Athletics: Hamkah, Hosni leave SPH to coach full-time

Former national sprinters (from left) Hamkah Afik and Muhamad Hosni will be turning their attention to schools in the new year.
Former national sprinters (from left) Hamkah Afik and Muhamad Hosni will be turning their attention to schools in the new year.PHOTOS: ST FILE, BH FILE

Former national track and field coaches Muhamad Hosni and Hamkah Afik will turn their attention to schools in the new year.

The former national sprinters, who are colleagues at Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), will be leaving their day jobs to spend more time mentoring on the running track. Hosni is an archivist at the SPH library while Hamkah is a senior librarian. Both are 44 and tomorrow is their last day of service.

Hamkah, the 1993 SEA Games 200m silver medallist, used to train the national men's 4x100m relay squad. He will now coach Opera Estate Primary, St Patrick's School, Tampines Junior College and Temasek Polytechnic.

He joined SPH in 1999 and has been juggling his coaching commitments with his day job. Being a full-time coach will free him to spend more time nurturing the next generation of athletes, he said.

The father of two teenagers aged 15 and 11 added: "Now that my kids have grown up, it's time to move on. I've always loved (coaching athletes) and now I'll have more time bringing the best out of them.

"Nowadays, the motivation for youths to excel in sport is lacking. I would like to motivate student-athletes to reach their fullest potential."

Hosni will also devote his time to teams at NUS High School of Mathematics and Science, St Andrew's Junior College and Ngee Ann Polytechnic. He is also coaching intellectually-disabled long jumper Suhairi Suhani, who competed in September's Paralympics.

He joined SPH in 1997, but left in 2009 to become the national sprints and relay coach, before rejoining in 2011. His latest move will allow him to spend more time with his four children, aged from eight to 18.

Said Hosni, who has been a coach with the Singapore Disability Sports Council for four years: "I hope to spur the growth in athletics, including in the intellectually-disabled area too."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 30, 2016, with the headline 'Hamkah, Hosni leave SPH to coach full-time'. Print Edition | Subscribe