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Not the birthday Reezal Merican had in mind

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Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican turned 49 yesterday. But it surely wasn't the birthday he had in mind. In fact, his birthday will be remembered as the day the Yang di-Pertuan Agong gave the government a royal ticking off , followed by the defeat of Lee Zii Jia to Chen Long in the men's singles Round 16 match. Reezal Merican, who is in Tokyo cheering on the national contingent, must have been kept at the edge of his seat not only due to the exciting matches at the badminton stadium but also due to the rather tensed scenario between the ruling Perikatan Nasional (PN) and Istana Negara. His boss replied the Agong's statement by saying steps taken to revoke the Emergency ordinances were in accordance with the nation’s laws, and Federal Constitution .   Let's not forget, Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has renewed his call for Umno to ditch supporting Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin - this despite Reezal Merican and seve

Batu Kawan MP urges Rina Harun, Reezal Merican to defend Farah Ann following sexist comments

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An MP has urged two ministers to speak up against the sexist and disrespectful comments levelled against Olympian Farah Ann Abdul Hadi.  It's basically about her attire. Nothing new as Farah Ann has, unfortunately, been subjected to such shallow comments repeatedly in the past.  This is what I wrote on Twitter two days ago: To the perverts & bigots, Just leave @farahannhadi alone, will ya. Don't you get bored repeating the same thing over and over again? Do something meaningful with your lives. Yours truly, hd — Haresh Deol 🇲🇾 ‏ (@HareshDeol) July 25, 2021 An NGO has also lashed out against the criticism hurled towards the national gymnast. Read here for more. Below is the media statement by Batu Kawan MP Kasthuri Patto that was issued this morning. Farah Ann, the darling of Malaysia exhibited skill, stamina, strength and tenacity in her brilliant routine at the Tokyo Olympics a few days ago.  She proudly bore the specially designed ‘Harimau Malaya’ on her outfit as sh

From KL to Melaka to Tokyo - weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz wins the Philippines first ever Olympic gold medal

  History. Made. Hidilyn Diaz has won the first ever gold medal for Philippines! #PHI #Gold #PHI #Gold #PHI #Gold pic.twitter.com/hrhavf2Iyp — Olympics (@Olympics) July 26, 2021 This is something worth celebrating. Weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz inked her name in the history books as winning the Philippines first ever Olympic gold medal. The 30-year-old's historic achievement caught the attention of the Presidential Palace. It a statement, it said: "The Palace congratulates Hidilyn Diaz for bringing pride and glory to the Philippines for winning the country’s first-ever Olympic gold medal. "Congratulations, Hidilyn. The entire Filipino nation is proud of you." So what has it got to do with Malaysia? For those who still remember, Hidilyn was stuck in Jasin, Melaka for one and a half years, mainly due to Covid-19 lockdown restrictions. She came to Malaysia in February 2020 to train as her Chinese coach, Gao Kaiwen, thought it would be better for her as she focused on

'Professional or BAM players, they are all one Malaysian team'

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  The BA of Malaysia (BAM) had just issued a press statement quoting its president Tan Sri Norza Zakaria.  This paragraph caught my eye: “We didn’t differentiate between the players, whether they were professional or BAM players, they are all one Malaysian team. They worked hard and were committed despite the difficult conditions. I am extremely delighted with their spirit and commitment and confident they will deliver their best in Tokyo.” This deserves credit. Why? Injecting a sense of professionalism in sports was seen close to a decade ago via the likes of Datuk Seri Andrew Kam (KLRC Bhd) but it was met with much criticism then. Certain individuals became territorial. It was as though they were competing against players from another country. This reminds me of my article published in 2019 -  ‘Going independent means being truly independent’ (Twentytwo13) . I'm glad that the 'new BAM' is mindful that the best should represent the country - regardless if they hail from th

All the best to the Malaysian athletes - do it Demi Malaysia!

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  I've got a column in news website Getaran that appears twice a month. My latest piece, which was published yesterday. It was naturally about the Olympics. The Tokyo 2020 will officially open today. Thirty Malaysian athletes are in the land of the rising sun with a "target" set of three medals - one being the gold. In my column, I wrote that it's an extraordinary and bizarre Summer Games - and the gold medal could, perhaps could, appear when you least expect the most. While the attention towards the Olympics seems lukewarm at the moment, a podium finish by a Malaysian athlete will certainly put a smile on the faces of Malaysians - although for a mere second or two. I also said this during my interview on BFM yesterday evening .  Many are placing their bets (not literally as betting is illegal in the country, but then again if a police station officer can party in a police station , anything is possible) on cyclist Datuk Azizulhasni Awang, shuttler Lee Jii Zia or div

Malaysian football and hockey - popular underachievers

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It’s a sign of how far they have fallen that two of the country’s most popular team sports - football and hockey - will again be missing when the 2020 Tokyo Olympics get underway on July 23. That was the first paragraph taken from Bernama's article yesterday . And in typical fashion, there's a whole lot of harping about the past glory. What lessons have we learnt, how have these two sports move forward and how many legends have contributed back to the sport upon retiring? Now that's a conversation not many are willing to have. But both football and hockey are truly blessed. Mediocre results, plenty of excuses and self praise - and  the yet they can still get the eyeballs (and money). Amazing isn't it.  In fact, football and hockey are considered "more popular" than diving or even archery - two sports that have continuously ensured we are represented at the Olympics. Imagine your child returns from school with a straight As and is only given a pat on the back. 

Hope Shahril Hamdan won't be shunned due to his "attacks" during VSN2030 session

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Shahril Hamdan was spot on with his views during a National Sports Vision 2030 (VSN2030) online session themed Sports For All yesterday. The deputy Umno youth leader, who loves his Converse shoes as much as I do, went straight to the point by saying that clear communication was needed in presenting a sports vision for the next decade. His views were documented by news website Twentytwo13 .  I hope what Shahril said yesterday did not cause any individual to cringe or "cry".  This is because the manner in which the session was first presented - the background, the vision, Zzzzzzzz - was exactly what Shahril was trying to get at. In his words (not mine), forget about the "long, fat document". The same goes for the processes.  Accepting what he said is the first step to moving forward.  Such views are aired because people genuinely want things to improve. No point organising sessions, or even inviting journalists to press conferences, if you only want to hear what you w