Saturday, July 31, 2010

FAM Election Results

Deputy President
Tengku Abdullah Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah - 29
Tan Sri Annuar Musa - 23

Vice President
Dato Hamidin Mohd Amin - 27
Dato Abdullah Hishan- 19
Dato Subahan Kamal- 28
Dato Affendi Hamzah- 20

DR Haji Hamdan - 29
Dato Takiyuddin - 33 votes
Dato Jeffrey Low - 25
Dato Astaman - 32
Dato Osman Salleh - 24
Hj Rosmadi - 24
Mej Rani - 31
Sivasundram - 31.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Datuk Mokhtar in the lead?

The Tengku Mahkota of Pahang Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah is all set to take back his old position as the Deputy President of Football Association of Malaysia (FAM). That's the general feeling among the delegates who would be voting at the AGM this Saturday.

But many feel that Selangor's Datuk Abdul Mokhtar Ahmad, has a  better chance of winning the other Deputy President' post, even though media reports seem toi show that Kelantan FA boss, Tan Sri Annuar Musa has the most support.

Also, for the Vice President's post, another Selangor candidate, Datuk Hamidin Mohd Amin is in the lead, mainly because of his influence among the affiliates. This could also mean that candidates backed or aligned to Hamidin will win plenty of votes.

However, there seem to be a strong move from the northern states to get their candidates in. Like in all elections where politicians are involved, anything can happen.

The sad part of this election is no candidate is pledging to bring changes that is so badly needed. Some just went as far as saying they will do things differently. Doing the same things differently would not save football, especially now with neighbors Singapore, Thailand and Indonesia showing efforts to improve their structure, tournaments and developments and of course the national teams.

If Malaysia is just going to things "differently", then we are going to be in deep trouble.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Will anything change?

Can the Tengku Mahkota Tengku Abdullah Ahmad Shah make a comeback? That seems to be what everyone is talking about as the Football Association of Malaysia's AGM draws near. Well, we will all know the answer on 31st July when the delegates vote to choose two Deputy Presidents from a list of six candidates.

One of them, Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim announced that he is witdrawing from the race, but his name is still on the list. Why the interest for the two number two posts? Well, maybe many feel that the President, Sultan Ahmad Shah, who won unopposed, may give up his post halfway through his term, and one of his Deputies will take over. 

But, the main concern should be about electing the right people to correct the many wrongs that have accumulated over the years in the running of football in the country.  From the list released by FAM recently, there don't seem to be any reason to celebrate but this could change if the new exco realises that the only way forward is to make drastic steps, like getting the right people to run the tournaments, the development projects and so on.

Former national coach, Claude Le Roy told me during the 1995 SEA Games in Chiang Mai, one of the reasons why he wanted to quit was that the FAM leadership at that time made decisions based on media reports and not expert opinions. Present when the French coach said thet were the team manager, Datuk Dell Akhbar Khan and FAM's Assistant Secretary, Datuk Yap Nyim Keong.

At that time Tengku Mahkota was the Deputy President. I hope things hace changed. I really do. 

The FAM List
President : Sultan Ahmad Shah (Unopposed)

Deputy President: (Two positions):
1.Tengku Mahkota Tengku Abdullah Ahmad Shah
2.Datuk Seri Redzuan Tan Sri Sheikh Ahmad
3.Datuk Hj Che Mat Jusoh
4.Tan Sri Datuk Seri Panglima Anuwar Musa
5.Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim
6.Datuk Abdul Mokhtar Ahmad

Vice President (Four positions):

1.Datuk Afandi Hamzah
2.Datuk Seri Raja Ahmad Zainuddin Raja Omar
3.Datuk S.Subramaniam
4.Datuk Hamidin Mohd Amin
5.Datuk Seri Zahrain Mohamed Hashim

6.Datuk Seri Abdullah Hishan Mohd Hashim
7.Datuk Subahan Kamal
8.Datuk Lawrence Gimbang

Executive Committee (Eight vacancies):

