[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index
Soccer-news on/from Burma
- Subject: Soccer-news on/from Burma
- From: bcn@xxxxxxxxx
- Date: Wed, 03 Jan 1996 09:13:00
Hi everyone & happy new year
We came across this newspaper article in De Telegraaf of December 19th, 1995.
De Telegraaf is the biggest neswspaper in The Netherlands, though also the
one cursed-on by everybody who's not reading it as being untrue, full of
gossip etcetera. However, since it is football-news, we want to share this
with Burmanet-S (soccer).
Burmese Junta makes all decisions in Myanmar soccerteam
NATIONAL COACH BLOK UNDER FIRE
by our correspondent Jos van Noord
(translator's (Gijs) note: I stayed as close to the original in
phrase-length and choice of words and expressions as possible)
CHIANG MAI, tuesday
Like a lame duck Ger Blok is moving between dressing rooms and dugout. While
the corporate colonels of Burma's military Junta - in the catacombs of the
new Asia Games-stadium in the Thai city of Chiang Mai - open their next can
of beer to celebrate the 1-0 victory over Laos, Blok hisses to the reporter:
"Congratulation? With what?"
Grinding his teeth: "Talk to the coach, the military-one over there, he
knows better about eveything!"
Us again: "We thought you are the coach....?"
Ger Blok, pissed of: "I have never really been the coach of this team."
Blok is angry, not to say raging with frustration. During the game he put
his hand to his head, when not he, but the colonels decided which player
were to take the penalty-kick. And moreover, Blok was stunned when it was a
Irritated so much that he bends forward, Blok is not permitted to talk to
the press. Colonel Tun Sein, the extremely un-sportive chef of the mission
of Burma at the SEA Games, gnarls to the reporter: "I forbid that he speaks
with you. Is that clear? After the competition you can speak with him as
much as you want."
Things are clearly not going well any more between Blok and Burma. Two years
ago he was brought to Burma by the regime to "save Burma's soccer". But some
time ago he anounced in the Singapore newspaper The Strait Times not to
continue with Burma again after the SEA-games. Blok: "I have been a coach
for 32 years. Some young players of the Burma-team are very talented, but
they do not get a chance to develop completely. That is very disappointing."
Not only Blok is critisizing on Burma: also the reverse is true. With his
tax-free monthly salary of 6500 US$, to insiders he earns more than a
hundred times the salary of the players. The 56 year old Blok, pemanently
residing with his wife in the five-star Inya Lake hotel in Rangoon, with a
car and chauffeur always at his service, is one of the best paid people in a
country as poor as a church mouse, and that has - considering the
achievements of the team - angered quite a few.
Burmas's top-players hardly earn more than a 150 US$ a month.
The plug was pulled when, one motnh before the SEA-games, the Burmese team
was beat by Bangladesh with 2-1. An official from the Burmese
soccer-federation then stated: "We pay him so much money, and we can't even
win from Bangladesh!" Behind the screen, soccer-officials of the Union of
Myanmar - lately the country's official name - said that "the players would
perform better if the salary of Blok was devided amongst them."
A frustrated Blok, who, angering the Burmese fans, put the favorite Kyi Lwin
and Maung Oo on the bench for some time, refuses to react on the
accusations, and also the colonels and generals, who by custom decide on
everything in the Burmese military dicatorship, and that in Chiang Mai have
the players in their grip completely, refuse to speak with the reporter: "To
the foreign press we have nothing to say."
Blok, suffering from back-aches, has made clear earlier that he was fed-up
with Burma's military dictators, but in Chiang Mai he does not want to make
any remarks on it, nor does he want to be photographed during the games.
Only when the remark is made that he has not done a lot to raise a decent
youth-soccer team, the soccer-trainer, that used to work very much with the
Dutch youth, explodes: "Nobody in the whole of Burma has worked harder than
me towards that. I have tried more than my best, but in Burma one is tied
hand and feet by the bureaucracy," according to Blok, referring to the
military authorities that often, without any specific knowledge about the
matter, do exactly what they feel like doing. "It became a very big
BCN is onafhankelijke stichting. Doel: Nederlandse samenleving informeren
over Burma. Het initieert en co-ordineert aktiviteiten die democratisering
en duurzame ontwikkeling bevorderen. Het geeft een positieve bijdrage aan
een constructieve dialoog tussen de diverse groeperingen.
visit these sights: