Skip to main content

Thank you Rajagobal!

Haresh Says, as published in The Malay Mail today.
Dear Datuk K. Rajagobal,
 
I cannot imagine what went through your head as you spoke to journalists for the final time as the national coach at Wisma FAM yesterday.

I am sure it was a humbling experience, having enjoyed the limelight during your early days after replacing B. Satianathan in 2009.

You have seen it all, having played alongside the late Mokhtar Dahari with Selangor before graduating to represent the national team in the 1980s. You tried your hand in coaching, starting with PKNS FC before enjoying stints with Selangor and Kelantan.

Naturally, your abilities caught the attention of the FA of Malaysia for you were tasked to guide the national Under-19 team before climbing up the ladder to the senior team.

Some had questioned your appointment then. But you silenced them almost immediately as the national team bagged the gold medal at the 2009 Laos Sea Games.

The Tigers continued their winning ways after emerging victorious in the 2010 Asean Cup.
The two wins – although deemed petty by your staunchest critics – created a new phenomenon among Malaysians. The young and old, men and women, boys and girls, they all spoke a common language and it was called football.

It united the masses. Fans ditched their Premier League jerseys and wore the national stripes proudly. They finally felt the sense of pride, something money cannot buy.

Politicians too jumped onto the bandwagon as the popularity of the sport was overwhelming. It is thanks to the national team’s successes that the government channelled an initial grant of RM10 million into the National Football Development Programme in 2010. It was all about football that to a certain extent, the other sports felt a little left out.

Your efforts even earned you a Datukship in 2011.

But the successes did not last for long. Fans became hungry for more. The skeptics then questioned why Malaysians were celebrating mediocrity when we should be winning competitions beyond the South-East Asian region.

Among the losses was the 6-4 (aggregate) defeat to Singapore in a World Cup qualifying match in 2011. Losing to the islanders was a bitter pill to swallow.

The team failed to defend the Asean Cup last year after losing 3-1 (in aggregate) to Thailand in the two-legged semifinals.

Fans would also remember the 1-1 draw against Bangladesh in an international friendly last year.
Everyone then started sounding like a coach. They questioned your line-up and even implied favouritism. Fans were angry with national body and they took it out on you.

Some ridiculed when you used words like “positive”, “experiment” and “ranking tidak penting” (ranking not important). They called it excuses.

For the record, Malaysia were placed 161st in the Fifa ranking in April 2009 and are now at 158.
The mounting pressure even got to your employers, who had on the sidelines admitted they decided against extending your contract as it was the “hot topic at present”.

But being your polite self, you took the decision with stride. As you mentioned yesterday, you will never turn your back on FAM and the country and will not hesitate to return if your services are required.
You stressed there is still hope for Malaysia to qualify for the 2015 Asian Cup, with one match remaining (against Yemen on March 5) and that you are proud of the boys.

You also took a swipe at former players who are quick to criticise but have done little at the grassroots. You highlighted more needs to be done by the state FAs in developing new talents.

The four years must have been an experience of your lifetime. Now, it is best for you to spend quality time with your family before charting your future plan.

You have played your part and I’m sure you have no regrets.

Thank you Rajagobal. Now we look forward to a different chapter in Malaysian football.

p/s: Hopefully we will be able to catch up for some kolkatte over tea soon.

Yours sincerely.

HARESH is editor (investigations and special projects) of The Malay Mail. He can be reached at haresh@mmail.com.my or on Twitter @HareshDeol

Comments

  1. Haresh, of course he will have no regrets coz he received a big fat salary from FAM!!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Terima kasih K Rajagobal. Adios for now. But hey, B Sathianathan and other earlier coaches made some good teams with the M League. Come back and join lah!

    ReplyDelete
  3. It is a sorry state of affair for anyone to coach our National teams.

    However, Raja, manage to do what others failed to do for more than 20 years, clinching the AFF & SEA football gold, even tough there appears suspicion in their footballing feat - Steve Darby should have the insight.

    Football in Malaysia are faced and riding on with many weaknesses and hopelessness, for anyone wishing to be part of it. Coaches most often will become the scapegoat, whenever matters came to a boiling point and doesn't work out as expected. Fortunately, coaches in Malaysia have become used to the hopelessness and weaknesses which is embroidered and accompanies the sport. The inability of our coaches to go abroad and secure jobs are also among the main reason why they're willing to dwell among the "dead souls" in FAM and State FA's.

    Until and when our coaches are capable to leave the "nest," only then we can heap praises on them.


    HSKL says: Explore and conquer beyond your limitation.


    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

What went wrong with KL SEA Games?

145 gold medals.
It's the best Team Malaysia has ever achieved since the inception of the SEAP Games in1959.
The 29th edition of the SEA Games in Kuala Lumpur ended yesterday. The opening ceremony dazzled those at the stands and viewers at home while the performances during the closing ceremony yesterday jogged plenty of musical memories to many.
Our athletes, the real superheroes, brought smiles through their heroic display. They made everyday a happy day.
Kudos to the officials - from the coaches, the National Sports Institute and National Sports Council - for their hard work in ensuring our athletes perform to their best.
But it was not all memorable.
From

'World fashion disaster' in KL

World Fashion Week Asia 2017 ended over the weekend.

And the launch on Friday at Palace of the Golden Horses at Mines Resort City just outside Kuala Lumpur turned out to be a forgettable night.

Why?

It was poorly organised.

Just as many are trying to get over the nightmare witnessed throughout the KL SEA Games, the organiser of World Fashion Week Asia 2017 has made it look like Malaysians seem to have lost it when it comes to hosting major events and hospitality.

Here's why.

Royal protocol ignored

1. The Sultanah of Terengganu Sultanah Nur Zahirah was invited to grace the event.
    a. There was no holding room for the Sultanah and VIPs accompanying her.
    b. The Sultanah was invited on stage without anyone accompanying her there (a big NO NO if anyone knows protocol involving royalty).
    c. The event dragged on till 11.30pm, way past the cut off point of the very many events I've attended with members of the royal family present.
   d. The Sultanah was forced to walk all t…

Klang run 'illegal', says Sports Commissioner

UPDATE (Dec 11; 11.58am): Sporting events approved by Sports Commissioner's Office will be posted on the Youth and Sports Ministry's website starting Dec 14, as revealed by the Sports Commissioner in her statement today. I'm glad the last point of my observation (as per posting right below) has been addressed.

---

UPDATE (10.57pm): A Twitter user had sent me a link by the organiser of the Klang Heritage Marathon 2017. It states that the marathon has been "postponed to Oct 14, 2018" and that they have been victims of fake news and will lodge reports with the authorities against materials with elements of defamation or fake news. Read the full statement, posted on Dec 2, here.

---
ORIGINAL POST

A Klang City International Marathon 2017 pacer suffered serious injuries after she and two others were hit by a car

Turns out that the organiser of this morning's event, Earth Runners International Group Sdn Bhd, DID NOT submit any application to the Sports Commissioner&#…