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It's not our fault, says FAM

As published in Malay Mail today
By Vijhay Vick vijhayvick@mmail.com.my
PETALING JAYA — FA of Malaysia (FAM) general secretary Datuk Hamidin Amin conceded there was a miscommunication between the national body and the Malaysian Stadium Corporation (MSC), the guardians of the National Stadium in Bukit Jalil.
The Malaysia Cup final between Pahang and Johor Darul Takzim, the Lan Berambeh Anak Sarawak 2014 Carnival and a Buddhist prayers event all take place in and around the National Stadium tomorrow.
Mayhem is expected as more than 150,000 people are likely to converge  on the vicinity of the 100,000 capacity stadium. Further, carparks A and B are closed for the Sarawakian event while the prayers take place at the Putra Stadium.
“It was a miscommunication. For them (MSC) the stadium is in good condition and able to host the final. Only later, we realised about the other two events,” said Hamidin.
However, Hamidin insisted the National Stadium was the best venue to host the f…

Shake-up in Malaysian sports begins - only the qualified need to apply

As published in Malay Mail today.

By Vijhay Vick  vijhayvick@mmail.com.my
KUALA LUMPUR — The National Sports Council (NSC) is set to see two new faces within its top leadership while the Malaysia Stadium Corporation (MSC) will see a new chief, reaffirming the Youth and Sports Ministry’s mission to restructure Malaysian sports.
Dismayed with the national contingent’s pathetic outing at the Commonwealth and Asian Games this year despite the millions of ringgit spent, the ministry will advertise the position for a new NSC director-general, replacing Datuk Seri Zolkples Embong, and an elite programme director in selected newspapers on Monday. Ariffin Ghani is the acting elite programme director. 
The ministry is also on the lookout to replace MSC chief executive officer Ahmad Helmi Harun.  Insiders say Zolkples will head the 2017 SEA Games secretariat.
Minister Khairy Jamaluddin, had tweeted yesterday: “There will two major vacancies in Malaysian sports under @KBSMalaysia which…

Exodus of national football coaches?

As published in Mailsport today.
By Haresh Deol
haresh@mmail.com.my

PETALING JAYA — Trouble seems to be brewing in Wisma FAM as several national coaches may opt to quit following continued interference by FA of Malaysia (FAM) officials.

Insiders claimed the coaches were “fed-up” with the national stable as decisions were made without consultation.

They also claimed officials were quick to blame the coaches if they failed to achieve targets without taking into account the poor eco-system in the establishment.

“The coaches are being very polite but things are not looking good and if left unattended, they could just leave,” said a source.

“The national team management committee decided several matters recently and the coaches only found out about the changes from newspapers,” the source said.

Among the decisions made by the committee included the possibility of disbanding Harimau Muda A after the Singapore SEA Games (June 5-16, 2015).  Plans are afoot to include several Harimau Muda A pl…

FAM ‘praying’ for the best, fans disgruntled over online ticket system

As published in today's Malay Mail


By Vijhay Vick
vijhayvick@mmail.com.my

KUALA LUMPUR — “Don’t let me down.”

That was the message by FA of Malaysia (FAM) president Tengku Abdullah Shah to the men in blue after chairing the Malaysia Cup security committee meeting at the National Stadium in Bukit Jalil yesterday.

His anxiety comes as no surprise as the National Sports Complex is set to host three events — the final between Pahang and Johor Darul Takzim, the Lan Berambeh Anak Sarawak 2014 Carnival at car park A and B outside the main stadium and a Buddhist prayers event at the nearby Putra Stadium.
Some 150,000 people are expected to flock the complex. Football fans have been advised to head to the stadium by 2pm —more than six hours before the kickoff at 8.45pm.

But fans will only be allowed to enter the stadium after 4pm.

“We need the cooperation from the fans. Otherwise, the police will not be able to handle the volume of people,” said FAM security committee deputy chairman Datuk Osman S…

FAM refuses to budge over Bukit Jalil venue for Malaysia Cup final

As published in Malay Mail today.

