National team forwards Faizal Saari and Mohamed Syamin Yusof were given stern warnings for their misconducts and also left out of the senior team programme for six months.

This is the recommendation made by the five-man Disciplinary Committee comprised of chairman SAC Datuk Mohd Adnan Abdullah, Datuk Arthur Edmonds, Datuk G. Vijiyanathan, Awtar Singh Grewal and former international R. Shankar at its December 12 meeting which was endorsed by the Executive Board (EB) of the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC).

MHC had called up 35 players for national team training under newly-appointed coach Stephen van Huizen in October. However, both Faizal and Syamin had not only failed to show up but neither informed the team management of their reasons for staying away.

The Executive Board which met on Saturday also came up with a new ‘Code of Conduct’ after MHC president Dato’ Seri Subahan Kamal voiced concern over the lack of discipline in the national team.

“Under the new code of conduct, players who skip national training without valid reasons will be suspended for six months. This is a warning to all the players in the national set-up, from the juniors to the seniors at all levels,” said Dato’ Subahan.

In the case of Faizal and Syamin, Dato’ Subahan added that it is the prerogative of MHC Technical Director, Terry Walsh, and National team head coach Stephen van Huizen, to even consider both players for future assignments. However, the players must be willingly remorseful of their past action and show great interest in playing for the national team without having to steer into trouble again after the six-month period.

On MHC’s financial status, Dato’ Subahan disclosed that they have managed to reduce their debts to below RM500,000 as of today.

“When we took over in May this year, our debts were over RM2.8 million. Our target was to settle the debts at the end of the year but we are unable to do that. We hope to settle the remaining RM500,000 as soon as possible early next year,” said the MHC President who has been working round-the-clock to take Malaysian hockey out of its giddy spells and into new heights.

The EB also endorsed several recommendations made by the Coaching Committee headed by Dato’ Ow Soon Kooi, and Competitions Committee led by George Koshy.

Former international Stephen Van Huizen will be the head coach of the men’s senior team and assisted by Lim Chiow Chuan while Mohamed Nasihin Nubli is the overall head coach of the goalkeeping department and will be assisted by Mohd Madzli Ikmar from Negeri Sembilan.

Former national team men’s coach, K. Dharmaraj, is now the head coach of the senior women’s team in his new portfolio. These are among the movements in coaching departments at all levels from men’s senior to junior teams and women’s senior and juniors as well.

Dato’ Subahan also said that the national team’s programme for 2016-2018 was approved at the EB meeting after Walsh and Van Huizen presented the programme which was discussed at length.

“At heart will be Malaysia’s participation in the 2018 Asian Games and we have targeted a top three finish although emerging champions is very much high on our list of priorities which will enable Malaysia to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics,” said Dato’ Subahan.

Apart from the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup assignment for the seniors which will be held from April 7-16 next year, Dato’ Subahan revealed that Malaysia will also bid for the Asian Champions Trophy next year.

“We hope to stage the tournament in Kuantan in November if the Asian Hockey Federation approves our bid,” said Dato’ Subahan. “If Malaysia is successful in the bid, it will be the national team’s second big tournament of the year after the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup.”

The Competitions Committee, said Koshy, have also recommended several structural changes to the TNBMHL, 54th Tun Abdul Razak Cup and the TNB National Junior League which starts on January 15 while adding that the women, both senior and junior level, will see fruitful year with competitions. Details of which will be announced later.

Meanwhile, Malaysia will be the first foreign team to play in the Australian Hockey League which will be held in September and played over 12 days as part of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed earlier this year between Hockey Australia and MHC.

MHC chief executive officer K. Logan Raj said they would be sending three teams – two for the men’s competition and one for the women’s event.

“Our national senior team have also been invited to play in two four-nation tournaments in Perth in November. There will also be a reciprocal visit by the Australian national team to Malaysia.

“As we do not have any major tournaments next year, the MoU with Hockey Australia will ensure we have quality training and matches,” said Logan.

National Senior Men’s Squad:
Head Coach: Stephen Van Huizen
Assistant Coach: Lim Chiow Chuan
Goalkeeper Coach (Head): Nasihin Nubli
Attachment: Mohd Madzli Ikmar

National Senior Women’s Squad:
Head Coach: Muhammad Dhaarma Raj Abdullah
Assistant Coach: Lailin Abu Hassan; Kannagi Arumugam.
Goalkeeper Coach: Roslan Jamaluddin

National Development Squad (Men):
Head Coach: Wallace Tan
Assistant Coach: A. Arulselvaraj
Attachment: Muhd Amin Rahim

National Development Squad (Women):
Head Coach: K. Gobinathan
Assistant Coach: Leo Vincey
Attachment: Nor Saliza bt Ahmad Soobni

2020 Programme (Men):
Programme Manager: Nor Saiful Zaini
Attachment: Muhd Suffian (1MAS Temerloh Coach)

2020 Programme (Women):
Programme Manager: Lailin Abu Hassan
Attachment: Catherine Lambok (1MAS Sarawak Coach)

1MAS Programme (Men):
Head Coach: S. Vellapan (Maybank Head Coach)
Assistant Coaches: Nor Harmezi Omar (1MAS hockey coach); Shahzan Amir (1MAS hockey coach)

1MAS Programme (Women):
Head Coach: Yahya Atan
Assistant Coach: Nuriza Sulaiman (1MAS hockey coach)

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