and closed a deal with an Internet giant there recently. They were also in India last year to toy with the idea of tapping into the Indian market.
The Red Devils, meanwhile, last visited KL in 2009 and registered 3-2 and 2-0 wins over the Malaysian selection.
It will certainly be a treat for football fans after KL host three EPL clubs - Arsenal, Liverpool and Chelsea - back to back at the National Stadium in Bukit …