By Vijhay Vick vijhayvick@mmail.com.my
KUALA LUMPUR — The FA of Malaysia (FAM) had insisted on the Malaysia Cup final to be held at the National Stadium in Bukit Jalil on Saturday, revealed Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin. Khairy said there was not much the Malaysian Stadium Corporation (MSC), which comes under the purview of his ministry, could do as they had already committed to two other events — a Sarawakian carnival and a religious prayer — scheduled on the same day. Johor Darul Takzim will play Pahang in the final which was earlier scheduled for Nov 8 but brought forward to this Saturday to give the national team time to prepare for the Asean Football  Federation Cup which starts on Nov 22. “It was unfortunate FAM changed the date of the final. MSC had already committed to the other two events and both the event organisers have paid in full for the use of the facilities,” said Khairy. “FAM insisted on playing the final a…

From bad motorists to 'controlling' Malaysian sports - when presumption meets reality

Haresh Says as published in Malay Mail today


He was in his shorts and a pair of slippers. A sling bag hung lowly across his body. Strapped loosely on his head was an MS88 helmet, a favourite among those riding his type of motorcycle.

He zoomed past traffic with confidence despite missing by inches the side mirrors of several vehicles.

He could be a decently-paid designer working in a publication company or an engineering student at a university. But in the eyes of many, the rider is presumed to be a Mat Rempit.

Then there was this middle-aged man. His German-made sedan had a Bar Council emblem plastered next to his number plate. He found it convenient to push other motorists off the road, believing the fast lane of the North-South Expressway belonged to him.

He continuously flashed his lights from a distance as his actions screamed “get the hell out of my way”. He then cut from the fast lane to the left-most lane before heading back to where he came from, all within seconds.

Many would bel…

Husam fails in bid to sue Utusan, ordered to pay costs

Pas vice-president Datuk Husam Musa has not only failed in his bid to sue Utusan Melayu (M) Berhad and two others, has also been ordered to pay RM45,000 in costs.

High Court Judge Datuk Su Geok Yiam made the decision on his defamation suit involving the publication of a report titled 'Husam Resign? Nik Aziz gave a five-day break to calm down', published on Nov 22, 2009, in Mingguan Malaysia, the Sunday edition of Utusan Malaysia.

On Feb 22, 2010, Husam filed the suit naming the company involved, reporter Azran Fitri Rahim and the editor-in-chief of Mingguan Malaysia as the first, second and third defendants.

In his statement of claim, Husam said that all the defendants wrote, edited and published the report with a malicious intent and with the aim of mocking and humiliating him.

He had sought RM10 million in damages.

However, in their statement of defence, the defendants claimed that the words and content of the report did not defame the plaintiff.

The information contained in…

Fans to suffer in messy Malaysia Cup final

As published in Mailsport today.
By Vijhay Vick vijhayvick@mmail.com.my
PETALING JAYA — Benjamin Franklin once said: “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” And the FA of Malaysia (FAM) is certainly preparing to fail by holding the biggest football game in the country at a venue where two other major events are taking place. The Malaysia Cup final, a Sarawakian festival and a religious prayer event all take place in and around the National Stadium in Bukit Jalil on Saturday. Why did the Malaysia Stadium Corporation (MSC) give the nod to all three events on the same day and are the authorities capable of handling such a turnout? Why didn’t FAM consult MSC before deciding to bring forward the date of the Malaysia Cup final from Nov 8? If FAM had planned its calendar properly, there may not have been a clash with the other events.  FAM did not even consider the Shah Alam Stadium — last year’s final venue — as an alternative at yesterday’s Malaysia Cup organising commi…

Happy Diwali

Another Malaysian athlete tests positive for banned substance

UPDATE Oct 21 (11.35am): NST quoted a BAM official saying a top national shuttler is involved in the fiasco. Read more here.

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KUALA LUMPUR: After Malaysia’s wushu exponent Tai Cheau Xuen, another Malaysian athlete has failed a drug test, the second doping case within a month. 

The athlete was one of those randomly picked up for an anti-doping test. Malaysian officials are now waiting for the results on the B sample before making any announcement. 

The athlete also took part in the Asian Games but was not among the gold medallists in Incheon, South Korea, so Malaysia’s ranking in the Games will not be affected. 

Read more here.

Those in the industry know who is involved. But could it be more than meets the eye? Jeng, jeng, jeng...

To be fair, let's wait for the results of the B sample before making any judgements.

Till then, majulah sukan untuk negara.




Will replacing the top man in NSC change the fortunes of Malaysian sports?

The Star ran this poll on its website. The print screen of the results was taken on Oct 21, 2014 (12.08am).




Match racing: What's in a name?

