Datuk Dina Rizal is synonymous with grassroots sports in Malaysia and helped coin the now iconic ‘Malaysia Boleh’ chant.
Since his retirement as Milo’s brand manager in 2004, Dina has continued to give back to society via his SportsUnite Sports Club.
What is unique about SportsUnite’s sporting events is that each team must have athletes from different races or ethnic backgrounds.
Apart from promoting inclusiveness and unity, SportsUnite helps foster a healthy lifestyle.
“Sports can unite all races. I grew up playing sports with friends from all races,” said Dina, 73.
“Sadly, in recent times, we seem more divided than ever, with certain politicians using race and religion to grab power.
“That was why I started organising sports tournaments, to bring all the races in this beautiful country together.”
Dina said his golf tournament – ‘Gua Caya Sama Lu’ – has helped fund most of the club’s activities.
Each team consists of two members – two males, two females or a mixed partnership – and was first played in 2014 but was put on hold when Covid-19 hit the country.
The seventh edition of ‘Gua Caya Sama Lu’ is at Kelab Rahman Putra on July 13.
“The entry fees will help us to organise other tournaments. We have some corporate sponsors too, but the golf tournament is important,” said Dina.
The 11th Piala Datuk Wira Soh Chin Ann Under-12 Unity Football Carnival was held in Melaka and January, while the other activities lined up include the 7th Breast Cancer Survivors Bowling Carnival to be participated by 100 breast cancer survivors, support medical staff, and friends.
“A big thank you goes out to Chin Ann, the patron of Lagenda Football Club. The club provided us with match officials and other necessities during the tournament. That is a big help,” said Dina.
“We have had requests to expand the football tournament, but 32 teams is the maximum for now.
“Many parents have told me how much they and their children enjoy playing in it, as they mix with all the races.”
Dina said the Breast Cancer Welfare Association and Sunway Mega Lanes are joint organisers of the bowling tournament.
He said if SportsUnite can raise enough funds, it would support the MBA Badminton Academy with a Junior Unity Doubles Badminton Carnival.
“We also plan to have a Junior Unity Kabaddi Carnival,” said Dina.
He also revealed plans to have three-on-three basketball tournaments in Malay villages and sepak takraw tournaments in Chinese New Villages.