Category Archives: Sports

Malaysia offers assistance to problem-plagued Sochi

KUALA LUMPUR — Malaysia has extended an offer to Sochi to help host the XXII Winter Olympic Games, in light of the Russian city’s apparent lack of readiness in organising the event as tweeted by unhappy global media representatives who arrived in their hotels only to find toilets, doors, power outlets and other basic amenities in sorry state.

malaysia_winter_olympicsSpeaking at Sri Perdana today, Prime Minister YAB Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib Razak said that the widely-known problems faced by the organisers prompted him to come up with the idea of holding the winter games in Malaysia, seeing how “we should always help our neighbours who are in trouble”.

“It broke my heart when I read all those mean tweets and unflattering pictures of construction materials in hotel rooms, yellow-coloured tap water and non-functioning toilet seats,” said Najib. “I know how hard it is to organise an event like this, and I asked myself, what can we do to help a nation in need?

“Suddenly I had an epiphany — if they’re not ready, we’ll do it for them!”

The PM pointed out that Malaysia has all the necessary facilities, infrastructure and weather conditions to run the winter olympics.

“We have so many hotels, all ready to accept the huge number of guests, seeing how it’s not peak period in our tourist calendar. Our airports are primed to receive all our visitors without problem,” said Najib, adding that while KLIA 2 may not be completely functional, “it’s no more ‘complete’ than the Sochi facilities, so it’s not a major step-down for the would-be passengers”.

“Fine, we have summer-based stadiums as opposed to the ice-based facilities in Sochi, but it’s nothing that a little adaptation to the tools cannot fix. How hard is it to change from skis to wheels?”

The PM said that for winter sport events that ‘really, really need’ ice or snow, there are available private facilities which can be used.

An artist's impression of an adapted bobsledding

An artist’s impression of an adapted bobsledding

“We have a few winter-based theme parks and arenas for that. The Winter Wonderland at i-City is a marvelous spot that can handle all the wintery stuff people from Canada, Russia, Europe and other icy-places want. The ice-skating rinks at Sunway Pyramid and Mutiara Damansara are also open for business, what more do you want?

“Plus, I don’t see why our world-famous water slides can’t handle the bobsled and luge events,” he added. “In fact, I think the sport will be much more interesting when the sleds end up in the pool of water, creating huge, gigantic splashes. So the points can be based not only on speed, but also on the size of the water splashes.”

Najib, telling the media that he’ll be contacting his counterpart in Moscow to discuss the relocation of the venue, medals as well as tools and officials, also said that those who worried about the stifling heat of Malaysia’s tropical climate need not fret.

“All our facilities are air-conditioned, or at least equipped with good fans and ice-cream stalls,” he said reassuringly. “And in case you don’t remember, the recent ‘cold draft’ that brought down the temperatures in some parts of Malaysia has not left us. You’d still need those nice, thick jackets to walk around in those chilly nights.

“We’re cool.”

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Malaysia beats Arsenal 25,741 – 0

KUALA LUMPUR — In what many pundits considered a ‘grossly unfair match’, Malaysia’s national football squad tonight beat visiting English Premier League club Arsenal 25,741-nil, with most of the goals scored in the last 15 minutes.
The Malayan Tigers began their onslaught on the oblivious-looking Gunners right from the start, when Mohd Aidil Zafuan shot from the middle of the field squarely into the helpless Gunners’ goal. None of the visitors could do anything, seeing how the ball travelled at the speed of light.
Half a minute later, the ball found its way into Arsenal’s goal yet again, when Zafuan’s mental powers willed it away from the feet of Aaron Ramsey and travelled past goalie Wojciech Szczesny right into the net.
Roughly two seconds later, Kunalan Subramaniam stole the ball from a shocked Carl Jenkinson, dribbled playfully around the superstar and shot nonchalantly, while blindfolded, into the visitors’ net.
And by the time the score went past the five thousand mark nearing half time, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger knew that the fight was over. Throwing his arms into the air hopelessly, he took off his pants as a sign of defeat and left the Stadium Malawati to express his disgust.
The humiliation by Malaysia XI continued in the second half, the home team deciding not to let the visitors off easy. As the Gunners looked on dejectedly, envying the Tigers’ almost magical footballing skills, the local boys had a feast, scoring an average of 138 goals a minute. By this time, no one kept track of who scored the goals — everyone on the field wearing the black and yellow jersey had a ball, pun intended.
As the whistle blew, head coach Datuk Rajagopal was seen waking up from his nap and going onto the field, consoling the Arsenal players, who were mostly crying their eyes out and collapsing in shame.
In the post match Press conference, Rajagopal said that he was generally pleased with his boys’ performance, but cautioned them not to be complacent when facing two more EPL teams, Liverpool and Chelsea, visiting in a few weeks’ time.
“While this was sort of a ‘warm up game’ tonight, I expect the Tigers to put more effort in thrashing the English teams,” said Rajagopal. “I’ve told them, no less than a hundred thousand goals for each game.”