This article was written by Malay Mail sports editor Graig Nunis which was published on Wednesday. MATCH RACING seldom makes the news — except when the Monsoon Cup comes around at the end of the year.  That’s why the Liga Layar Malaysia (LLM) is a welcome boost for the sport and sailors as it offers competitive match racing all year-round with races in five  venues — Langkawi (February), Lumut (April), Pulau Indah (June and September), Putrajaya (August) and Port Dickson (October).  More races sharpen the sailors’ skills, give them some much needed publicity and a good return of investment to their sponsors in this extremely expensive sport. The sailors have responded with some good results. Several of those who competed in the Asian Games were on the crew of the teams in the LLM – although Malaysia’s No. 1 match racer Jeremy Koo (Sime Darby Foundation-Koo Racing Team) narrowly failed to win a medal in that event. That aside, Jeremy, the only Malaysian to compete in the A…

Highways no more than cosmetic effect

Haresh Says, as published in Malay Mail today.

IF the buildings could talk, they would have plenty to tell. Constructed in the early 1900s when Ampang was thriving with the mining scene, the old buildings along Jalan Besar Ampang in Pekan Lama Ampang still stand strong even till today. The township, located in the east of Kuala Lumpur, has seen rapid development. Jalan Ampang was one of the very few main arteries into the city centre, connecting the very many tin mines to the heart of town. But in recent years, it has been notoriously famous for massive congestion as many used alternative roads including the Ampang-KL Elevated Highway (AKLEH) or even the Middle Ring Road 2 (MRR2). What used to be rubber estates and thick jungle were slowly cleared to make way for housing development. Jalan Ampang and parts of Ampang Hilir was later called the “Embassy Row” as foreign nations bought plots of land to establish their diplomatic offices in what has and still remains as the “ex…

Chief secretary says OK to hunt new NSC man

The sports ministry has the green light to advertise for a new National Sports Council (NSC) supremo as Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Dr Ali Hamsa confirmed the position is open to anyone as long as it benefits the country.

"The sports minister (Khairy Jamaluddin) has spoken to me regarding advertising for the post of NSC supremo," Ali confirmed.

"We are open to the suggestion. What's important is for the objectives to be met. Whoever is appointed must meet the key performance index set by the ministry. This is for the sake of Malaysian sports."

Read more in Malay Mail.

Remembering past, knowing the present

Haresh Says, as published in Malay Mail today.


Selfie Pulla, a song from Vijay’s latest movie Kaththi, blared loudly.

A foreigner, clearly with the tune stuck in his head, shook his head as his female companion was mesmerised with the colourful bangles displayed at a nearby stall.

The smell of fresh apam completes the adventure of senses while walking along Jalan Tun Sambanthan in Brickfields on Monday.

Locals took advantage of the Aidiladha break to prepare for Deepavali. As for the tourists, it was a natural destination.

But Kuala Lumpur’s ‘Little India’ is more than just Indian food, DVDs of latest Tamil movies or fashionable Punjabi suits.

It is ‘big’ in history — which sadly many fail to appreciate.

Once referred by the locals as Batu Limabelas (15th mile), its humble beginnings was thanks to Chinese Kapitan Yap Ah Loy. Born Yap Tet Loy, the China migrant of Hakka descent, who was also known as Yap Moa Lan, played an instrumental role in developing Kuala Lumpur and gave it a new look —…

Tengku Abdullah wants Subahan as hockey chief

As published in Mailsport today.




By Vijhay Vick
vijhayvick@mmail.com.my




PETALING JAYA — Selangor HA (SHA) president Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal (pic) is the front runner to be the next Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) president.

Former MHC general manager Maninderjit Singh is tipped to make a return as chief executive officer.

According to sources within the national body, out-going MHC president Tengku Abdullah Shah has earmarked the Subahan as his replacement.

Subahan’s first task would be to improved MHC’s financial standing as the association is believed to be RM2 million in debt.

“Subahan will be the next president. Tengku Abdullah has already spoken to Subahan, who has agreed to come on aboard,” said a senior MHC official.

“They even went to the Asian Games together and Tengku Abdullah was introducing him as the next president.”

In August, Tengku Abdullah revealed he would not seek re-election as he was going for the Asian Hockey Federation’s top post. He then won that seat uncontested…

We must find recipe for success

Malay Mail sports editor Graig Nunis has plenty of fun 'baking' his column, as published in Mailsport today.

