Football: Hard work pays off for Dato Siva

Quiet. Unassuming yet effective at home s task.

A smile ever present on his face as he dresses up unconventionally for functions, often seen in his batik instead of the traditional coat and tie.

Meet the 64 year old Dato Sive Sundram, the most powerful and highest ranking Indian in Malaysian football.

March 13 will be the crowning glory for the retired customs officer as he steps up to be officially installed as the Deputy President of the Football Association of Malaysia.

A rare feat indeed but Dato Siva is indeed an individual of rare feats.

He was the first Indian to achieve the feat of becoming a Vice President of FAM.

He went up the ladder the traditional way – sheer hard work and right from the bottom.

Starting off a club with the late Arumugam, Starbrite FC carved a name for Dato Siva.

For Statbrite was not a mere football club but provided opportunities for the Indian youth to excel in football and got them off the streets.

If the Malays were proud of the Sultan Sulaiman Club, the Indians too had their version of an institution doing community service.

And Dato Siva was key to that.

He eventually served Selangor FA as a treasurer and as fate had it, serving as Hon. Secretary was one Dato Hamidin Mohd Amin.

The two build a bridge of friendship that has stood firm fir well over 25 years, both at state and national levels.

One could often see both their cars parked as Wisma FAS in the wee hours of the morning, planning and charting the success path of the Red Giants.

Since Dato Siva was still serving the Royal Customs, the duo used to be in office around 7am.

Dato Suva was an expert in gate collections, deriving methods on how to increase revenue without hitting deep into the pockets of the fans.

One unique factor was the ability Ford Selangor FA to collect RM4.5 million from the gates alone the year they won the treble when their budget fir the team was RM5 million, and Dato Siva was often then Assistant Team Manager.

His Royal Highness Al Mahrum Sultan Abu Bakar gave the responsibility to Dato Suva to manage the gates and Dato Suva duly repaid the trust by collecting close to EM17 million over a four year period in the mid 20’s for FAM.

While many may speculate that Dato Suva owed it to Hamidin, it is a case of a perfect combination of two “ brothers”.

They might be of a different race and religion but the respect and love they shower in each other is a perfect example of living and working in harmony in this multi racial country.

A four year term awaits Dato Siva who needs to show the same dedication and sacrifice when he started Starbrite.

A father of three boy’s, Dato Sive must surely value the sacrifices of his wife Datin Thulasi who single hand idly as a housewife showery

Care, love and dedication to the kids as Dato Sive was often on the road for away matches in his administrative role.

If there is one thing that Dato Suva is good at, then it has to be spitting talent, for many a player of Indian origin dinned the jersey of Selangor and Harimau Musa over the last 3 decades that’s to the roving eyes of Dato Suva.

And once the ceremonial installation ends onMarch 13, expect Dato Siva to hit the road, riding shotgun with his brother in arms Hamidin.