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Agong congratulates Damok over victory in Spain

Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah today congratulated young Malaysian racer Syarifuddin Azman for emerging victorious at the FIM CEV Moto3 Race in Barcelona, Spain yesterday.

In a statement uploaded on Istana Negara’s Facebook page today, His Majesty expressed his happiness and pride over the success, which was also described as not only a historical feat for Malaysian motosport but one which garnered accolades for the country on the international stage.

Al-Sultan Abdullah described Syarifuddin’s achievement as very meaningful for Malaysia and an inspiration for the rider better known as Damok in his hunt for more success in the future.

“Syarifuddin’s outstanding achievement once again proves that Malaysia is capable of producing athletes and individuals of quality, calibre and of international standards.

“It also proves that with commitment, fighting spirit and hard work, Malaysians are able to compete and succeed at the international level,” the statement read.

Al-Sultan Abdullah hoped Syarifuddin’s success and fighting spirit will be a source of inspiration to fellow Malaysians, in particular athletes, to work hard and strive for success in their respective fields domestically or on the international stage.

“TheYang di-Pertuan Agong wished Syarifuddin all the best and prayed that he would be blessed with continued success and to keep on putting the country on the world stage with more victories,” the statement said.

The Selangor-born rider emerged victorious after crossing the chequered flag in 29 minutes and 32.553 seconds in the 74.5-kilometre race, beating Spaniards David Munoz Rodriguez and Jose Antonio Rueda Ruiz to second and third places respectively.

The 25 points from the win helped Syarifuddin climb up to sixth place in the world championship standings with 30 points after three races.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

RTM Sports Channel platform to unite people – Saifuddin

— The newly launched RTM Sports Channel serves as a platform to unite the people, said Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah.

He said the launch of this channel is in line with Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s statement that sports can be an avenue for uniting the people, regardless of race and religion.

“This (sense of unity) is obvious when people even wear the national team’s jersey and wave the Malaysian flag at home in front of the television when supporting the Malaysian team.

“People come together without the need for any speeches. The spirit of unity and patriotism (through) sports channels is very important,” he told reporters after the launch of RTM’s 75th anniversary and RTM Orchestra’s 60th anniversary celebrations here today.

At the ceremony, Saifuddin also launched the 24-hour RTM Sports channel, which kicked off today.

Meanwhile, when asked on the issue of pirated local works which were accessible via the Telegram application and Android box, he said the ministry was looking into amending several acts.

The Acts include the Malaysia National Film Development Corporation Act 1981 (FINAS Act) or Act 244, and the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998.

“We are not trying to restrict freedom but at the same time, we should be able to protect genuine products especially local works.

“However, we have to look at current developments to see what can be allowed and what should be controlled … we have no intention to curb or restrict the freedom to produce works,” he said.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

Newly-elected FAM executive committee members reminded football comes first

— The newly-elected Football Association of Malaysia executive committee members have been reminded to give priority to the football agenda and not personal interests.

FAM president Datuk Hamidin Mohd Amin in his opening speech in conjunction with the first meeting of the committee on Saturday, told those elected not to disappoint the people and national football fans who want to see results from the parent body.

“For that, all of them will be monitored through the introduction of the FAM Executive Committee Member Report Card which I believe can be a benchmark and able to improve the performance and quality of each of them in performing their duties and portfolios.

“I hope that all those appointed as the chairmen and deputy chairmen of FAM’s standing committees as well as the managers of the national teams can provide a good service and give their full commitment for the good of Malaysian football,” he said in a statement issued by FAM today.

Hamidin, who chaired the meeting at Wisma FAM, Kelana Jaya, explained in detail to the executive committee line-up about his vision and mission for the 2021 to 2025 period.

He also announced the names of the chairperson and deputy chairperson of each standing committee, ad-hoc committee, independent bodies and the judiciary committee for the new 2021-2025 term, in addition to the names of the managers of the national teams.

Stuart Ramalingam and Datuk Ismail Karim remain as secretary-general as treasurer respectively while the National Team Manager post is still held by Datuk Mohd Yusoff Mahadi and assisted by Datuk Posa Majais and Datuk Kamarul Ariffin Mohd Shahar.

“Among the things I announced was the establishment of a Presidential Task Force to comprise individuals not from state football associations but still able to contribute to national football and assist the FAM president, such as chief executive officers of government-linked companies (GLCs), supporters, government and royal family members,” Hamidin said.

