I hope this proposal will be considered objectively.
I believe it is still possible to continue the forward momentum that we now have. This is what I propose. Still use the top 8 or 10 from the National Close for a round robin with the top rated players in Malaysia. Presumably the IM's. Say top 4 from ratings?
This round robin is important. The players from National Close would have to determine the right strategy for an Open competition. And then they have to learn how to prepare for known opponents in the round robin. This is also practice for the Olympiad.
No one from outside these group should be allowed parachute in. The top 4 or top 6 from the round robin gets to go to the Olympiad. No additional inclusions like we saw in SEA games.
This will send a powerful message to our players. Stay current and stay sharp or you are out. Lets keep our focus towards the future. Then we will see Malaysian magic.
In today's internet world there is no place you can run from the chess fans. Wherever you play there will be chess fans following. And the game does show the level of the players maturity and thinking. Our results also reflect on the level of support and training; the effectiveness of the Federation. All this will show up at the Olympiad.
So for now, lets learn from Chong Wei and Nichol David. When they play they carry the hopes and aspirations of the Country. So they have to accept that. If we send mentally toughened players out to play eventually we too may be able to contribute to Malaysian Sport by showing them the winning mindset. Afterall we are the most popular mind sport in Malaysia.
So we should be in front of the curve. Not lagging far behind.
For that to happen, we also need to properly train our players before they go. I am assuming that we still have the big surplus from Asian Amateur and Melaka. So use the money wisely. Use it for Malaysian Chess. There should be enough not only for the training but also to sponsor or heavily subsidise the trip.
Better late than never. There is still time to put up a forward thinking written selection criteria.
Do this and you can go up that podium in your finery and make all your proclamations with pride and dignity.
All my best