1.Tan Sri Mohamad Noor Abdul Rahim
2.Datuk Seri Abdul Aziz Abdul Rahman
3.Datuk Hamdan Mohamed Khalib
4.Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan
5.Datuk Jefery Low Han Chau
6.Datuk Astaman Abdul Aziz
7.Datuk Ibrahim Shamsuddin
8.Datuk Osman Salleh
9.Datuk Soh Chin Ann
10.Rosmadi Ismail
11.Mej Rani Abdul Rahim
12.Wan Mohd Nizam Wan Omar

Friday, July 16, 2010

Azzuddin menjelaskan


Selaku Setiausaha Agung Persatuan Bola Sepak Malaysia (FAM), saya terpanggil untuk mengeluarkan kenyataan balas bagi memberi gambaran sebenar berhubung isu peletakan jawatan Mohd Azraai Khor Abdullah dan Azman Eusoff yang memberi gambaran seolah-olah saya berbohong.

Saya ingin menegaskan saya tidak pernah berbohong dalam isu ini dan mahu menjelaskan keadaan secara kronologi agar difahami pihak media. Walaupun saya sedar laporan yang memetik Azraai dan Azman berunsur peribadi, saya tidak berniat memanjangkan isu ini, sebaliknya mahu menjelaskan keadaan sebenar.

Pada masa yang sama, ingin saya tekankan bahawa saya tidak berniat menjatuhkan maruah atau martabat sesiapa serta tidak mahu dilihat membuka pekung di dada.

Sebaliknya selaku wakil FAM, saya menghulurkan penghargaan atas sumbangan Azraai dan Azman.

Dengan ini saya meminta jasa baik pihak media untuk menerbitkan kenyataan ini.

Latar belakang pelantikan Azraai Khor Abdullah sebagai jurulatih Harimau Muda A.

1.Azraai dilantik selaku ketua jurulatih Harimau Muda A pada 1 November, 2009 dan diberi mandat memilih panel jurulatihnya. Amalan biasa bagi FAM memberi jurulatih kebebasan memilih penolong mereka dan Azraai melantik Azman Eusoff sebagai penolong dan P. Mohana Sundram selaku jurulatih penjaga gol.

2.Pasukan Harimau Muda A berlepas ke Slovakia pada 17 Februari dan pulang ke tanah air pada 31 Mei, 2010.

3. Malangnya, timbul beberapa isu ketika pasukan menyertai sesi latihan dan perlawanan di Slovakia.

Isu semasa.

Jawatankuasa Teknikal bersidang pada 30 Jun dengan menemu bual Azraai, Azman, Mohana dan beberapa pemain selepas FAM menerima laporan mengenai perselisihan faham Azraai dan Mohana. Ahli jawatankuasa akhirnya memutuskan ketiga-tiganya dilepaskan daripada jawatan masing-masing.

Hasil siasatan Jawatankuasa Teknikal FAM turut mendapati ada beberapa kelemahan teknikal di pihak Kumpulan Kejurulatihan ini.

Selain perselisihan pendapat di antara Azraai dan Mohana, Jawatankuasa Teknikal FAM turut merumuskan beberapa tindak-tanduk Azraai sekembalinya ke tanah air tanpa merujuk kepada pengurusan skuad Harimau Muda A dan sekretariat FAM terlebih dahulu sebagai satu kesilapan.

Adalah menjadi tugas dan tanggungjawab saya sebagai Setiausaha Agung, untuk memaklumkan kepada mereka keputusan itu.

Dalam pertemuan secara peribadi, saya memaklumkan kepada mereka secara berseorangan bahawa khidmat mereka tidak diperlukan lagi.

Disebabkan kontrak mereka menyebut dengan jelas mereka mengurus Harimau Muda A, ini bermakna mereka tidak mempunyai sebarang pasukan untuk dikendalikan. Sejurus itu, saya menasihati mereka agar menimbang menyerahkan surat peletakan jawatan dengan syarat-syarat mereka.

Azraai menyerahkan surat bertajuk permohonan meletak jawatan pada tarikh 6 Julai, diikuti Azman dengan tajuk Arahan Penamatan Tugas pada 9 Julai. Dalam surat Azraai, tertera dengan jelas mohon menamatkan kontrak, manakala Azman bersedia menimbang untuk meletak jawatan, yang pada asasnya boleh ditafsirkan sebagai niat meletak jawatan tertakluk kepada syarat dan rundingan yang dipersetujui FAM.