Following is the full list of chairmen, deputy chairmen of FAM’s standing committees for the 2021-2025 term:

1. Emergency Committee

Chairman: Datuk Hamidin Mohd Amin

Deputy chairman: Datuk Mohd Yusoff Mahadi

2. Finance and Management Committee

Chairman: Datuk Hamidin Mohd Amin

3. National Team Management Committee

Chairman: Datuk Hamidin Mohd Amin

Deputy chairman: Datuk Mohd Yusoff Mahadi

4. Competitions Committee

Chairman: Mohd Firdaus Mohamed

Deputy chairman: ACP (Rtd) Md Dali Wahid

5. Judiciary Committee

Chairman: Saaran Nadarajah

Deputy chairman: Syed Yazid Syed Omar

6. Referees Committee

Chairman: Datuk Sivasundaram Sithamparam Pillai

Deputy chairman: Datuk Jefferey Low Han Chau

7. Internal Audit Committee

Chairman: Datuk Adly Shah Ahmad Tah

Deputy chairman: Dr Siti Faidul Maisarah Abdullah

8. Women’s Football Committee

Chairman: Datuk Suraya Yaacob

Deputy chairman: Dr Siti Faidul Maisarah Abdullah

9. Futsal and Beach Soccer Committee

Chairman: Datuk Seri Rosmadi Ismail

Deputy chairman: Datuk Mohd Hisamudin Yahaya

10. Sports Medicine Committee

Chairman: Datuk Jefferey Low Han Chau

Deputy chairman: Dr Siti Faidul Maisarah Abdullah

11. Status Committee

Chairman: Mohd Joehari Mohd Ayub

Deputy chairman: Saaran Nadarajah

12. Media and Public Relations Committee

Chairman: Christopher Raj Aralanthu

Deputy chairman: Datuk Adly Shah Ahmad Tah

13. Security Committee

Chairman: CP Datuk Seri Abdul Rahim Jaafar (Bukit Aman Internal Security and Public Order Department)

Deputy chairman: ACP (Rtd) Md Dali Wahid

14. Integrity Committee

Chairman: Tan Sri Dr Aseh Che Mat

15. Tickets and Stadiums Committee

Chairman: Datuk Posa Majais

Deputy chairman: Datuk Ismail Karim

16. Technical and Youth Football Development Committee

Chairman: Datuk Sivasundaram Sithamparam Pillai

Deputy chairman: Mohd Joehari Mohd Ayub

17. Sponsorship and Marketing Committee

Chairman: Datuk Seri Shahril Mokhtar

Deputy chairman: Datuk Mohd Hisamudin Yahaya

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

Centralised training snag for Harimau Malaya

The national football team has no choice except to continue with the challenges in the second round of the 2022 World Cup/ 2023 Asian Cup qualification without any optimum preparation should the event be held in March.

Team manager, Datuk Mohd Yusoff Mahadi admitted that the squad under head coach Tan Cheng Hoe may not gather for team training after the centralised training camp scheduled for this month was cancelled.

He said with the 2021 Malaysia-League competition starting at the end of February and the uncertainty over the implementation of Movement Control Order (MCO) presently, have compounded efforts to group players together.

“We have no choice as we could not hold it (centralised training camp) this month. If we want to call players in February, they would be busy with their respective club preparations for M-League which is commencing on February 26.

“Under such circumstances, how are we going to call them for a 10-day centralised camp, which team would released their players when they are busy with pre-season preparations,” Mohd Yusoff who is also the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) deputy president told Bernama today.

The centralised training camp for the national squad was scheduled from Jan 15 to 26 since November last year but had to be called off following the implementation of MCO in six states for 14 days until Jan 26.

At the same time, he said FAM was awaiting the official decision of International Federation of Association Football (FIFA) on the qualifying competition schedule, on whether to go ahead in March or postpone it to June at a selected location.

According to him, the national team can benefit from the international match calendar from March 22 to 30 for centralised training if FIFA decides to postpone the qualifying competition to June.

“In my view, they (FIFA) have to announce quickly so as not to burden all countries in deciding the direction this season. Nonetheless, whatever decision FIFA makes, we have to make new plans or adapt to the situation for the competition.

“So far, I could see that if the qualifying matches were to be held in March, it would be difficult to organise centralised training but if it is held in June, we still have a chance,” he added.

