Posts Tagged ‘FAM League’

Kuching FA v ATM, Sunday 13th May 2018, 4.15pm

May 25, 2018

Kuching is over on the Borneo bit of Malaysia. It’s somewhere that Jen and I had been before to stay in a couple of the nearby national parks. Kubar national park was ok, but we didn’t see a lot of wildlife. I think the highlight was a grub that we spotted on the path as we hiked to a waterfall.

Bako national park is much better. We’d last stayed there a few months ago and the highlight of that trip was seeing a snake eating a lizard. We were walking on one of the trails near the camp and spotted the snake ahead of us. He was obviously engrossed in something and as we got close we realised that he was attempting to scoff a lizard.

I know you aren’t supposed to interfere in these things or even touch the wildlife, but I’ve always fancied myself as a bit of a Steve Irwin type. After all, messing around with the wildlife rarely did him any harm. I’d had a bit of success in catching a slow worm on the North Yorks moors last year and so I thought I’d catch this snake too.

I’ve no idea if the snake was venomous or not, even after a subsequent google search, but there was no way he was going to drop his dinner to give me a cautionary nip. On the other hand, his Dad might have been keeping an eye out for him and so I moved them from the path into the undergrowth and we watched him finish his lunch.

We stayed at Bako again this trip and whilst we didn’t see any snakes we did get up close to a few proboscis monkeys and plenty of macaques. The macaques are no big deal as I see them every morning driving to work but proboscis monkeys in the wild are a lot rarer.

There were also a few wild pigs knocking around. We watched one eating a particularly chewy looking octopus on the beach. The last time we were here I gave the pigs a drink of beer by tipping it down from the seating area outside of our hut, but by the time the pigs turned up on this visit I only had the one can left and there was no way they were getting that.

After a Saturday night in Bako we took the boat back along the coast to Kuching. Our flight wasn’t until the evening and so that gave us the opportunity of taking in a third tier game at the Negeri Stadium.

The taxi driver knew his stuff and in addition to taking us to the right place, he pointed out the rest of the stadia in the complex. There’s a new football stadium, although he reckoned that it rarely hosted games, a couple of practice pitches and stadiums for swimming and diving, hockey and basketball. I could probably live quite happily in Kuching, even if they didn’t have snakes, pigs or monkeys.

Whilst he knew all about the layout of the stadia complex, our taxi driver was less well-informed on the third division fixture list and he was concerned that we might have turned up for nothing. He very kindly collared someone who looked like he knew what he was doing to check that there was definitely a game taking place.

The bloke was a volunteer for the Kuching club and he took us in through the main entrance and up to the VIP Area. He advised us to sit in the press box, so that we could recharge our phones if we wished and he later sent someone up with a large electric fan for us. Perfect.

The Negeri Stadium seemed quite old. We were in the covered main stand. The rest of the ground comprised of a concrete open-ended horseshoe with a roof over the section opposite to us. I don’t think I saw anyone in any of the other stands.

The visitors, ATM, are the Malaysian Army team. I’ve no idea if the players are all serving soldiers or if they are allowed to draft a few ringers in. I was disappointed in their choice of kit, an unusual blue shirts with red shorts combo. They should wear camouflage or khaki kit really, unless it’s a cup final where they could turn out in something with plenty of braid on it.

Kuching were dressed up as Atletico Madrid.

As kick-off approached a few fans started to file in, most of them sitting to our right. There were probably about two hundred altogether. Whilst the majority seemed to be supporting the home side, most of the noise came from half a dozen military men, sat up at the back.

Both sides had early chances and it was the Army who took the lead after twenty minutes with a close range shot through a melee of defenders. Kuching had plenty of chances but ATM clinched the points with a second goal a quarter of an hour from the end.


UKM FC v Melaka SAMB FC, Sunday 22nd May 2016, 4.45pm

September 4, 2016


After the previous week’s 9-a-side effort I was keen to see a proper game and what better than a third tier clash pitching the National University of Malaysia against the Melaka Water Corporation?

That morning we’d moved out of the hotel that we’d temporarily been staying in and into a house. A house that came complete with a permanently startled looking lizard.


The move didn’t take much doing as these days we’ve pared our travelling stuff down to a suitcase full each and so after lunch we drove north for an hour to the Stadium Mini UKM at Bandar Bari Bangu. It was free to get in and we took seats in the single stand that held around five hundred. Or at least it potentially held five hundred. The visit of the men from the Water Board hadn’t really brought the crowds out and the stand was almost empty.


Elsewhere in the ground we had a dozen or so travelling fans in a corner making plenty of noise with a couple of drums and another twenty spectators who had parked their cars on a hill on the opposite side of the pitch and were watching the game from there.


The teams came onto the pitch to the sound of the Champions League walk-out music. Very professional, although it did seem a little over the top. There was no time for the teams to settle as within the first twenty seconds the Uni goalie had brought a Water Board striker down in the box.

The penalty was successfully dispatched to put the visitors a goal up.


The lead didn’t last though and within ten minutes of going behind the students were level after someone poked the ball home during a goalmouth scramble.

I thought the standard was pretty decent, although I’ve no idea if the players really were all students or water board employees. Perhaps there were a few ringers on show. Regardless, the quality of play was a lot better than the Northern League games that I’d watched a couple of weeks earlier.


At half-time I bought a burger and a hot dog for a combined total of less than a quid. They were both quite good. They didn’t seem to sell many though and it seemed as if most of the crowd were content to wait and then eat the remaining stock cold when it was given away towards the end of the game.

In the second half the visitors took control and went ahead  with a header from a corner before doubling their lead on the hour when a quick break left the home defence all over the shop and the ball was knocked into an empty net.


The Water Board keeper made three good saves from chances where UKM should really have scored before letting a twenty-five yarder go through his hands and legs to reduce the deficit. That’s the way it finished.