HOCKEY clubs are crying foul at Stadium Malaysia Corporation for raising the price of rental at both the National Hockey Stadium pitches in Bukit Jalil as well at the Tun Razak Stadium.
And with the Junior Hockey League (JHL) starting on Jan 15, the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) is trying its best to negotiate a lower price.
Last year, it was RM130 for the MHC to rent for one match (two hours) at Bukit Jalil, but the new season will see teams paying RM250 to RM300.
And at Tun Razak, which is also under the Stadium Corporation, the rates for night remains at RM120, but the minutes have been reduced from 90 to 60 minutes.
However, for daytime it has now doubled to RM80 per hour, from RM40.
All these rates are exclusive of Goods and Services Tax (GST).
An MHC official said he was shocked last year itself, as when he booked for the JHL it was RM130, but bookings for the Malaysia Hockey League went up to RM300.
Clubs have been venting their frustration on social media, and MHC CEO K. Logan Raj said they are in discussion with the Stadium Corporation to get a better deal for their affiliates.
"After we received the revised rates, we met Stadium Corporation members and had a few discussions. The Corporation said the increase is because of certain factors, but they are looking at giving MHC and our affiliates a better rate," said Logan.
One club official, who declined to be named, said: "We hope the Stadium Corporation would have a re-look at the high rental and lower time allotted at their hockey stadiums.
"This is because teams use their facilities to compete in the JHL, MHL, social matches, university games and certain schools and clubs training projects.
"From our (clubs) point of view, the high rates and lesser playing time would make teams train less for tournaments and this would bring down the quality of players over the long run," said the official.
For private clubs at Bukit Jalil its now RM300 for two hours while schools are charged RM150 for two hours. Last year it was half the rate.
Comparatively, at the Kuala Lumpur Hockey Stadium the rates are much lower. Its RM40 per-hour for bookings from 8am to 4pm, and RM50 per-hour from 4pm to 7pm. At night under the floodlights, its only RM90 per hour.