Wednesday, October 21, 2009

There is no "whomp" in the national hockey team.

I had the pleasure of witnessing a few people exchanging views on the current Malaysian hockey team. This was in pursuant to the 1st and 2nd "Test" match between Australia and Malaysia on Monday and Tuesday at the Tun Razak Stadium. Most of them had strong views and in a nutshell it seem to revolve around the following points:
  • Australia brought a young team and 9 of their senior players are absent and are still playing in Europe.
  • The Malaysian team seem to be "headless" and "speechless" as no one seem to be directing the operations in the field.
  • The Malaysian players basic skills of trapping the ball, goal shooting, creating passing opportunities, supporting the player with the ball, and so forth seem weak.
  • Malaysian players do not seem to have the passion nor the hunger to perform.
  • Although there were glimpses of individual dribbling and taking on the opposing player but the finishing was poor.
  • Save for 1 or 2 players most of the Malaysian players could not "match" the "body contact" approach the Australians had adopted.
  • The Malaysian players lack the imaginative sense to create opportunities to score including through "set pieces".

The Malaysian coaches Beng Hai and Saiful must take these points aboard. After all it is "test" matches and it is important the team's weakness are spotted and worked upon before the qualifiers. Although there is not much time yet the key aspects can be addressed. I am sure Beng Hai must be doing all that is possible to get the best out of the team.

An area that seem disturbing is that there is something missing in the national team. There seem to be no "whomp" factor i e a sense of "cohesive urgency" in the Malaysian game play. I wonder whether the prolonged politicking in the national team over the months have taken the toll that the players are just carrying the "stick" in the field to earn the "caps" and the monthly salary.

I raise this as there are some stories going around about the national team and its management. Firstly, the 1st choice national goalkeeper wanted an extended Deepavali leave to celebrate his 1st year of Deepavali as a married person ( a cultural aspect ), thereby missing the "Test" matches. The 2nd choice goalkeeper overslept before a match and therefore he is yet to be utilised.

Secondly, there is the aspect of announcing the list of players. The names were released last week and yet the team manager remained silent about it. There are strong indications that the relationship is estrange between the team manager and the coaches. This can be of concern as a significant number of national players are in the team manager's club payroll. Finally, early this week the coach had to make it known to the media. It would seem strange why the team manager went on "silent" mode.

Thirdly and interestingly, a former foreign coach with the national team has become privy to what is happening in the national team as some of the current players who were under him are talking. Apparently he is well versed with the situation and that may not be helpful.

All these combined and with the previous discipline issues it seem to have created an aura that nothing is going to go right. Whether this aspect is a figment of ones imagination could also be a question? However the way matters have progressed it seem to indicate otherwise.

If all these are factual events then i can understand why the national team is under performing and the "whomp" factor is missing. Too much of distraction for the players and at the sametime they are being pulled in different directions, thereby making them lose their sense of focus. It is imperative that the individual disgruntling must give way to national interest i e the big picture of the country needing to qualify for the 2010 New Delhi World Cup. The differences have to be shed and everyone must work together as a unit, if we are to make that fundamental difference. The right motivation with the right attitude combined with the right spirit, anything is possible. Lets get the battle jointly going so as we can win the war jointly to qualify for the World Cup.


Anonymous said...

The Way Forward for Malaysia is the Young ones. There is No "whomp' as they are new into the International arena. They must be given ample time to cordinate with their young team mates.

We must move forward with these young ones and not solely rely on the seniors. Malaysia must never judge them on this test series alone. We must never be discouraged by the scores/results we have at hand. MALAYSIA WAS THRASHED by the Australians severely when we sent the seniors to Australia recently. So what is this compared to those results.

Never belittle the juniors, they will shine eventually.

Anonymous said...

People can easily comment on Malaysia's young team. We must take evrything with a pinch of salt- Our young boys have an advantage as compared to their opponents and capitalising on their plus points will help overcome some issues.

Whether we take a mostly senior or mostly junior team what are our bets in Invercargill? Many can easily guess......So what does malaysia want to prove or what does she want to achieve or who are we hood winking?

Exposure of the juniors is A MUST to the International arena if we want to develop and train them to face bravely.

The coach knows what he is doing but people expect miracles to happen and that too-- IN THE WINK OF AN EYE. we need to remain positive and persist in encouragement for the young team. They may shine as equal to or even outclass some of the seniors given the right approach.

Foreign coaches may advise us otherwise as they know we have certain plus points in our young team. So Malysia must have a different stand in some aspect-agree to disagree in some important issues

Anonymous said...

I watched the 2 friendly games and what a surprise, the quality and standard of our National Senior Team dropped like hell. All the players also looked damn lousy, lazy, no spirit, no focus and their motivation towards success looked very very very low! There's must be something wrong with the squad (especially the coach?). But of course the players just keep on silence to protect themselves.

Anonymous said...

MHF. Please change the coach. Even Germany or Holland or even Australia National Team also collapse if they hire this coach. Either our junior or senior players in the team, it doesn't make count if the coach so 'bing-aaii'!

Anonymous said...


They drama on field, they drama off field, they even drama in real life- maybe drama with God too!!!!!

Kaching!!!!! Lotsa money and things!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

5.35pm,Give the Coach a chance. He is still considered the best in terms of discipline and dignity. Not like the bussinness type of coach who sold the team and players by betting and gambiling.

102 fan