Monday, March 29, 2010

Is it true? MHF is "recycling" its former foreign coach as the new Director of Development.

Bangsar is now a famous suburb of Kuala Lumpur and is supposed to be one of KL's gastronomically delightful places with the added attraction of the various "nite clubbing" places. One of the famous "drinking holes" in Bangsar which has survived the test of time for at least 30 years, not necessarily with the same owners, is now a meeting place of the hockey fraternity where the "breaking news" in hockey is hotly debated.

Unknown to many, i happened to be at this place when a few were engaged in a discussion on Malaysian hockey, and the topic focussed on Development. The 'breaking news" was that MHF has got over RM2.0 million from the Government for hockey development and MHF is recruiting a foreign coach who has been in and out of Malaysian hockey either as a consultant or national coach for about 15 years. The main thrust of the discussion relates to his proposed salary possibly in the region of RM10,000, which had shocked a few. In his heydays with the Malaysian team it was probably the same figure except in US$ with a number of perks thrown in.

Is it desperate times that he is unable to find employment elsewhere? It was rumoured that Pakistan had shown some interest especially as stories were told how he was seen handing over notes in a game to the Pakistan team management at the recent World Cup while wearing the jacket of Pakistan's opponents.

Those supporting his appointment believe that he loves this country and he has made it his 2nd home and realistically that is the sort of money that would give him sufficient comfort. This in a way negates the "shocker" of a low salary for a foreigner. The antagonists believe what he did to Malaysian hockey as national coach, ie permitted the slide, is setting a "footprint" for a low salary so as to sustain his long term future in the job as it would be difficult to get a foreign replacement at that price.

By which time i was getting bored with the discussion, as it revolved around money and not the core issue of the programmes on development. The argument continued whether RM2.0m was sufficient and whether the bulk of the money would be spent on administrative needs. The argument even drew comparison with the "Sukan Teras" development programme and how it came to an abrupt end leaving the various coaches in a lurch.

Suddenly, the discussion reverted back to the foreign coach again. Indeed there were arguments ranging from his personal likings to financial dealings to his dictatorial manner of coaching. Obviously these are things i would not want to document as they are "hearsay" matters. However it is fundamental that MHF clarifies these matters which any reasonable employer should do. What are these matters? I had heard them before and was not surprised to hear them again. It is in the interest of Malaysian hockey and for the person concerned.

If the rumour is true ie the stated foreign coach is to be appointed as Director of Development, all i can say is for "God to bless Malaysian hockey". In the 90s he was a renowned world class coach but his style and training methods is completely outdated in today's modern hockey. If our young boys are to follow his system, then we may be going back to the "dark ages". Maybe he has changed and if so lets get a panel of coaches to study his programmes and the expected targets with the anticipated results to see that we are investing on the right person.

Yes! we may get him cheap but may pay an expensive price in pushing the clock back for our young boys. It may be an irreparable damage and we may regret it but by then the damage may have already been done. MHF needs to be extremely careful and revisit the whole issue and scrutinize the programmes, target groups, action plan and the achievable results. They have to be professional about it.

As the beers were coming by the jugs, the discussion started losing its focus and there were other developments taking place at this "drinking hole" and i had to leave the scene. All in all it was a stimulating nite and if i only had a "crystal ball" to tell me the future, i can then tell you where Malaysian hockey is heading. At this moment, it is anybody's guess.


Anonymous said...

The problem with Malaysian Hockey is systemic and needed a total restructure from the grassroots up including introduction of a state based league for each of the state as well as continue with the very useful MSSM competition for schoolboys and girls. The school competition should feed into the state league system and also coaches are trained and graded into the various levels. Then and only then Malaysian hockey can hope to progress. The continued stacking of teams whereby a whole team can composed of national or former national players are unhealthy and at the end not very competitive for other teams and silly. What is the point of being able to thrash all the other minnows with a stacked team? At the end of the day if this structure is not put into place no matter who they employ to coach the national team will be useless as the coach can only provide the basic tactics and strategies. Even the good Dr. who is coaching Australia can do nothing to advance the course of Malaysian hockey.

Anonymous said...