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Shah Alam school keen on signing Rooney

ROONEY: Reportedly in talks with Cikgu Johan

SEKSYEN 19, SHAH ALAM — A primary school in Shah Alam, Selangor has expressed interest in signing Manchester United star Wayne Rooney for their 2011 inter-school football campaign. Announcing the grand intention at a Press Conference today, Sekolah Rendah Agama (Integrasi) Seksyen 19 football coach cum Guru Sukan (Evening Session) Cikgu Johan Johari, 32, said that the school is currently negotiating with the English player’s agents to bring him in before the new school session begins in January.

“We have actually been considering signing Mr Rooney since the middle of last year,” said Cikgu Johan. “But there was always some sort of issue that cropped up, like lack of funding and immigration issues. Plus, at the time, Mr Rooney wasn’t really interested in leaving MU. Now that he’s announced his departure from the Red Devils, he’s certainly welcomed here in Skuad Harimau Kecil,” added Cikgu Johan, referring to the school team’s nickname.

Cikgu Johan said that the £20 million Premier League striker would be a natural addition to the team. “We welcome him with open arms, despite all the personal issues that have plagued him recently. For us at the school, we believe in second chances, and we look at him as a footballer first, and celebrity second. We think his playing style fits our team best, where attack forms the backbone of our strategy, coupled with a strong defence and flexible middle players.

“He’s quite talented,” said Cikgu Johan, matter-of-factly. “Almost as good as I was when I was younger back in college, I might add.

SRA(I) SEKSYEN 19: May be future home for Rooney

“So he’ll fit in quite effortlessly in our team. We’ve had a vacancy in our striker position after our previous attacker Kamil Yaakob graduated Year 6 and took his talent to MCKK last year, so his timing to leave MU is perfect.”

“Mr Rooney would find himself really at home here in Seksyen 19,” he added warmly. “The people here are really friendly, houses are quite cheap and good food is aplenty. For example, my house up in Jalan Landak is just a short walking distance to where the Nasi Lemak Ayam Rempah stall is.. And there are two 7-Elevens in the vicinity, not to mention clinics, polyclinics and 24-hour mamak shops. It’s paradise. In fact, I believe his home maker wife Colleen would find Shah Alam a very condusive place to start a family, what with caring neighbours and a close-knit community.”

Cikgu Johan said that the school was prepared to pay the multi-million ringgit cost to get hold of the football star, currently spokesperson for a multitude of international brands and reportedly earns more than £100,000 a week in wages and sponsorship deals.

“We had anticipated the cost, really. We are quite prepared to spend the necessary amount to get talent. We have quite a healthy bank account, thanks to our many activities the past couple of years, like Open Day, Hari Bendera and the PIBG Charity Dinner,” said Cikgu Johan confidently.

The teacher however said that if Rooney decides to come over, it would not be a walk in the park for the star.

“Look, we want to pay him money to help us win games and the championship,” said Cikgu Johan. “It’s not going to be a holiday. We train very hard, three times a week in the evenings, so he would have to step it up. He may be a star but here, Mr Rooney would have to prove to me and his team mates his worth.

“I’ll start him in easy games first, to expose him slowly to the high standards here. If he shows that he can be as good as my boys, he can slowly he can climb his way up and start in important games, like the one with Sekolah Menengah Seapark in July. If he shows me that he can really play, I’ll include him in our championship matches later in the year.

“But opportunities don’t come easily. If he’s worthy, he can go far.”


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Rain shamans battle it out at Malaysian Formula One GP

CHAOS REIGNS: Raincoulds hammering the Sepang Circuit

SEPANG — As teams, big and small fight for the crown and precious championship points at the Malaysian Formula One Grand Prix today, a smaller but more important battle is under way in the pit — a war amongst bomoh hujan, or rain shamans.

Other than multi-million dollar machines and systems, quick cars, hardworking support staff, tyre choices and ultra-competitive drivers, teams know how important it is to have weather on their side. While sunny and hot days are optimum for a quick laptime, the occasional rain also helps when situations warrant it, hence some team bosses who know better have included these weather-manipulating experts in their payroll.

