New directions for football devt

USHERING A NEW ERA: Lee (seated, centre) and other officials after the meeting between his ministry, FAS and MSNS at his office yesterday. — Photo by Davidson Kho.

KUCHING: Sarawak State Sports Council (MSNS) and the Football Association of Sarawak (FAS) are set to coordinate efforts in local youth football development.

Speaking to reporters yesterday, Assistant Minister of Sports Datuk Lee Kim Shin explained the reason behind the new initiative.

“All this while, there have been separate entities which run the youth football development here in the state. All that have got to change from now on,” he said.

He was referring to the prevailing situation in which the MSNS manages the state Sukma (Malaysia Games) team while FAS manages the state team competing in the national Under-21 inter-state tournament (the President’s Cup).

From here on, FAS will assume a bigger role in overseeing the development of youth football.

“There will no longer be separate teams for both the Sukma and President’s Cup tournaments
from now onwards,” Lee disclosed.

During the press conference at his office here at the Baitul Makmur building, Lee also announced that a new committtee will be formed to manage the new youth team.

A head coach will also be appointed to manage the team. Players will most probably be selected from the football development centres set up throughout the state by the MSNS in the last few years.

Lee also pointed out that among the main targets for the new youth team will be emerging as Sukma football champion in 2016 (when Sarawak will play host) and improving the performance level of the state team in the President’s Cup competition.

The press conference was also attended by Assistant Chief Secretary for Sports in the Ministry of Social Development Mering Wan, FAS president Datu Sudarsono Osman, FAS vice-president Razali Dolhan, MSNS director Francis Nyurang Ding, MSNS Sarawak Football Development Programme (SFDP) co-ordinator Lucas Kalang.