Celebrity Dose for the World Cup
04 Feb 2002 15:07
Malaysian ex-internationals including members of the 1975 World Cup team and local movie and music celebrities took to the field Sunday in an exhibition match to promote the 10th Men's World Cup.
Held at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil - the venue for the World Cup finals from Feb 24-March 9 - the match was witnessed by some 5,000 enthusiastic fans.
Malaysian Hockey Federation (MHF) Deputy President Tan Sri P. Alagendra said the event was part of on-going efforts to create awareness and stoke interest among locals in the World Cup.
"We will be having more promotional activities across the country in the run-up to the World Cup," said Alagendra, who is also World Cup Organising Committee Deputy Chairman.
Among the former Malaysian World Cuppers and Olympians who took part in the friendly were National Assistant Coach Stephen Van Huizen, Len Oliveiro, Colin Sta Maria, Poon Foke Loke, K. Balasingam and S. Balasingam and recently-retired most capped player in Malaysia, Nor Saiful Zaini.
Oliveiro, Fook Loke and both Balasingams played in the ’75 World Cup squad who finished a magnificent fourth in the 3rd Men’s World Cup here. Kuala Lumpur is the only city to host the World Cup twice.
The celebrities included actors from the local film KL Menjerit and radio station, Radio Era, announcers such as Rosyam Nor, Najman Mohammad and Danny (X-Factor).
For the record, the ex-internationals won 4-1 with two goals from former national women's player Teh Siew Bee, MHF Vice President Dato' Bashir Ahmad, and Sta Maria. Shah Faizal was the scorer for the celebrities.
The umpires for the match were MHF deputy president Tan Sri P.Alagendra and National team manager Dato R.Yogeswaran.
The team manager for the ex-internationals was Malaysian Hockey Federation vice president Dato’ Seri Abdul Manap Ibrahim, while MHF treasurer S.Perampalam was the coach. The manager for the celebrities was Keith Fowler and coach, Harminder Singh.
Malaysian team Head Coach Paul Lissek, who played for Germany in the ’75 World Cup , sat on the technical bench with former Adidas chief here Udo Eimer and MHF Media Officer Frankie d’Cruz.
The World Cup theme song ‘Stick’- in Malay, English, Chinese and Tamil- was also officially launched the same evening. Each CD single, containing all four versions, are being sold at RM 10 each.
At half-time A ‘Penalty Flick’ competition was held for fans who tried to put the ball past a former national goalkeeper Zulkifli Abbas. Five won flight tickets from Air Asia.
Members of the current national team, who were on the stands this time, signed autographs at a meet-the fans session after the match.