Stadium Bukit Jalil – It Was Unbelievable
Players can look forward ro training on any of the three grass training fields adjacent to the main stadium. There is also an artificial turf training pitch to suit the varied tastes of coaches. The floodlights are pre-programmed and located to ensure thai every nook and cranny of the vast stadium is lit.
Malaysia national team coach B. Sathianathan, who has been involved in dozens of matches at the national stadium over the years, .says, ‘Thee Bukit Jalil National Stadium stands out for its excellent facilities and I don’t think I have seen any stadium in this part ol the world with such world-class facilities.”
The coach ought to know a thing or two about the deafening decibel levels which can be whipped up by vociferous fans inside the stadium. The atmosphere is magical and when the crowds cheer it can be very, very loud. The one match I remember the most is from the South-East Asian Games in 2001 when we played Vietnam in the semi-finals. The stadium was packed to the rafters and it was unbelievable. We won 2-0,” Sathianathan says.
The stadium’s central location and easy accessibility means it is also a preferred venue for concerts. Top pop stars from Hong Kong and Chinese Taipei have entertained hordes of fans at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium with the most recent big draw being Korean pop icon Rain.
Construction of the stadium began in 1994 and the structure was ready in time for the Commonwealth Games, held in Asia for the first time ever, four years later. Since the stadium is relatively young, not much renovation has been done to it except for routine maintenance.
“The Bukit Jalil National Stadium is the pride of Malaysia and symbolises our ‘Malaysia Boleh’ (Malaysia can!) spirit,” says Razy, summing up the importance of Malaysia’s main sports stadium.