The International Hockey Federation (FIH) has announced the introduction of the prestigious, biennial HRH Sultan Azlan Shah Award and made a formal presentation to celebrate the FIH Honorary Membership bestowed upon the Sultan posthumously in 2014.
The ‘Member of Honour’ Award is presented to the late Sultan Azlan Shah by International Hockey Federation (FIH) President Leandro Negre at the official dinner of the 25th Sultan Azlan Shah Cup. The accolade was received by his heir, HRH Sultan Nazrin Shah.
Taking advantage of the occasion of the silver jubilee edition of the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup tournament which recently took place in Ipoh, Malaysia, the President of the International Hockey Federation, Mr. Leandro Negre, formally announced the creation of a special FIH award to honour the late HRH Sultan Azlan Shah during the official tournament reception.
The award is dedicated to the memory and spirit of the late HRH Sultan Azlan Shah, former King of Malaysia, whose commitment to and passion for hockey led to its growth and development during the decades of his Presidency of Malaysian and Asian Hockey.
His numerous accomplishments included creating a long-term athlete career program and sustainable education projects, as well as introducing the prestigious Sultan Azlan Shah Cup tournament which sees its 25th edition taking place this week. He envisioned and led the implementation of bold initiatives which promoted and globalized hockey, resulting in enormous growth and development of his favorite sport.
The award is designed to acknowledge and celebrate the actions and achievements undertaken by an individual who has made outstanding contributions to the hockey family and whose leadership, vision and drive make them an inspirational role model beyond the sport of hockey.
It is awarded to an individual (athlete, coach, umpire, or official) who best exemplifies extraordinary professional achievement both within and outside of hockey or a professional administrator or manager who works tirelessly to make hockey a high performing sport nationally, internationally and globally.
The award will be presented every two years during the FIH’s Ordinary Congress, provided a suitable candidate has been identified and selected by the FIH Executive Board. The FIH Executive Board bases their decision on the recommendation of the FIH Awards Panel, based on the evaluation of recommendations submitted by National Associations, Continental Federations, or individuals.
As part of the same function, the FIH President also made a formal presentation to HRH Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah, Sultan of the State of Perak and son of the late HRH Sultan Azlan Shah, presenting a certificate and memento to acknowledge and memorialize the FIH Honorary Membership bestowed upon HRH Sultan Azlan Shah posthumously during the FIH Congress in late 2014 to recognize his outstanding contribution and many years of dedicated service to the sport on the national, continental and international level.
FIH President Leandro Negre said, “The FIH is truly appreciative of the contributions by the late Sultan Azlan Shah and the introduction of this award is our way of recognizing his lengthy and valuable services in the sport which he was very passionate about.”
Asian Hockey Federation President HRH Prince Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah said, “The growth of hockey in Asia was fast-tracked under the leadership of the late HRH Sultan Azlan Shah. His vision of and commitment to in giving greater opportunities to hockey-playing nations were the primary objective in the creation of the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup. Today, this tournament is the most sought after international invitational event.”
Asian Hockey Federation CEO Dato’ Tayyab Ikram said, “It is great pleasure for me to see the HRH Sultan Azlan Shah Award come into being, a cause the Asian Hockey Federation has championed for some time. I am delighted to see HRH Sultan Azlan Shah, whose impact and importance as a leader and father to the sport in Asia and the Asian hockey family cannot be overestimated, honoured in this manner.”
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