Malaysia are scheduled to meet the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in Dubai on March 25 before hosting Vietnam on March 30 in Group G second round 2022 World Cup / 2023 Asian Cup Qualifiers.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

Cheah, Kisona gain invaluable experience at Yonex Thailand Open

— Malaysian women’s singles shuttlers Soniia Cheah and S. Kisona may have lost to their opponents at the opening round of Yonex Thailand Open Badminton Tournament at the Impact Arena in Bangkok yesterday, but they both believe they have gained invaluable experience that will help them become better players.

According to Cheah, who is the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games mixed team silver medallist, her 15-21 and 12-21 defeat to the seventh seed, An Se Young of South Korea, served as the best lesson to improve her performance for the Toyota Thailand Open which is scheduled to commence from Jan 19 to 24 at the same venue.

“My opponent managed to control the rhythm of the match better than me, and it was kind of jitter since it was my first match (after not playing for some time due to COVID-19), but I do hope to get my rhythm back in the next tournament,” Cheah was quoted as saying in a post-match video interview by the Badminton World Federation (BWF).

The video was made available to Bernama.

Sharing the sentiment was Cheah’s compatriot, S. Kisona who was delighted to be given a chance to play in the tournament following the withdrawal of Thailand’s player Nitchaon Jindapol due to an injury.

The 2019 Philippines SEA Games gold medallist said that despite losing straight-set 15-21 and 15-21 to the world number 20th Saina Nehwal of India in the first round, she was happy with her performance at the US$1 million (RM4.042 million) tournament.

“I tried to play my best to see how far I can go since this is my first tournament after not playing for a while (due to COVID-19),” she said.

“I think Saina played well and she is one of my idols. It was a good experience to get a chance to play against her,” Kisona added.

The defeat by both players saw Malaysia had no representatives left in the BWF World Tour Super 1000 tournament.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

KBS confident sports activities will pick up early next year

The Youth and Sports Ministry (KBS) is confident that sports activities will be more vibrant next year despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

Its deputy minister Senator Wan Ahmad Fayhsal Wan Ahmad Kamal said the ministry would ensure that all Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) were adhered to if the government allowed some sporting events to be held.

“We (KBS) are looking at all possibilities before organising sports events. We have decided to introduce a sports bubble model and for some sports, no spectators will be allowed

“The people have been able to accept the new normal and we are confident that sports events will be lively again next year,” he told reporters after attending the Kelantan Youth and Sports Department Rakan Muda Volunteer Programme at SK Kedai Tanjong here today.

He said the sports bubble model to be introduced by KBS in early January will kick off with the organisation of a motorsports trial event at the Sepang International Circuit when the MotoGP teams from abroad will come to the country to try out the circuit.

He said through the sports bubble model, riders would not be allowed to leave the circuit area, while only a limited number of spectators would be allowed.

“The MotoGP trials is an experiment before it (sports bubble model) is implemented at other sports events as we want to see how the people adapt to the new norms through sports,” he said.

Asked about the organisation of the 2026 Kelantan Malaysia Games (Sukma), Wan Ahmad Fayhsal said the Federal government, through his ministry, will assist in the construction of several major venues such as stadiums and sports complexes.

“We will wait for the allocation that will be tabled in the 12th Malaysia Plan at the end of next January.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

Ibrahim Mohd Yusof appointed as new Sports Commissioner

The Ministry of Youth and Sports Malaysia (KBS) has announced the appointment of Ibrahim Mohd Yusof as the new Sports Commissioner for a two-year term effective today.

In the statement released today, KBS said Ibrahim’s latest post at the ministry was as division secretary (policy and strategic planning) and he had been directly involved in drafting the Sports Development (Amendment) Act 2018.

Ibrahim, who began his career in the civil service as an administrative and diplomatic officer in 1997, has also been involved in formulating sports policies including the KBS Strategic Plan and the KBS Strategic Paper for the 12th Malaysia Plan.

“KBS is confident and believes in the experience, knowledge and credibility possessed by Ibrahim will be able to strengthen the governance of the Sports Commissioner’s office, and take the development of national sports to greater heights.

“KBS also hopes that all sports associations give their due cooperation,” the statement said.

Ibrahim, who holds a Masters in Information Management and a Bachelor of Statistics degree from Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM), has extensive experience in management, especially in policy planning and sports development.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency