Monday, May 15, 2006

Just some updates on what has happened recently in the Malaysian squash. The 3rd leg of the Sportexcel was held from the 5th-7th of May. It was ok except for a few hiccups here and there. We had about 20 player who took part in it. How did we do? Result wise, ok but not so in performance. I was very disappointed with the way most of the senior players and the way they took their matches. They just don't have the habits of a winner or try to be one. No pre-match preparation whatsoever, just play and expect to win. And these are 16-17 year olds! Worse still, they influence the younger players, because monkey see, monkey do. This is one headache that need to be addressed immediately by my coaches and me as well. Generally, it is a problem in Malaysia, but I am pretty pissed with my players for having this problem as well.

The annual SRAP league has started last week. SAP put up 2 teams, the SUKMA boys team and the SAP team which consists mostly of the girls in the academy. The girls won their match with Sri York and suprisingly the boys lost to Penang Sports Club who has 2 of my coaches on their team. Full result will be at the bottom.

This week is the start of the hectic month for me. It starts with the SUKMA camp tomorrow and we leave for Alor Setar on Sunday. In between that, I have to do all the preparation for the Penang Junior Open. Then the Milo All Star is next and finally MSSM. So there may not be any time for me to update the blog. Till next time, cheers.

SRAP League Result

Tin Club beat USM 4-1
Pg Sports Club beat Sukma Boys 3-2
SAP beat Sri York 3-2

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Today it seems that my mind is on the month end where I will be away for about 3 weeks due to 4 tournaments in a row. My concerns are for my squash players as some of them will have to play in everyone of this. We start off with Sukma in Alor Setar from the 22nd of May followed by the Penang Junior Open on the 27th of May. Immediately after that we head off to Selangor for the Milo All Star on the 31st. Then my elite group of players will be heading to Singapore for the Asian Junior Individual Championships which is for the 1st time being held annually. This event will have the U-19 as well as an U-15 event. The rest of my players will be off to Ipoh to take part in the MSSM event.

To me, I felt that the MSSM and Asian Junior Championships could have been held at some other time. Sukma is compulsory every 2 years and that cannot be changed. Penang Junior Open and Milo All Star has been around for the last 4 years already, even before the MSSM and Asian Juniors. These 2 events attract junior players from all over Asia, Australia, Europe and even South Africa. So why couldn't the Asian Squash Federation and MSSM just reschedule or look at the calender and plan accordingly?

Everytime we have a coaches conference, we talk about burnout of our players and making sure we protect them. But that is the coaches and sports science experts talking. What is missing are the administrators who decide all the other factors like the calender and who and which tournaments to play. They do not attend these conferences or meetings. They do their own things and put our opinions in the dustbin. So there goes any hope of getting sports in the direction of world class. What is worse is that we are forced to send our best players for these tournaments and not allowed to skip it. This is due to the funding we get and representation of the country. And for my Academy, it is a big amount in the squash budget but peanuts compared to football. So any potential sponsors around?

Well, I can only guess that each organisation has their own reasons for doing what they have done. As for me and my team of coaches, we will just have to try and keep our players in tip-top condition for these tournaments. I do pray that hopefully this doesn't repeat itself in 2 years time. I dread going through it again.

Till the next time,