Read the New Straits Times report in February 2011 here, Ismail Abu's case here. Read Voice in Sports, always a voice of reason, here and here.
Read the interview with the Star in March 2009 here and also Beng Hai does Malaysia proud here. Also read Beng Hai terap disiplin tinggi here, setting Hai standards here and some of the issues raised in 2008/2009 here.
Now let's read the Star's Tai-tanic here.
Particularly this paragraph: “It was a period of turbulence. It was a period of fire fighting to get the house in order. The problems ranged from missing training, faking injury, financial problems (owing money to loan sharks), Internet gambling, skipping gym to play kuda machine, match-fixing, coming to morning training drunk, skipping training after a night out drinking, clubbing into the wee hours of the morning, poor injury management (some injured for 1-2 years), poor training attitude and commitment, poor fitness and strength, and, in 2011, use of recreational drugs as well.”
This particular list was part of Beng Hai's conclusion which read:
It is clear that the spill-over from earlier problems or approach is taking affect of the team. However we must be positive that we are not too far away from qualifying for the Olympic Games or World Cup. The players' natural talent have made the turn-around easier but whether we get to the next level depends on the small and minor details in getting all the things right.
He mentioned the 2002 World Cup and the 2009/2010 turbulent period before adding in the following paragraph that after 2010, he had managed to eradicate most of the problems or contain it and focused on chasing results.
His recommendation, in his own words: "My recommendation should also be concurrently implemented with the shortcomings for the OQ (Olympic Qualifiers). Together with better problem solving solutions we should be able to address the source of the problem.
The Australian for example after the Montreal Olympics established the Australian Institute of Sports to address their humiliation of not winning a single gold medal. It was made worse when the Australian hockey team lost to New Zealand for the gold medal.
Australian hockey always finished among the top 6 in every Olympic. Did they win the gold the very next Olympics after forming the AIS? It took the Australians 28 years to solve whatever issues they had.
Australia finally won the gold medal in Athens in 2004. In Beijing, the men came home with the bronze.
The Malaysian hockey issues are different from that of Australia but the Decline of Asian Hockey by BBC's Ken Wilson should be used to probe further into finding the remedy. Listen to it here
In Beng Hai's report, he also posed the question whether there was an evolution after 2009, while pointing out in 2012, Malaysia registered an all-time high of 1,119 points to be ranked 13 in the FIH rankings.
In what I believe is truly an in-depth and honest assessment of what ails the game today, Beng Hai offered a very frank take.
In compiling a brief dossier of each player, Beng Hai was objective in his judgement. Praising when needed and pointing out weaknesses when required.
Among the shortcomings at the qualifiers, he said, was anger management among the players. Failure would result in getting carded. Internally he revealed the coaches had imposed monetary fines to deter the players from losing their head.
For every single shortcoming highlighted, Beng Hai proposed a solution. In order to move forward in any aspect of life, one has to be self-introspective, open to criticism and open to ideas.
Beng Hai's report was thought-provoking, intended to invite the hockey fraternity to discuss and dissect every issue. One has to wonder why the ruckus after it was leaked!