Malay coaches' reprieve

Reprieve for three coaches facing the sack

By Devinder Singh

THREE of four coaches the Malaysian Amateur Athletic Union (MAAU) wanted to sack were given a reprieve yesterday as state associations came under criticism for the Pahang Open fiasco involving national athletes.

The joint-committee meeting between the National Sports Council (NSC) and MAAU in Bukit Jalil also decided to promote 19 athletes from the Pelapis programme into the elite squad, which now comprise 45 athletes.

NSC director-general Datuk Zolkples Embong said coaches S. Muthiah, V. Subramaniam and Lou Cwee Peng – who MAAU wanted out along with former chief coach Hanapiah Nasir – will remain until the end of the year.

“We agreed that the three coaches will continue until the end of the year when their performances will be evaluated, besides quarterly evaluations. Hanapiah, however, has not been retained as there are no more athletes under him,” said Zolkples.

NSC has budgeted RM1.3 million for the elite athletes programme in view of the New Delhi Commonwealth Games and Guangzhou Asian Games later this year.

“All programmes and external competitions are being geared towards the Asian and Commonwealth Games. We would also like MAAU to have more local competitions for national athletes but they must not overlap with each other or international meets,” added Zolkples.