At RM10,000.00/month,why not hire him? With that amount, its better go for him than others local coach we got currently. His not outdated. But, mhf/msn/coaches/hockey fanatics need to understand well his programme. During the so called 'dark ages' as per what u said, he is just at the beginning of the programme. Its not a conclusion yet! But so sad, our coaches blindly took that method as permanent without complete the learning! Somehow he did not yet finish his programme!
If you can see, he start his coaching programme with all the BASICS! The basics module for national player during that period and also development players at both Sports School. At the earlier stage of the tactical system, he starts with transfer of play, line/long ball, player rotation for space,T point and scoring method. Beside his technical guidance such as p.c attempts, trapping of the ball, running for space, marking, tackling, hitting, slapping, etc. Its good actually and he did improve our standard of play.
He didn't bring the 'winning glory' but still bring the 'good' in hockey for us. Just tell me here, which coach can bring the winning glory for us if our boys still cant even hit the ball perfect! He's not bring the dark ages, but its our MALAYSIAN HOCKEY THAT ALL THE TIME IN DARK AGES..
So sad we dont have local coach attached with him from the beginning until the end. I mean, really complete the module. I can summarize the attached coaches as below:
1. Yahya Atan / Stephen Van Huizen Tactically only learning transfer of play, Line Ball, Rotation for space,beside others technical guidance such as trapping, marking, p.c attempts, etc.
2. Wallace Tan
Tactically only adopt the previous local coach style of play as not stay for long period.
3. Tai Beng Hai and his accompany like Nor Saiful, Azlan, etc.
Tactically start from the beginning again and learning transfer of play, Line Ball, Rotation for space,beside others technical guidance such as trapping, marking, p.c attempts, etc. But with addition of scoring method such as T Point, etc.
4. Sarjit Singh and the accompany of his style like Dharma, Vive, etc.
Learning from the beginning again but more to conlusion of the programme and try to mix out with original style of Malaysian Hockey like dribbling skill, overhead/aerial, decrease the transfer of play, fastly pass the ball forward for attack, p.c sharpened,etc. got a few of Holland style mixture such as compress the opponents, etc.

So, different coach learn different topics. Its dangerous actually as if this coach never smart, he will coach the 'incomplete' guidance for development and current national setup.

And now, so sad all of our coaches quarrel each other as everybody told the world that he is the best local coach currently. Why not all this coaches combined and got their own task with their speciality learning module? We can seperate it to different division such as tactical (attacking,defending, scoring,etc.) and technical (trapping, hitting, drag flicking, overhead, slapping, etc.). All we need now is CO-OPERATION AMONG LOCAL COACHES!
It just my opinion here and plz no harm..We need to be smarter and smarter even though its hard for us to be the smartest with our own attitude and 'dark ages' tradition!

Anonymous said...

That is all you all are good for drinking oc tani n labeling people wheras the genuine people are always left out as they r not in the same thani drinking group.

Anonymous said...

While some move into "plumbing activities" and others "gastronomy"in the night one cannot help but review a very sensitive yet pertinent comment made by nor saiful in the other blog:

''Kita seharusnya mempunyai satu program khas dalam membangunkan pemain berumur 13 hingga 18 tahun khusus untuk diserapkan ke pasukan kebangsaan," ujarnya.

Saiful memberitahu, disiplin pemain negara jauh ketinggalan jika ingin dibandingkan dengan negara lain.

It is painfully true .....but can many accept his comments?

Hockey is a Team game. It can have one leader/ one captain.The rest follows and Supports .Everyone is physiologically,mentally and psychologically and behave differently.
The young are our best bet- one national agenda at heart. One direction and pathway to take.They learn and will listen and will progress upwards.When you have people with personal excuses and personal agenda to fullfil, the focus is lost and the ship will sink

Too many cooks will spoil the soup.

Whether MHF "recycles, reformats, insert, or delightedly "delete" or " backspace' it was evaluation in progress....

Anonymous said...

Ops..The drinking hole is dangerous place to be seen.

U may have only 1 beer but the world will say that u had 10 beers.

Bro good article. We should look forward, forget the past and get a new set of Mat Saleh to become the Chif. Start him off with the 2013 team. We may even be the JW champions.

Anonymous said...

i like to be talked 10 times more. which .... hole is that.