Perkara ini belum diputuskan dan ini dijelaskan dalam sidang akhbar tempoh hari iaitu pada 13 Julai, yang ia harus dibentangkan kepada KDYMM Sultan Ahmad Shah selaku Tuanku Presiden FAM.

Adalah menjadi harapan saya perkara ini tidak diperbesar-besarkan serta diselitkan tuduhan-tuduhan yang bersifat peribadi dan tidak menguntungkan sesiapa. Saya juga ingin menegaskan kami di FAM tidak mahu mendedahkan isu ini secara terperinci kerana mahu menjaga nama dan maruah semua pihak.

Sekian. Terima kasih.

World Cup without a world class team?

Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Ahmad Shabery Cheek feels Malaysia and Indonesia should bid to jointly host the 2026 FIFA World Cup. A few years back the Tengku Makhota of Pahang, who was Deputy President of FAM, suggested that some ASEAN countries should consider a joint bid to host the World Cup.

Earlier this year Indonesia wanted to bid for the 2018 World Cup, but gave up half way through when its government could not give the necessary backings. The fever is has become a flu with everyone sneezing World Cup.

Having such ambitions is good, no problems with that. But, it must come with a commitment to change, and
Datuk Ahmad Shabery can start by, at his level and through his agencies, assist FAM to run the sport professionally, with professional set up at grassroots and a national leaque that is of high standard.

Infrastructures can be built, laws ammended, security and stuffs like that be made ready. But, how about a team to play with the best in the World? At this point, all this is a just a dream. 

Friday, July 9, 2010

Did you know this, Paul

You don't have to be Paul The Octopus to predict this but Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) rejected a proposal to amend Article 14.4 of the Constitution.

The proposal, in line with desires of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and submitted by the National Archery Association, was to introduce a clause to prevent office-bearers aged 70 or above, or who had already served for 20 years, from being nominated as a candidate to stand for office.

But, the General Assembly rejected it. So now, office bearers can stay on, but staffs must leave by age 70, at least that was the reason given to discontinue the services of two veteran officials, Mr. M.P. Haridas and Mr. N.A. Baskaran. Two sets of rules, no problem.

There are greater octopuses than Paul in Malaysian sports. The World Cup is almost over and now is time to start writting again. Fo those of you who were busy with Paul, Vuvuzelas and other stuffs, welcome back to reality.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Aktiviti sukan di IPT

Sepanjang bulan Julai dan Ogos ini pelbagai aktiviti penganjuran sukan berlangsung
di peringkat Institusi Pengajian Tinggi (IPT) mahupun yang dianjurkan oleh pihak Bahagian Sukan KPT.

Antara event utama yang berlangsung ialah :
1. Kejohanan Ping Pong Piala Timbalan Menteri KPT
2. Kejohanan Futsal Piala Menteri Pengajian Tinggi mengikut Zone
3. Pusingan Akhir Liga Bola Sepak IPT Piala Menteri Pengajian Tinggi
4. Kejohanan Kriket Jemputan Universiti Antarabangsa UKM
5. Kejohanan Ragbi 10 sebelah Piala Naib Canselor Universiti Pertahanan Nasional Malaysia

Nur Ekmal Bin Buhary
Bahagian Sukan Kem. Pengajian Tinggi Malaysia

Monday, July 5, 2010

Who will be FIFA Ballon d'Or?

World football's two most prestigious player of the year awards will merge into a single title called the FIFA Ballon d'Or from next year.

Europe's existing Ballon d'Or and FIFA's World Player of the Year award will cease to exist as individual entities and the new award will be given for the first time in January.

"From January of next year we will have one single trophy for the best player in the world," FIFA president Sepp Blatter said Monday.

The deal was announced by France Football magazine publisher Marie-Odile Amaury and Blatter, though no financial details of the initial four-year partnership were revealed.

"We are very proud to be announcing this together with you," Amaury told the FIFA president at a ceremony on the sidelines of the World Cup.

Blatter said the agreement "can only be positive" for relations between FIFA and France, which have been troubled since the national team's humiliating first-round exit at the World Cup.

