Ola Bola’s makers should be ashamed of lying to Malaysians

Posted: March 6, 2016 in Anak Bangsa Malaysia, Football, Malaysia, North Borneo, Ola Bola, Sabah, Sabah Foootball
Tags: , ,

I cannot resist the temptation to reproduce this letter below, because, this is exactly how most of my Sabahan friends feel about this much hyped up movie “OLA BOLA”.

Here goes….

I was at the Stadium Merdeka on 6, 1980 when James Wong scored the winning goal against South Korea. With this victory, we qualified for the Moscow Olympics.

I therefore made it a point to go and see the hyped movie Ola Bola, a movie based on the true story of the victorious team and to relive that magical moment when two fellow Sabahans created and scored the winning goal for Malaysia.

I came out of the cinema hall feeling rather despondent. This was a true story that was altered and twisted for reasons best known to Director Chiu Keng Guan and his scriptwriters.

Ever since I was young, it was always drummed into my head that we must render onto Caesar what is Caesar’s.

So when Chiu Keng Guan decided to credit the winning goal to Khalid Ali in his movie and not to James Wong, that was a total disappointment.

That was a white lie and went against what I was thought to believe about giving credit when it is due.

Chiu has “dismissed complaints about factual inaccuracies by pointing out that the film is just inspired by true events”, what rubbish!

Did I read that correctly? True events? Was it not James Wong that scored the winning goal?

Was the score not 2-1 in favour of Malaysia and not 3-2? If the story line is based on “true events” how could anyone ignore the truth?

To give credit where it is due, the film was well executed. The cinematography was great. The story-line of comradeship and determination was excellent and this is 1Malaysia at its best.

There were Chinese, Indians, Sikh, Malays, West Malaysians and East Malaysians all coming together as one to bring glory to the Nation.

The movie showed us what true grit and determination can achieve.

But to change what was the one magical moment that we are all know belongs to James Wong is totally unacceptable by any standard.

Either the film’s Director deliberately changed the facts upon instruction to fit a political master race agenda in order to enjoy Finas funding or he and his scriptwriter did not do enough research on that game and the history behind it. Why they did that is best left to the imagination.

There is a lot of negative perception about this including if there was a hidden agenda behind changing the actual goal scorer from James to Ali. This is a question best left to Director Chiu and his scriptwriter to answer.

For me personally and the thousands of football fans who were there in  Stadium Merdeka you will NEVER, ever convince us that it was not James Wong who scored the winning goal for Malaysia.

You can try taking glory away from James but you will never take away what is etched in my memory – that one magical moment in time when two SABAHANS combined together to produce what was possibly the highest achievement of the Malaysian football team of the 80s.

Thank you Hassan! Thank you James! Shame on you Chiu and Astro!

Note : This letter came out in the Daily Express Sabah

  1. Ricardo says:

    The movie is an insult to James Wong and Hassan Sani. What is the point of making a movie about an historical event and then changing the key facts. Typical west Malaysians playing fast and loose with the truth.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Datuk Onn ariffin says:

    I knew it. Something must have gone amiss in obola.That is why I m not much of a football fan, for fear that I might meet certain death on the TV couch. I’d rather wait for the result. Doing film about history is not an easy stake. It is about facts. It is not just about entertaining or being simplified in how you perceive things.. Mr selvaraj has hit the nail on its head when he commented the role of Sabahan footballers in the international game and am pretty sure Sabahan has the right to claim what is legitimately right when the limelight being stolen from them, even if it is meant to entertain. It is not just fame It is a matter of doing it right. Definitely I dont feel anywhere entertain by this. What a pity, the film has missed it’s golden opportunity to share the glory and fortune in the greater intergeration of the country in sports by sidelining true events on the score, in following Mr Salvaraj comments.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Rambling Mind says:

    I’m Sabahan. And I’m saying this: are you out of your f**king mind?

    How has the movie in any way diminished the achievements of the team from that Golden Age? Just because the scorer of the goal was not from Sabah?

    You, sir, are exactly what is wrong with this country today. You prefer to focus on one insignificant moment and gloss over that fact the the ENTIRE COUNTRY was rooting for that 1 team that was represented by all races. And they all worked for one goal.

    You prefer to think of it as a Sabah losing out instead of Malaysia scoring. Half full half empty, I say.

    Oh, and if you don’t know what “INSPIRED by true events means” perhaps best to look it up next time before going on a massive rant that gets you publicity for being a f**king idiot.

    Thank God, not all Sabahans think like you.


  4. Ahmad says:

    “Either the film’s Director deliberately changed the facts upon instruction to fit a political master race agenda in order to enjoy Finas funding or he and his scriptwriter did not do enough research on that game and the history behind it. Why they did that is best left to the imagination.”

    This very statement is what persuaded me to comment on what you wrote.

    Has Malaysians gone mad that anything that is not to their taste is a product of some twisted political agenda? Come on lah Mr Blogger, Chiu stated clearly that the movie was inspired, not based on the true event.

    I watched Ola Bola, and not once did I feel that there is a hidden agenda beside wanting the audience to enjoy a good movie. I am proud of what Malaysia achieved, and although the actual history is different, it made me google up the actual event. I am sure many other Malaysians did what I did.

    James Wong did the country proud. It made me proud that he is a MALAYSIAN, regardless whether he is Sabahan, or Chinese, or Not Malay or any other label that you would like to call him.


  5. Sham Fatwa Pujangga says:

    I agree 100% with this writing.


  6. FC says:

    People always thought that Sabah’s biggest export was timber, it was actually narrow mindedness and pettiness.

    Liked by 1 person

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