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Showing posts from May, 2016

Sungai Batu is a big deal

As published in Malay Mail today




HARESH SAYS
By Haresh Deol

THE Sungai Batu Archaeological Complex has slowly but surely uncovered the intriguing mystery of Southeast Asia’s oldest civilisation.

The centuries-old secret of Sungai Batu — once referred to as Kataha in Sanskrit — is simply mind blowing as archaeologists are unearthing more items including remnants of ancients barges and items which described what life was in this region in the first and early second centuries.

A decade ago, an archaeological team from Universiti Sains Malaysia discovered other relics including iron-smelting facilities, monuments, jetties and administrative buildings in the area which is within Kedah’s Bujang Valley.

Some historians argue the relics found are not as old as they are believed to be. Others insist Sungai Batu deserves to be called a Unesco heritage site for there are enough evidence to prove it is the oldest civilisation in the region – dating earlier than the famous Angkor Wat in Cambodia (…

Thank you, once again, for the recognition

2012 - 2011 Sportswriters Association of Malaysia (SAM) Journalist of the Year and Best Special Report award.
2013 - 2012 SAM Best Report award.
2014 - 2013 Malaysian Press Institute Best News Report award.
2015 - 2014 SAM Best Commentary award.

April 13, 2016 - 2015 SAM-Siebel Award (Journalist of the Year) and Best News Report award.

Yesterday -  Malaysian Press Institute Best Columnist Award (joint winner with NSTP Group Managing Editor Datuk Abdul Jalil Abdul Hamid).


Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I am, once again, truly humbled.

Striker Safee Sali ‘struck’ 
by gun in truck

As published in Malay Mail today


By Haresh Deol
haresh@mmail.com.my
KUALA LUMPUR — Striker Safee Sali has been gunned down by a gun and live bullets find in his pickup truck. He told Johor Baru police he had sent his vehicle to a workshop to fix some accessories. A man driving his green Ford Ranger has been arrested. Fresh from winning the FA Cup final, the Johor Darul Ta’zim footballer and his teammates were on their way to Johor Baru yesterday when he received a phone call that police had found a gun in his pickup truck. Police had stopped the vehicle, driven by a 4x4 accessories workshop owner, at a roadblock near the Kempas exit at the North-South Expressway at noon yesterday. They found a Smith & Wesson pistol and 30 live bullets in a yellow bag on the back seat of the vehicle.  “I was in the bus with my teammates in a joyous mood after beating PKNS 2-1 in the final,” Safee said.  “As we left Segamat after meeting the Kembara Mahkota convoy, I received a phone call and was inf…

Lifting of ban 'step in wrong direction' to some but former FAM gen-sec says let's 'rationalise' move

As published in Mailsport today

'Step in wrong direction'
By Haresh Deol haresh@mmail.com.my
KUALA LUMPUR — FA of Malaysia’s (FAM) decision to lift the ban of former footballers caught match-fixing in the 1990s has sparked a heated debate among observers and officials. While some stressed the players should be given a second chance, others said the group destroyed M-League and killed Malaysian football.
“Has it ever recovered? The ramifications are still being felt today not just in Malaysia but regionally and many ways internationally,” said International Centre for Sport Security Sport Integrity Director Chris Eaton.
“What happened in Malaysia 22 years ago set a negative tone in regional football and exposed the methods of criminals. But actions, or more accurately inaction, that contained official responses merely to players, allowed a criminal match-fixing and betting fraud trend from Malaysia to improve its methods and to connect and expand globally.   “From that da…

Ban lifted for 84 footballers caught for match-fixing. Bad precedent?

The Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) have lifted the ban on the 84 players caught for match fixing 22 years ago. FAM deputy-president Datuk Seri Affandy Hamzah said the players are now free to participate in all football-related activities at state and national levels.
“Of the six players who are serving life bans, we will appeal to the AFC (Asian Football Confederation) and FIFA (world football’s governing body) to lift their sentences,” said Affandy after chairing the FAM executive committee meeting at the Wisma FAM in Kelana Jaya on Monday. Read the full report here. The lifting of ban is good news for the 84 former players once caught for match-fixing and are eager to return.
But are we setting a wrong precedent by allowing them back into the scene? It would be interesting to know how have these 84 players assisted the authorities in nabbing bookies. We have not heard of any "big fish" arrested since the crackdown on players and officials more than two decades ago. Remem…

UK swimmer Josef Craig disqualified from event over Olympic rings tattoo

South Tyneside swimmer Josef Craig was today sensationally disqualified from a European championship race - in a row over his tattoo, reported The Shields Gazette.The teenager, from Jarrow, was due to compete in the final of the IPC European Championships S8 100m freestyle, tonight, after making it through the first heat.

However, the 19-year-old, who has cerebral palsy, was disqualified from the event after failing to cover up a part of his tattoo, on the left side of his chest, featuring the Olympic rings. 

Josef, was catapulted into the sporting spotlight at the age of 15 after smashing two world records on his way to the top of the podium in the 2012 Paralympic Games in London.

Read more here.

India's Staff Selection Commission cannot bar tattooed person from selection in service, rules tribunal

A person cannot be declared unfit for selection as a subinspector in Delhi Police or the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) just because he has tattoo marks on his body, the Central Administrative Tribunal has said, reported Hindustan Times.

Rules on tattoo marks on the body in the recruitment process of the Staff Selection Commission (SSC) have been a grey area due to a lack of clarity on the terms and conditions contained in the recruitment notice.
There is no bar in recruiting candidates in the CAPFs, Delhi police and the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) with permanent tattoo as per the SSC recruitment rules.

However, a 2012 home ministry notification allowed candidates with a “small engraving/tattoo of name or religious symbol on the inner face of the arms or hands” for enrolment, but said, “Candidates having permanent tattoo on any other part of the body be debarred for recruitment in CAPFs…”

This ambiguity on recruitment rules was the subject matter of a …

I will miss Marco’s smile, says Mat Zan

As published in Mailsport today


By Haresh Deol haresh@mmail.com.my
KUALA LUMPUR — Melaka United players and coaches were already bracing for the worst. 
Yet when they were informed of Marco Stefan Petrovski’s passing, the Premier League outfit were in a state of shock and disbelief.
The 18-year-old Australian-born goalkeeper died yesterday after he was hospitalised following a freak accident on April 5 where he and defender Muhd Afiq Azuan were struck by lightning while training at Padang Sepuluh in Krubong, Malacca. Afiq survived the incident.
One man hit the most was coach Mat Zan Mat Aris.
“He was so young … only 18. Although he joined us earlier this season, we could see his potential,” he said.
“When he joined us, he was a scrawny goalkeeper. He took it upon himself to bulk up and to prove he was good enough to be fielded. 
“Sadly, he never got the opportunity to be part of the first 11.”
Mat Zan said Petrovski, of Serbian-Malaysian parentage, was part of the senior team…