“Oh yes, we’ve hired Pak Salim, from Kuala Selangor to help us with the rain,” said Datuk Seri Tony Fernandes, Lotus Racing team principal. “He’s quite well-known in the area for his prowess. My neighbour used him to avert rain during his daughter’s wedding last year, and even though the whole of Kuala Selangor was drenched in thrunderstorm, our housing area was dry as a bone. Amazing.”

New entry Lotus, whose cars aren’t as quick as the more established machines of Ferrari, McLaren, Red Bull, Mercedes and Renault, depend on outside factors such as wet weather to have a chance at securing any points this season. While consistently beating the other new teams such as rival Virgin Racing, Lotus cars, piloted by Heikki Kovalainen and Jarno Trulli, have not had the capability to give a serious challenge in the race.

“Well, it can only be expected, really. It’s our first year,” said Fernandes. “I’m completely happy to beat the other new teams, and am proud of my guys who have shown such great effort to come up with the machines in such a short time. But as you can see, a little rain can help too.”

Fernandes explained that while the other drivers struggle in the rain, his team has had ample time to get accustomed to driving on slippery, wet tarmac. So that is why the bomoh hujan is now part of the team strategy.

“We’re a Malaysian team-lah. We’ve gotten Jarno and Heiki to get used to our weather — hot one minute, pouring another. While sporadic showers here and there will drive the likes of Alonso and Hamilton crazy, my guys are lovin’ it. I’ve gotten Pak Salim to hold off the rainclouds at certain laps, and bring on the thunderstorm on some others, to fit our racing strategy. Heh, you’ll be seeing some funny Europeans spinning around today, while our Malaysia-Boleh machines cruising to the championship points through all the chaos,” said Fernandes, gleefully.

SLIPPERY SPANIARD: Ferrari's Fernando Alonso struggling in the rain at the Malaysian GP qualifying yesterday

Meanwhile, a check with the Mercedes team, which is sponsored by Petronas, revealed that they have also engaged in the services of a rain shaman.

“Yes, we’ve realised the importance of a bormoh hoojan,” said team principal Ross Brawn. “Micheal (Schumacher) had insisted that we engaged one, especially for the Malaysian GP. He told me that while he may be the rainmeister, it helps to only have rain when we need it, and not when we’re on full slicks (dry tyres).”

Brawn refused to reveal who their rain shaman was, but a source within the team said that it was Wak Karim Seman, from Taiping, who is a regular amongst wedding planners in Perak.

“Taiping, as you know, is the wettest part of Malaysia,” said the source, who didn’t want to be named. “So you know this guy knows what he’s doing, keeping rain away when people want to have their outdoor kenduri.”

The source also said that the team is well aware of Pak Salim and Lotus Racing’s plans to utilise his skills.

“We’re not alone. I hear a few other teams have also hired rain doctors and shamans to protect themselves against Pak Salim. Some brought all the way from South America. But as for us, we’re ready for his tricks. He may be big in Kuala Selangor, but this is not Kuala Selangor. Let’s see if his rainclouds will stand against the power of Wak Karim’s Baling Baju Atas Bumbung magic. We’ll see.”


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Malaysian football stars confident to beat World

PROOF OF GREATNESS: The Malaysian football team after decimating Vietnam for the gold

KUALA LUMPUR — Fresh from the glorious SEA Games gold medal victory over wimpy Vietnam recently, the invincible and utterly superhuman Malaysian football squad today challenged the entire football teams from all over the world to a match.

“We’re unbeatable, to be frank,” said a beaming team captain Mohd Aidil Zafuan Abd Radzak matter-of-factly, as he casually pumped iron while being interviewed at Wisma FAM. “At first, we only knew amongst ourselves that we were the best in the world, nay, the whole galaxy. But now that we’ve got the SEA Games gold, it’s fact.

THE BEST OF THE BEST: Aidil glowing with stunning aura of greatness

“So the team and I have decided to throw the challenge to all the Beckhams, Henrys, Kakas, Rooneys and Ronaldos out there, and their overpaid teams, to come and try to beat us. If they dare.”

The dashing and perfectly sculptured Aidil said that the Malaysian footballers were ‘hungry for action’ and want to ‘scalp some so-called superstars’, after easily bulldozing through the obviously inferior South East Asian teams in Vientiane, Laos, a week ago.

