...He Was Not!
The Higher Education League (Liga IPT) 2011 has begun since early March with a number of higher education institutions in Terengganu taking part. Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin (UniSZA) are playing in the second division while Universiti Malaysia Terengganu (UMT) and Kolej Komuniti Terengganu (KKT) are trying to qualify to the divisional tournament from their Eastern qualifying group.
Unfortunately, mad redo1 is yet to be at any of the matches due to other engagements or fixture mix-up. The other day he went to the Gong Badak Sports Complex to cover a Liga IPT match between UMT and IKIP.
As it happened the week before when there was supposed to be a match between UniSZA and UniSel, there was also no Liga IPT match anywhere within the sports complex. Instead the Terengganu Sports School, SMK Bukit Nanas were taking on SMK Tun Hussien Onn of Johor in the 2011 U-17 Ministry of Education League.
Since he was already there, mad redo1 decided to snap a few shots of the match which already went underway. The sight of the pitch gave him much horror as it was already in a bad state due to the heavy rain that has fallen over the past few days.
To compound the matter, an U-14 match between the two schools had already taken place prior to the U-17 match on the same pitch. Terengganu were a goal to the good at the time.
Then the sky opened up and torrential rain with strong wind engulfed the complex leaving almost everybody drenched. The pitch was quickly becoming waterlogged and play was impossible. Fortunately the interval saved the players from taking further punishment from mother nature.
Many were thinking the match would have to be abandoned due to the state of the pitch. Most parts were waterlogged and the markings were not clear at all. However the match commissioner gave the thumbs up for the match to go on.
It was a decision that defied belief. Later mad redo1 heard one of the reason for the match to go on was to teach the players to play in such conditions.
What the heck?
Did he realise that playing in such conditions would invite potential injuries to the young players? Or there was no good football possible except for the 'Wimbledon' kind that kick the ball as far up the field as possible and hope it would bring an opening to the opponents' goal out of it.
To make matter worse was the way the referee was handling the match. He seemed to happily blow every time a Johor player went down and was quite generous in handing out cards to the home team players, which resulted in a double yellow for one just prior to half-time. However he was very lenient when it came to the visitors.
This drew howls of frustration from the majority of the crowd which already entered the officials area due to the heavy rain.
Then someone from the home camp shouted angrily in a general direction, more due to frustration than any intention to cause any trouble. Unfortunately, the match commissioner who was quite experienced due to his long involvement in football refereeing responded, which was surprising.
It became a heated exchange during which the commissioner shouted for the man to 'bark' outside. Being equalled to a dog was the last straw and the crowd became rowdy. A few more joined in and suddenly nobody care about the match anymore, and the fact that Johor managed to level the score late in the match.
It was a tense moment with the match officials having to stay on the pitch to avoid confrontation while the commissioner quickly packed his things and went into hiding near to the home dressing room.
It was a situation that could be avoided had the match commissioner practice restraint and patience. Instead of responding the way he did, the match commissioner should act nonchalant and just record the progress of the match and its situation.
Perhaps, he should be wiser and not continuing with the match at all in the first place due to the pitch and weather conditions during the match.