On Saturday (11 June), the 2023 Asian Cup qualifiers at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium between Malaysia and Bahrain met with a heavy downpour.
Despite Malaysia’s loss to Bahrain in the rain, the water-logged field soon took over the headlines and it had drawn plenty of criticisms from netizens.
On social media, netizens were quick to point out the poor field irrigation system of the National Stadium and lamented that the billions of ringgit used to upgrade the national stadium seemed wasted.
Meanwhile, some also called out to the former sports minister Khairy Jamaluddin as the upgrading works supposedly took place during his time in office.
Netizens claimed that it was corruption that lead to the poor work done at the stadium.
1.2 Billion tu… Bukan semua ke upgrading proses. Sikit masuk poket tu, sikit masuk poket ni. Yg tinggal tu je lah yg buat upgrade. Itu yg hasil dia tak memberangsangkan. 😊😌— Love_Yourself (@BeyondSeen) June 11, 2022
Apart from the criticisms, a video showing how workers were made to drain the field went viral on social media too.
The video showed the small group, armed with a hose, a dustpan and a broom, sweeping or suctioning away the excess water from the field. However, it seems that their effort had not helped in the situation.
Upgrading works at Bukit Jalil National Stadium
In May 2015, Malaysian Resources Corporation Berhad (MRCB) was awarded an RM1 billion contract for upgrading works. The goal was to turn it into a Sports City and host the 2017 SEA Games.
The project was reported to be modelled after the S$1.33 billion (≈RM3.6 billion then) Singapore Sports Hub and Dubai Sports City and complete with multi-purpose sports facilities, a shopping centre and restaurants.
Under this project, seats, the pitch, and corporate boxes have seen massive uplifts. Even the security features were improved.
However, from the looks of it, perhaps the sports complex is due for another refurbishment.