“The teams from the region were, how shall I say this delicately, unworthy of our presence. They were quite honestly, pathetic, compared to the flawless strategies and extraordinary skills my teammates and I display,” he laughed, as his posse of 20 or so fans and groupies nodded in agreement and scantily-clad girls rub lotion of his ripping biceps, while he sipped on hot Darjeeling tea. “I have more skills and greatness in my left toe than they have in their whole teams.”

Aidil’s teammate Mohd Sabre Mat Abu added that unlike most world superstars, the Malaysian players only play for the love of the game. “I’ve been observing how these so-called ‘superstars’ have been traded around the English, European and South American leagues like meat,” he said, as he majestically posed for fans screaming from across the street, taking pictures. “At hundreds of millions of pounds, we the superhuman players in the Malaysian team, feel that the money is better spent on charity, instead of wasting it on those bafoons. How silly, they are childish amateurs compared to us.

“So this is a way to change that perception, by thrashing them and telling the team owners to stop wasting good money. I’d love to teach that pretty boy Beckham a thing or two about proper football.”

Aidil said that the date, venue and even the rules for the match would be left to the would-be losers, the World’s superstars.

“We don’t care who we’ll play against, let alone where and when. If they want to be humiliated today, I’ll clear my schedule,” he said, grinning and displaying his perfectly aligned and pure white teeth. “The GQ magazine photoshoot can be done tomorrow.

“In fact, I don’t care how many of them, those so-called superstars, want to play in the game. They can play fair and substitute every two minutes if they want, or they can all play at the same time. My eleven can beat any number. The bigger their number, the better.”

Mohd Sabre added, “They can fill up the entire field, if they want. We are the Malaysian Tigers, and we are jantans. Far from being afraid, we shall destroy whatever false ego and reputation that they have,” he said, before shooing away the reporters dismissively from the room, to accommodate more groupies waiting outside.


Filed under National News, Sports, World News

Village buys Honda F1 team

PARIT PAYAU, PAHANG — Honda Formula One’s perilous fate was rescued yesterday when Parit Payau, a small village in Pahang, announced that it was buying over the troubled racing team.

The team's 2009 car at their Brackley plant

The team's 2009 car at their Brackley plant

The Brackley-based team faced an uncertain future after ailing manufacturer Honda pulled out of Formula One late last year due to financial pressures. There had been speculations of interested buyers since then, such as Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim, but none of them materialised. With over half a billion dollars needed to develop and run the machines and operate the team every year, the team was headed for doom.

Team principal Ross Brawn expressed his relief at the news, saying that he was ‘ready to split’ by the end of the month if no one had stepped up to rescue the team, who now plan to line up in Melbourne in March with Briton Jenson Button and Bruno Senna as their drivers.

“Well it’s about bloody time, ain’t it?” said Brawn. “I mean, here we were, 700 people building these beautiful machines, not knowing if they’d run this year,” he said.

“I sure am glad for those fine people up in Malaysia. God bless the village of Parit Payau.”

The village chief, Haji Nasrudin Ayob, when met, said that it has always been the village people’s dream of owning an F1 team, and that dream came true after their farms had a good harvest this year.

“Alhamdulillah, we finally got to do it. The kampung folk had been racing everything — tractors, harvesters and even buffaloes — to satisfy our racing needs. We wanted to have serious races, and now we can.”

Haji Nasrudin said that the purchase decision was made after a meeting at the Balai Raya. “We calculated our profit we got from the harvest, and decided that this was the perfect time.” He proudly showed the reporters some of the crop which was being harvested to be sold at hypermarkets in town. “This baby, and all her friends, will pay for the races throughout the 2009 season.”

Nasrudin showing off the crop which will finance the purchase

Nasrudin showing off the crop which will finance the purchase

Nasrudin revealed that the proposal to buy Honda F1 initially had faced criticism from some quarters in the village.

“Some of the younger people were against the plan at first, preferring to put the money into building a new school and a surau.

“We, the village council, understood their concern and had explained to them that this is for the greater good.

“They were not convinced. But what turned them around were these,” said Nasrudin, laughing while showing a stack of grandstand tickets and pit passes for every venue in the 2009 calendar.

“I also told them that one of the venues was Dubai, and that they could easily make a detour to perform their umrah before they get to the race.”

The new team owners were confident of their 2009 chances.

“The team now has all of us at Parit Payau praying and willing for their success before each race. The kampung’s spirit will roar along with every rev of the engine.

“Get ready to eat dust, Ferrari and McLaren.”


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