France Football created its European Footballer of the Year award - the Ballon d'Or, or Golden Ball - in 1956 from a poll of European journalists. The award was later opened to players of any nationality playing in Europe, then to those from any club worldwide.

FIFA's first presented its award in 1991. It is voted for by national team coaches and captains. France Football's award has set the agenda by being presented first, traditionally in early December, in Paris.

FIFA's honor has been announced later in December or January at a gala ceremony held in recent years at the Opera House in the governing body's home city, Zurich.

For the past five years, the same player has doubled up to win both awards: Ronaldinho, Fabio Cannavaro, Kaka, Cristiano Ronaldo and current holder Lionel Messi.

The new award will be voted for by journalists, coaches and captains from FIFA's 208 national members.

Blatter said FIFA's world player of the year award for women would continue under a new name yet to be determined.

FIFA and France Football also will create new awards for the world's best coach and best technical director, and continue selecting a world's best starting lineup of 11 players. That honor was created in conjunction with FIFPro, the international umbrella group of players' unions. The awards will be presented at a gala ceremony scheduled Jan. 10 in FIFA's home city of Zurich.

"It will be really a bouquet of flowers and ladies will be included (in having an award category)," Blatter said.

Responding to reporters' questions, the FIFA president said relations with the French Football Federation were good - "despite a few disturbances reported by the media."

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Now its hand of Suarez

Strange scenes in the final minutes of Uruguay's quarterfinal victory over Ghana on penalty kicks Friday night. Uruguay's star striker Luis Suarez proving to be a bizarro-world hero of sorts as he ended up saving his team from last minute defeat at the death of extra time with a blatant and deliberate handball right on the goal line. It got him sent off and preceded a missed penalty kick from Ghana's PK master Asamoah Gyan and Uraguay's eventual shootout victory.

After the game,Suarez announced that Maradona's Hand of God goal in the 1986 World Cup no longer holds the divine title:"It was worth it to be sent off in this way. It was complicated and tough. We suffered to the end but the hand of God, it's mine now."

With the score even at 1-1 and the shootout looking inevitable, the lovable, last African team standing forced one last assault on the exhausted Uruguayans in the final minutes of extra time. What came next was a surreal, yet nerve-shredding game of pinball as Ghana tried to pound the ball into the goal from point-blank range. The Uruguayans somehow just kept fighting Ghana off. Finally, just as it seemed Ghana had produced one too many shots for Uruguay to stop, Suarez put up his hands and slapped the ball away as natural as if he were a volleyball player.

The red card came out for the clear offense and Suarez walked off sobbing as Gyan prepared to seal what seemed to be a sure win for Ghana with one last penalty kick. He was an automatic from the spot to that point — even scoring Ghana's only two goals in the group stage from there. But this time, he missed off the crossbar. Uruguay's subs ran to alert Suarez of their sudden turn in fortune and a deflated Ghana team was forced into a shootout with the suddenly reborn Uruguay. From there, the South Americans won the shootout 4-2, even finishing it off with a cheeky chip from the master of the art, Loco Abreu.

With Uruguay's advancement through such a weird turn of events confirmed, the debate over whether Suarez was a genius savior or a Thierry Henry-level cheat rages. It's obvious Suarez used his hands with purpose, but unlike Henry, he was immediately caught and punished and will now miss the semifinal against Holland.

However, Ghana is now out of the tournament because of Suarez's decision to break the rules. Though Ghana did have a golden chance to make Suarez's efforts irrelevant with that Gyan penalty. Is there a correct moral view of this situation? Or is it just an unbelievable turn of events within a game that should be appreciated for its complexities? Luis Suarez doesn't care. His team plays on.

Friday, July 2, 2010

BAM will review bonus scheme

The Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) will review the bonus and allowance scheme for national shuttlers to encourage them to improve their performance.

BAM president Datuk Nadzmi Salleh said the association would study the matter in detail including getting feedback from the coaches.

"We plan to implement (a new bonus scheme) next year. Among other things, we may raise the bonus for major championships like the Thomas Cup, World Cup and the Olympics.

"We will also look at extending the scheme to the junior players, but this is still in the discussion process," he said after the BAM committee meeting, Friday.

