The local and international sports arena, especially hockey, suffered a huge loss with the demise of the Sultan of Perak, Sultan Azlan Shah who is regarded as the ‘Father of Malaysian Hockey’ for his tremendous contributions to the sport over 41 years, both as a player and administrator.
Sultan Azlan Shah, 86, who started playing hockey since his school days, played for Perak during his hey days before being elected as the Malaysian Hockey Federation (now Malaysian Hockey Confederation) vice president in 1973.
As a centre-forward for the Perak Malays and Perak State teams, Sultan Azlan Shah was feared by his opponents for his speed as well as his dribbling skills on the field.
Sultan Azlan Shah possesses a staunch enthusiasm for sports, especially hockey as his love for hockey began during his schooldays.
Under his stewardship, Malaysian hockey was able to stand on the same platform of the big boys in world hockey like India, Pakistan, Australia and Holland to name a few.
It was also during his time that Malaysia was first given the honour to host the World Cup of hockey in 1975 where Malaysia finished an all time high of fourth in the 1975 edition.
Under his leadership, Malaysia were once again given the host job for the 2002 World Cup which was held at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil.
Upon the death of the then MHF president Tun Abdul Razak in 1976, Tun Hussein Onn stepped in as the President until 1981 before Sultan Azlan Shah took over the role of MHF President and stayed at the helm until 2005.
In 1997, Sultan Azlan Shah was elected as the President of the Asian Hockey Federation and remained the President until his demise today.
In 1992, Sultan Azlan Shah helped set up the Yayasan Hoki Malaysia, to enable hockey players in the country to enjoy a better benefits in terms of education, welfare and jobs.