Friday, June 23, 1995

Leave coaches alone (The Malay Mail)

MALAYSIAN Coaches Association president Chow Kwai Lam is concerned with
the rise in the number of local coaches facing the prospect of being
relieved of their duties lately.
Kwai Lam was speaking about Sabah's Kelly Tham being suspended
indefinitely, Mahadi Yusof taking temporary leave in the wake of pressure
from fans, Malacca's Rahim Abdullah job at stake earlier and Negri
Sembilan's M. Karathu who was also earlier under pressure before
relinquishing his manager's post to concentrate on coaching.
"Coaches should be allowed to do their job without people constantly
pressuring them," said Kwai Lam.
"After all, they have a contract and if they fail they will have to go.
"But, to react after only a few matches and a spate of poor performance
is unfair to the coach.
"And, to make matters worse, coaches are suspended indefinitely or
relieved of their job temporarily.
"We do not see this happening elsewhere. Either the coach is sacked or
is left alone to do his job. There is no such thing as suspensions.
"If coaches are sacked, their contractual obligations must be fulfilled.
"But, it is absurd to leave things hanging in the air."
Kwai Lam said that winning and losing are part and parcel of the game.
"No coach wants to see his team lose. A coach will do everything
possible to ensure that his team does well. But, sometimes, it is not that
simple and time could be an essential factor.
"But, if the coach is suspended or relieved of his duties without being
given a chance, then it is not fair."
Kwai Lam, who coaches the Kuala Lumpur team, said he was grateful to the
KLFA management for being more understanding and giving him all the
"Our team was having a bad run. But the team management was supportive
and we worked together with the players to turn things around for us.
"It was also the same for Negri Sembilan who kept faith in Karathu.
"It is important that coaches are given all the opportunities to rectify
the situation before being taken to task.
"Taking irrational decision just because the team losses a few matches
is definitely not the answer."
Kwai Lam also said that team management should not give in to player
power or any other outside influence in the decision of retaining a coach.
"It is important that the players know who the boss of the team is and
are only answerable to one. The moment the players have one too many
avenues to turn too, they become dominant and that is dangerous."
Kwai Lam hoped any action taken against local coaches should be done
after much discussions in a rational manner and in the best interest of
the game and the profession of coaching.