Monday, October 22, 2012

Illegitimate influence of sponsors in Malaysian chess?

Perhaps the clearest example of this influence happens with the Olympiads. Who actually funds the Olympiad has always been shrouded in mystery. This is a little peculiar if we think about it. Most sponsors want to be known. Sponsorship of sporting events is akin to advertising.

So I think it is reasonable to assume that there must be some other agenda. I have struggled with trying to understand what this agenda could be and I can't come up with anything better than that they just want to play God.

It's a supreme statement of arrogance directed against the people who fund chess around the year. Year after year come rain or shine; thunderstorms or natural calamities. Yes, I am talking about the parents. They don't just fund the one off tournaments but all tournaments. They fund the travel and expenses; they fund the training.

It's a supreme act of arrogance directed against the players. Those that studies chess, takes the stress of tournaments, struggle to improve. All that time and energy as well as money spent counts for nothing in those people's eyes.

Every two years they decide who gets to play for Malaysia. And they ignore the results of the actual selection. They know better than the objective test of a tournament. In that one statement every 2 years they tell everybody in the chess community that their contributions means nothing. That these people who hides in the dark know better and the senior squad of Malaysia has decayed as a result. (There has only been one junior player who won his place in a proper selection for the senior squad. And that player was hammered publicly for the audacity of winning and selection quickly withdrawn after that).

But do these sponsors really know better? Think about it. Could that be the reason why we have such PR campaigns in Malaysia touting certain players before the event? Could that be the reason why certain tournaments seem suspect and pairings appear to be manipulated? Could this be the genesis of our sick chess culture? The bannings without grounds etc. Is it to justify the sponsors decision that is not based on chess?

I mean why do it this way if those guys are really the superior players?

What is the result of all these illicit influence? Are we not sending kup chai's who think they are Ferrari's into battle for us? Are we not sending players before they are ready and thus jeopardising their future in chess? Why do this when we have better players?

Now the big question before us is should we respect the people who insults us in such a manner. Have they not damaged Malaysian chess for these 30 plus years? Have they not given the Malaysian chess community huge problems to overcome instead of a toolbox to develop to the next level.

How long will it now take for us to undo this terrible damage to Malaysian chess. In which direction has Malaysian chess been travelling for the last 30 years plus relative to our neighbours, relative to the world. Once we taught chess to China.

Can we put a stop to this at the next AGM and start our journey forward again?

Question: Is that why we look so hard at the games around the world? Could it be that it is too painful to watch our kup chai's crash and burn and turning into bicycles? Can we change this so that we too will see Malaysian Champions instead of just reading about other people's achievements?

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