I was at a "water hole" over the weekend and I had the opportunity to listen to some discussions pertaining to Malaysian cricket. Obviously most of it was related to Malaysian Cricket Association's (MCA) President and how he does not have the time for MCA because of all his other commitments. The other interesting aspect of the discussion was relating to the Deputy President and the Secretary. I must tell you that there were not many kind things mentioned. If what I heard is facts then all I can say is good luck to Malaysian cricket
The discussion that caught my attention relates to a local national coach who had been involved with the national team since the Commonwealth Games in 1998. Apparently, he is from Kajang and has a close relationship with most of the players. Many cannot understand how over the years he has been bullied by being pushed around with pathetic allowances. Indeed what I noted was what he had been receiving a daily attendance allowance which principally pays for his transport, toll charges and maybe a light refreshment. From what I gathered from the conversation is that his love for the game and his close relationship with the players makes him overlook some of shortcomings in MCA.
This is the sort of treatment MCA shoves down on him and yet when there are overseas coaches they are paid highly, including a car. Yet i understand this local coach is the one who has to run around getting things organised. The conversation seem to indicate that he is the first one to be at training and the last one to leave. Indeed this current national coach who originates from Calcutta is here on a short stint and wants punctuality and yet he is usually late to the ground.
The "water hole" gossip made me to do some further digging and what comes out of all these is "connections". The foreign coach from Calcutta came as a recommendation from a known foreign doctor who is involved with the Asian Cricket Council (ACC). A regular visitor to Malaysia and is close to 2 Malaysian doctors who are also connected to Malaysian cricket. One of them is the Deputy President of MCA and the foreign doctor is usually a guest at the Deputy President's house when he is in town. There is nothing wrong with such connection or relationship so long as there is fairness in decision making.
What makes the story interesting is that with the H1N1 becoming a concern in the nation, the local coach had to find a way to balance his official work, coaching and family life. The difficulty was trying to get leave or time off as he was involved in the public health sector. Notwithstanding all these he made a lot of arrangements and adjustments to be present at training by doing the late night to morning shifts. This was the sort of sacrifice he was undertaking and yet he was always not accorded the right treatment by MCA. Apparently he takes a submissive nature with people in authority and seem to be bullied, thereby losing his basic rights. Apparently he is not one of those who goes around fighting for his rights.
People too have their limits. This time the Deputy President, Secretary and Executive Secretary joint procrastination on the question of when the local coach should take his leave to be with the national team for the tournament in Singapore commencing in 3rd week of August, saw the emotional eruption of a magnitude that these office bearers would not have 2nd guessed. The local coach after nearly 11 years of being pushed around by MCA resigned from his position in writing. The outburst was best seen in his letter where he recommended sarcastically to MCA to get as many foreign coaches for the national team. Indeed MCA sources indicate that the Executive Secretary wanted that paragraph to be removed from the letter.
According to sources these 3 office bearers do not have a "tuppence" of respect for this local coach. Whatever he requests or wants is taken lightly or delayed as much as possible with the silliest of excuses. This poor coach probably had to pent up his frustration for years and then decided to release it like an earthquake of a certain magnitude in the Richter scale.
It is sad these things take place specially among learnt people. If what has been told reflects the true situation then i must say that the President has to act fast. This sort of nonsense has to stop or not dedicated people would not want to play a part in cricket. Why be tortured by office bearers when one wants to help. Sometimes people believe they have power vested in them and therefore in a selfish way may want others to beg for their rights. If sports has to flourish such things must stop and the President of MCA has a greater responsibility for he also sits as President of the Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM). He cannot close his eyes on such matters.