# Tournament to be annual affair to foster friendship among umpires
# MHC to provide necessary support and assistance – Dato Sri Subahan
By Rizal Abdullah
A piece of Malaysian hockey history was written in Ipoh, Perak recently when the Malaysian Hockey Confederation Umpires Committee (MHCUC) hosted the inuagural MHCUC Cup for umpires.
The MHCUC Cup brought together 120 international and national hockey umpires in the country for the first time. Only umpires registered with the MHCUC were eligible to participate in the tournament.
Organizing chairman Kanaisan Kanapathy, who is also the Perak Umpires Committee chairman, said six states competed in the inaugural tournament. The six were Selangor, Penang, Johor, Armed Forces, Malacca and Perak.
The tournament, held at the Sultan Azlan Shah Stadium in Ipoh, saw Malacca crowned as the inaugural champions. Perak emerged second and Armed Forces third.
International umpire Nazmi Kamaruddin of Malacca was named as the Player of the Tournament while national umpire Azmi Yahya of Perak was the top scorer with five goals. Malacca goalkeeper Amirul Aiman was named The Best Goalkeeper. Selangor won the Fair Play award.
A unique feature of the tournament was that the players, umpires, officials, team coaches and managers and even the organizing committee were made up of umpires.
State Executive Councillor for Youth and Sports Datuk Shahrul Zaman Yahya contributed RM5,000 while manager of Amir Sports Company Shahrizal Mohd Yousof sponsored the trophy, prizes and souvenirs worth RM3,000.
“Through this tournament we also saw the ability and skills of the umpires as a hockey player,” said Kanaisan, adding that more importantly the tournament is to “foster friendship among umpires”.
MHC president Dato Sri Subahan Kamal, who gave away the prizes hopes the tournament will be an annual affair and assured that MHC will provide the necessary support and assistance.
Subahan also praised the role and responsibility of hockey umpires to date in the development of the hockey in Malaysia.