* Johor State Government biggest donor with RM500,000
* Defending champions India gunning for third title
* Argentina back to compete in the six nation meet
* RTM is the official broadcaster for the first time
The fifth edition of the Sultan of Johor Cup – the only Under-21 Invitational International tournament in the world – received a massive boost for this year’s meet, raising a total of RM1.86 million in sponsorship.
The Johor State Government once again led the list of donors with RM500,000 followed by Astaka Padu and RTM, the official broadcasters of the six-nation tournament, with RM200,000 each.
The tournament which is recognised by the International Hockey Federation (FIH) will see defending champions India, last year’s runners-up Great Britain, inaugural champions Malaysia vying for honours with Australia, Argentina and Pakistan.
The Sultan of Johor Cup will be held at the Taman Daya Hockey Stadium in Johor Bahru from Oct 11-18.
The other big donors were Johor Corporation (JCorp), Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB), UEM, JBB Builder, UM Land, Genting Berhad, Atlan Holding Berhad (Naluri Properties), Ministry of Youth and Sports – with RM100,000 each.
UniKL, SAJ Holdings, Iskandar Waterfront pledged RM50,000 each while BCB Berhad pledged RM10,000.
It is the only Under-21 Invitational International tournament in the world and is duly features in the International Hockey Federation (FIH) calender.
Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) president Datuk Sri Subahan Kamal praised the Johor Hockey Association (JHA) for initiating the tournament which has seen teams clamouring to get invited.
Tunku Abdul Rahman, the Tunku Panglima of Johor who represented HRH Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar the Sultan of Johor received the sponsorship in a glittering ceremony at Hotel Puteri Pacific on Tuesday.
“It is has become a very important tournament not only for Malaysia but also for the other Asian teams like India and Pakistan to prepare their teams for the Junior Asian Cup tournament in Kuantan in November.
“The Asian meet also serves as the qualifier for the Junior World Cup. The top four teams in Kuantan will qualify for the World Cup.
“The Sultan of Johor Cup gives as the perfect ground to play against teams who are all ranked higher than Malaysia,” said Subahan.