In addition, Nadzmi said the BAM would engage the services of an audit firm to undertake an audit on the association's management and administration process. "This is one of our efforts to raise the level of professionalism of the BAM," he said.

He said the BAM meeting also decided to suspend doubles player Mohd Fairuzizuan Mohd Tazari for one month from June 15 to July 14.

He said the decision was taken after taking into consideration the pressure faced by Mohd Fairuzizuan because the championship was a major one that attracted the attention of the whole Malaysian population.

Mohd Fairuzizuan had reacted to the spectators' jeering by showing a vulgar sign following the defeat of Mohd Fairuzizuan and his doubles partner Mohd Zakry Abdul Latif against the Japanese doubles pair in the Thomas Cup in May.

Are you nerrrvoushh?

CAPE TOWN, South Africa – God’s gift to soccer writers had heard the rumblings from the German camp and couldn’t resist adding spice to Saturday’s Argentina-Germany quarterfinal match.

Diego Maradona is Argentina’s irascible coach and former mega-star player. He had gotten word that German player Bastian Schweinsteiger (picture) was complaining about Argentina’s tactics with the referees, the behavior of their fans and, of course, the dirty acts that went down during a brawl following Germany’s 2006 World Cup penalty kick victory.
So Maradona stared into a Fox Sports camera on Thursday and with a mock German accent asked: “What’s the matter Schweinsteiger? Are you nerrrvoushhh?”

Bless Maradona and bless a quarterfinals match that is heating up by the moment.

All had seemed behind the Argentina-Germany feud when the nations played an uneventful “friendly” this spring. That was then. This is the World Cup. Now it’s bad blood, worse accents and great theater.

It’s all led to circumstances surrounding the team’s 2006 postgame fight being rehashed in both team’s training camps Thursday. The Germans say it began when the Argentineans were mocking them during their penalty kicks and then when they celebrated the victory. Argentina recalled no such thing and claim the Germans deserved it.

Whoever is right doesn’t matter. What resulted was a fairly wild brawl between the teams. As far as sporting donnybrooks go, it ranked below your average minor league hockey bench clearer but way ahead of any baseball fight. There were punching, kicking and hurt feelings all around.

Considering the stage – World Cup quarters – it was a big deal. And now it’s back.

This has gotten so fun that even Pele, the long-retired Brazilian star, has taken a side – and, not surprisingly, it’s against his rival Maradona, who just this month said Pele “should return to the museum.”

“[Maradona] is not a good coach, because he had a bizarre lifestyle which cannot go down well with his team,” Pele told the German magazine 11Freunde.

Well, sure, if you want to get technical, a coke habit, alcoholism, a stomach stable, rampant narcissism, tax evasion charges (a mere 37 million euros), intense superstition, defiance in the face of authority and a mouth that never held back an insult could, in some circles, be considered “bizarre.” We in the media prefer “colorful.” And besides, the Argentinean players say they love their coach.

Anyway, what does Pele think of the German side? “This young German team is a pleasure to watch,” he said.

For his part, Schweinsteiger isn’t about to forget, let alone forgive the 2006 brawl. No matter what Maradona said, he didn’t sound nervous when he blasted the Argentineans for everything except the price of empanadas.

There was the way Argentina works over the refs: “When one sees Argentina’s games and the way in which they try to influence the referees. … It is a lack of respect, but this is what the Argentines are like.”
There was the conduct of Argentina fans: “We have already seen how the Argentine fans sit together in spite of the fact that those are not their proper seats, and they stop other spectators with the correct tickets from enjoying the game.”

He could’ve added that Argentina’s coach talks so much he makes Ozzie Guillen seem like a mime, but why encourage Diego? Germany can win the game and it can win another postgame fight (it can lose either or both also).
Schweinsteiger won’t win a war of words with Maradona, especially when Diego still has a press conference scheduled Friday where he is literally liable to say anything. We’re just hoping for more German imitations.

Know this: Both Argentina and Germany believe they can win this World Cup. Both sides have played extremely well. They are experienced, fast, creative and confident. The fact they are matching up so early in the tournament is a circumstance of the brackets. You can imagine either would prefer taking on Ghana or Uruguay right now.

