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After V. Sundramoorthy's appointment as Singapore caretaker coach, Goal.com Singapore's Khalis Rifhan ponders whether the most successful local coach will have a shot at the job.

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By Khalis Rifhan
khalis.rifhan@goal.com
@KhalisRifhan

It came as no surprise when the Football Association of Singapore (FAS) announced the appointment of LionsXII coach V. Sundramoorthy as the Singapore caretaker coach for the upcoming 2015 AFC Asian Cup qualifier against Jordan. 

With the game to be played on February 6 at the King Abdullah Stadium in Amman, Sundram will have less than two weeks to prepare his side for the daunting task of travelling to the Middle East.

Many names were thrown up as potential candidates for this role, including former national skipper Aide Iskandar, former Geylang International coach Mike Wong and the S.League's most successful coach, Richard Bok. 

Is the former Singapore striker the right man for the job, or will it be a wrong decision from the FAS?

Only time can answer this question, but should the ‘Dazzler’ produce results in his first outing with Singapore, will the association be brave enough to appoint a local coach as the permanent coach for the Lions? 

However, with Sundram occupied with his LionsXII coaching duties with and Aide recently appointed as Courts Young Lions head coach the only viable option should the FAS opt for a local coach is none other than Bok.

The 43-year-old did not win four league titles by accident, nor has he received his AFC Professional Coaching Diploma as a fluke. 

But even if FAS decides to go with another foreign coach, Bok can certainly still be part of the coaching set-up by assisting whoever is appointed to the hot seat.

The former Singapore Armed Forces FC (SAFFC, now known as Warriors FC) coach's playing career was cut short due to health issues, but that was a blessing in disguise for the former Warriors player. 

He had the opportunity to assist and learn from coaches such as former Singapore coach Vincent Subramaniam, Croatian Mladen Pralija, current T-Team coach Peter Butler and Singapore’s favorite footballing son, Fandi Ahmad.

Bok also took notes for former Singapore Under-18 and Young Lions coach Kim Poulsen when the Dane was SAFFC coach in 2005, while he also had the chance to sit on the same bench as former Australia national coach, Welshman Jimmy Shoulder.

With such valuable learning experiences presented on a platter to him by his former club, where he spent 16 years as a player and then coach, Bok certainly had no need to travel far to gain valuable knowledge.

But there is one question left unanswered: did Bok submit his application to succeed Raddy Avramovic, or will FAS even consider the three-time S.League Coach of the Year when the time comes to make a decision?

Or will Richard Bok be a forgotten man in this football-mad nation?

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