GOING NUTS
Graig Nunis

CUPCAKES — almost everyone loves them.

They are delicious, easy to make and even easier to find. From a single recipe, you can make a variety of flavours and if you’re adventurous enough, add some toppings to take it to a whole new level.

Unlike cooking where you can throw a bunch of ingredients together and still make a tasty dish, baking is a precise science — one wrong step and a cake would more likely than not, be ruined.

You also need patience — too high a heat can burn the cake, too low and it will be undercooked — although if you’re making lava cakes, the gooey centre is just what you’re looking for, so technically you are doing it just right.

As such, unlike cooking, in baking everything has to be done perfectly. This is also true about sports.
Everyone demands success but how many put in the effort to ensure we get there?

Have they done the necess…

Advertisement to search for new NSC head?

I’m your man, says Mazlan

As published in Mailsport today

By Graig Nunis gnunis@mmail.com.my
PETALING JAYA — Former National Sports Council (NSC) director general Datuk Wira Mazlan Ahmad, is ready to help rebuild Malaysian sports. Mazlan, the architect behind the successful Jaya ’98 and Gemilang 2001 programmes, is among those proposed to join a task force to rejuvenate Malaysia’s fortunes following back-to-back failures at the Commonwealth and Asian Games. Malaysia only won six gold medals at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games in August, half of what they achieved at the New Delhi Commonwealth Games in 2010. The national contingent ended their Asian Games outing yesterday with five gold medals, three short of their target.  For the record, Malaysia won nine golds at the last Asiad in Guangzhou, China, four years ago.   “I will definitely help if my services are needed. I still have much passion for sports and feel sad we have failed so badly this year,” said Mazlan, who is also a member of the Sports …

Major revamps in government sports agencies

As published in Malay Mail today. Above is the front page of today's paper. PUTRAJAYA -- There will be a major revamp within the National Sports Council (NSC) to address the ailing national sports scene, said Khairy Jamaluddin. The Youth and Sports minister confirmed the industry was in dire need to new leaders as those in position had been "riding on luck" in recent years. Experts from the Australian Institute of Sports (AIS) will be roped in to audit the situation and agencies within the ministry would see new faces as early as in January. NSC is the funding arm of the ministry and is also responsible for the elite training programme of national athletes.  "We need a new approach and ideally new people too," said Khairy, after launching the Rembau Challenge at the ministry yesterday. "For the national sports association it is left to them to decide. But change will come for the bodies under my watch such as the National Sports Council (NSC) an…

We (officials) are too syiok sendiri, says top Malaysian sports official

We have failed

As published in Mailsport today.

By Vijhay Vick    
vijhayvick@mmail.com.my

PUTRAJAYA — Malaysian sport needs a massive change and this could lead to a revamp of the National Sports Council (NSC).

Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin conceded the Commonwealth Games and the on-going Asian Games were a failure and could result in Malaysia’s worst performances in 20 years.

“We need to change. What that constitutes is to be decided. Any decisions made will be based on detailed reports,” said Khairy.

“The Commonwealth Games post-mortem was done and another will be conducted after the Asian Games. We have also got the Australian Institute of Sports to audit our four-year programme. The full report should be ready by January.”

It is learnt Khairy is already looking for individuals to fill key positions in NSC as the agency is tasked to look after elite athletes and their training programmes.

A special unit could be set-up to oversee programmes for the 2016 Olympics and 2018 Asian and C…

Weed out rogue cabbies, support the rest

Haresh Says, as published in Malay Mail today.





I WAS about seven when I was “forced” to take a taxi for the first time.

My late dad’s vehicle had broken down, and I was already late for an event at KL Plaza (now known as Fahrenheit 88).

The quickest way to get to Bukit Bintang from my flat in Pekeliling was by hopping into a cab.
“Son, just remember three things … do not board a waiting taxi, make sure they charge by the meter and take note of the vehicle registration number,” my dad said.

That was in the late 80s, when taxis were mostly black and yellow Opel Gemini, a horse race track in the heart of the city and Rediffusion was the go-to source for latest news.

Yet some things remain the same. Taxi drivers continue to park at the side of the roads, hoping for a passenger to come knocking. Some still refuse to use the meter.

There is a need to check the vehicle’s registration number as the passport-sized photo glued on the information card in the taxi sometimes does not match the driver.

It…