For the first time in the history of Malaysian hockey a tournament for umpires was successfully organised in Perak on April 30. The inaugural Malaysian Hockey Confederation Umpires Committee (MHCUC) Cup attracted some 120 umpires from all over the country.
Six teams took part. They were Selangor, Penang, Johor, Malacca, Perak and the Armed Forces. Only registered umpires with the Committee were eligible to participate.
The primary objective of the tournament was to foster friendship among hockey umpires in the country. The other reason was to give participants a feel of the game not as umpires but as players. This would make them appreciate hockey better.
The two-day tournament was held at the Sultan Azlan Shah Hockey Stadium, Ipoh. Malacca was crowned overall champion with Perak and Armed Forces the runners-up.
Nazmi Kamarudin, an international umpire from Malacca, was named player of the tournament while Perak’s Azmi Yahya, with five goals, the top scorer. Malacca’s Amirul Aiman got the best goalkeeper award. The Fair Play award went to Selangor.
“It’s organised with the cooperation of the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) and the Perak Hockey Association along with support from the participants themselves,” said Kanaisan Kanapathy, Organising Chairman and Perak Umpires Committee Chairman.
“Having everyone involved in the tournament, including members of the organising committee who are hockey umpires themselves, makes this tournament unique,” he added.
The organisers were pleased with the sponsorship they received from Amir Sports Company and the state government. Amir Sports Company donated prizes and trophies while the state government gave a RM5000 stipend.
Prizes and trophies were presented by Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal, President of MHC during dinner held at the Royal Ipoh Club on the evening of April 30. “I hope this will become an annual affair with the tacit support of MHC. It’s good for hockey in Malaysia,” said Subhan in his opening remarks.