They aren’t, though, which offers a replay of a thrilling game four years ago. Germany tied it at 1-1 with a genius, ping-pong heading combination in the 80th minute and then won it 4-2 on PKs. The fight only made it more memorable, the talking point of arguably the most argued about quarterfinal game in this tournament. Maradona promised his “boys” would play “in their faces.”

Cape Town is a laid back place – sand, surf and spectacular views. It’s a long way from the pressure-cooker of crowded, crime-fearing Johannesburg. That’s going to change Saturday – and for the better.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Taufik's dream

Champion shuttler Taufik Hidayat meets President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono in this file photo.  Taufik is to open his own badminton arena.  (JG Photo)
Champion shuttler Taufik Hidayat meets President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono in this file photo. Taufik is to open his own badminton arena.

Having enjoyed a stellar career a lot of shuttlers could only dream about, Taufik Hidayat can now fulfill his dream of giving back to the badminton community through the construction of his own arena.

The country’s No.1 men’s singles player led the groundbreaking ceremony for the Taufik Hidayat Arena in Ciracas, East Jakarta on Wednesday, and in his speech Taufik couldn’t help but look back at the days when he first started playing the game.

“I was 8 years old when I started with badminton,” Taufik said. “I’ve been through victories and defeats all my life. During the process, I kept telling myself that someday I would have my own badminton stadium. That’s been my dream ever since, and now it’s starting to become a reality.”

The arena, which will sit on a 6,600-square-meter plot, is scheduled to open next year and will primarily serve as a training camp for aspiring shuttlers. Details of the building costs are not available, but Taufik reportedly purchased the land for Rp 6 billion ($660,000).

Taufik said the complex, just a five-minute drive from the Indonesian Badminton Association (PBSI) training camp in Cipayung, was his way of helping the game flourish in a country that has continuously produced world-class shuttlers.

“I have no intention to compete with PBSI. Actually, I want to help the association produce top-level talents through my project,” said the 28-year-old former Olympic and world champion.

“As we all know, Indonesian badminton is going through a rough time. I grew up with badminton and have earned a living out of it. I think it is time for me to dedicate myself to improving the sport in our country.”

Taufik said he would work with his club SGS Elektrik in West Java to select players suitable to train at the center.

“I’m so proud of his good will. He shows that he cares about developing the country’s favorite sport,” said SGS Elektrik head coach Iie Sumirat, the man credited with discovering Taufik.

Rita Subowo, president of the Indonesia National Sports Committee (KONI) said Taufik’s project would be key in finding promising new players.

“In the Youth Olympic Games in Singapore this August, for example, we can send only two shuttlers. We don’t want this situation to continue for long,” Rita said.

“I think what Taufik has done is outstanding. It will serve as an example to other senior athletes.”

Designed by M Ridwan Kamil of Urbane Indonesia Architect, the Taufik Hidayat Arena will feature eight badminton courts, a spectator section, a dormitory, a gym, a clinic, a cafeteria and a gallery of Taufik memorabilia.

“Since I like to play futsal, there will also be two futsal courts that can be rented by the public. I think it’ll good to have one here as a part of the arena,” Taufik said.

KL Youth Soccer League on the move

Thirty-two aspiring footballers aged between 12 and 18 will have a chance to travel and play in two international tournaments in the United States and Sweden next month.

An Under-18 team from the Kuala Lumpur Youth Soccer League (KLYS) will compete in the ESPN-Disney Cup in Orlando from July 12 to 17 while two other team, Under-15 and Under-13, will play in the Gothia Cup in Gothenburg, Sweden from July 18 to 24.

KLYS director, Elcee Asuncion Villa said that both tournaments are not about glory but to teach the boys about the real trade of football.

"I really hope the 32 boys will be competitive enough and will build a good relationship with other players from different countries. It's not all about winning the game," she told Bernama, in Kuala Lumpur, Wednesday.

The KLYS, which trains players from about 18 schools in the capital, are sending teams for the Gothia Cup for the sixth time while making its debut in the Disney Cup.

She said 1,600 teams from 70 countries are expected to take part in Sweden while the Disney Cup meet has attracted teams from more than 20 countries.