On Saturday, Abu Bakar Atan really caught me off guard when he announced his decision to withdraw from defending the Sportswriters Association of Malaysia (SAM) presidency and effectively handing me the top post on a silver platter.
Honestly, I was shocked! I never expected that, not even when one of my friends mentioned the possibility when he called me on my way to the EGM.
Bakar is a good friend of mine. I can still recall how he guide and advice me when I was just a rookie sports reporter in the early 1990's when he already established his reputation as one of the top football writers in the country.
In the one and only time SAM organized sports carnival, I believe in 1993, Bakar and I formed partnership in table tennis and we managed to qualify to the final before we lost to a pair from Nanyang Siang Pau.
I am thankful for his friendship.
When I decided to contest the SAM top post, it was never with the intention to undermine him. I am too small to be compared with him. Bakar has done and achieved much more, when I am practically still in the early part of the journey to the same desired destination.
Bakar, I appreciate what you have done to SAM, and to me, personally. From the bottom of my heart, I am humbly requesting you to continue giving your support and guidance for me - for the betterment of SAM.
Thank you Bakar!