Saturday, January 14, 2006

Hire only foreigners with good records (13/01/2006 - The Malay Mail)

Publication : MM
Date : 13/01/2006
Headline : Hire only foreigners with good records

SUCCESS always draws envy, jealousy and urges to be part of the
More often than not, the athlete who achieves success becomes the
victim and this may affect his or her performances.
With this in mind, it is indeed sad Nicol David's fitness trainer for
eight months before she attained world No 1 status in January - Allstair
McCaw (right) - is no longer in the picture.
Of course, there were many people who played a role in Nicol's success.
They include her parents, but coach Liz Irving and McCaw, certainly
played a huge role although Nicol herself should be given the bulk of the
McCaw, a South African, who is based in Holland, is a high profile
fitness guru who is reportedly sought by the Indian Cricket Board as a
replacement for Adrian le Roux, who joined the South African national
team earlier this month.
World No 5 squash player Natalie Grinham, is also said to be interested
in McCaw.
News that McCaw's application to join the AsiaCom Project team was
rejected by Damien Kelly, the head of the unit for the project, is indeed
Nicol, will now have her fitness training charted by Australian fitness
trainer Sean Strugess, together with other scientists and physiologists
from the National Sports Institute.
One wonders if Nicol was consulted when McCaw was left out of her
While it should be lauded there are foreign sports scientists,
physiologists, bio-mechanics, physiotherapists, fitness trainers and
masseurs who want to help our athletes, it is hoped they have a track
record of achievements.
There have been many cases in the past - especially in soccer - where
foreign coaches come to Malaysia to ply their trade but end up taking
courses conducted by the FA of Malaysia and the Asian Football
Confederation (AFC).
More often than not, these coaches just circulate in this region.
If they are that good, why aren't they employed in their own country?
We should seek foreign expertise in areas where we lack, but it must
not be for the sake of hiring a foreigner.
At worst, our athletes must not be short-changed at the expense of
someone out to gain something from the programme.
Good coaches remain in the background, especially in triumph but take
the heat when the going is tough.
It is an unrewarding job, but ask any good coach and he will speak of
his private moments where he has enjoyed his moment of glory without
There have been some good coaches who have come to our shores, but
their stints are cut short because they are true professionals with no
More often than not, it is the coaches who play politics that stay here
the longest - even if it means making compromises on their charges.
For the sake of Malaysian sports, let's all be professional in every
sense of the word and give sports a chance to strive in this country on
fair playing terms.

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