After a disappointing World Cup marketing campaign, the Indian staff’s head coach, Graham Reid tendered his resignation together with analytical coach Greg Clark and scientific advisor Mitchell David Pemberton.
Below Reid, India loved a profitable Tokyo Olympics marketing campaign the place they gained a medal after 41 lengthy years. He additionally oversaw India’s third-placed end within the Professional League final season together with the silver medal on the Commonwealth Video games 2022.
The 12 months 2023 is sort of essential for India, with the Asian Video games, being a qualification occasion for the 2024 Paris Olympics. Failure to win gold on the Asiad will lead to India having to play a difficult qualification event later this 12 months or in early 2024 to make it to Paris.
Up to now, many coaches, international and home, have discovered Indian hockey to be a troublesome terrain to navigate. Expectations are at all times big; whereas the staff’s performances are sometimes hampered by inconsistency.
So, what is going to the brand new coach face and what must be the objectives for the staff? We checklist it out:
FIH Professional League:
This season, India are positioned second within the desk after having performed 4 matches within the high worldwide league, with 12 extra to go. They’ll restart their marketing campaign in March so it will almost definitely be the brand new coach’s first worldwide task.
Will probably be robust for the coach and the gamers to hit the bottom working as quickly as they begin enjoying, however Professional League matches current an ideal alternative for gamers to implement their new coach’s concepts and elegance. Though India completed a reputable third final time round, there are not any actual penalties or advantages with regard to the place they end on the desk. Effectively, aside from ending final as a result of that may imply getting relegated to the Nations Cup.
Asian Video games:
The most important check for the brand new coach this 12 months would be the Asian Video games in Hangzhou, China. India will stay favourites for the gold regardless of what occurred at this World Cup. There shall be robust competitors from the likes of Malaysia and South Korea who impressed on the World Cup. In reality, South Korea had been the one Asian nation to qualify for the quarterfinals of the World Cup.
Final time in 2018, India began off with a bang however misplaced within the semifinal in opposition to Malaysia. They got here again residence with a bronze after beating Pakistan within the third-place playoff. Regardless of the medal, the marketing campaign was thought of a failure. The brand new coach shall be conscious that something apart from a gold will carry added scrutiny and strain.
Will probably be fascinating to see if the brand new coach will choose for a whole overhaul of the squad, though it’s kind of untimely. The present set of gamers endured a tricky World Cup, however there’s sufficient expertise in place. The likes of Hardik Singh, Abhishek, Sukhjeet Singh, Vivek Sagar Prasad and Shamsher Singh must be a part of the long-term plan of the boys’s staff.
As well as, PR Sreejesh mentioned he is not ready to give up his boots just yet whereas former captain Manpreet Singh may also must be within the combine.
One space the brand new coach ought to commit time and power to is the event of junior staff gamers. It will not be their main job, however India want an everyday provide of junior gamers into the senior staff. At this World Cup, India had just one participant from the 2021 Junior World Cup squad – Vivek Sagar Prasad – who had already made his senior staff debut earlier than enjoying the Junior World Cup.
One other dilemma for the brand new coach can be the appointment of a captain; or relatively, whether or not Harmanpreet Singh will get to maintain his armband after a tricky event. Captaincy will not be vital in hockey, however Harmanpreet needed to face robust questions concerning the staff’s efficiency in addition to his lack of kind on the World Cup. The strain was very a lot seen on his face, and performances.
Excessive efficiency teaching
India would not have a powerful home construction. The method from the federation may be very top-down in nature, the place the gamers chosen in nationwide camps (senior and junior) are supplied with the very best of amenities and coaching strategies to enhance their requirements.
It is totally different in Europe, the place gamers function in robust home leagues. The brand new coach must develop methods and strategies to boost the efficiency and health ranges of home gamers – with out high quality sport time. It is precisely why earlier coaches, together with Reid, spent loads of time getting ready their prices in nationwide camps. It’s of the utmost significance that new gamers coming in are rapidly upgraded to excessive worldwide requirements.
Earlier than Reid put in his papers, he went public with the necessity to have a psychological conditioning coach for the senior staff. In Reid’s case, it was concerning the gamers’ failure to take care of the strain of enjoying a house World Cup. The brand new coach will little doubt be requested about his opinion on the matter.
There are advantages of getting a long-term sports activities psychologist with the staff. It may very well be associated to coping with strain or about sport administration and the way to keep within the second. Whether or not the coach and the gamers shall be open to having one is one other essential query. Reid thought he had in him to handle the gamers mentally, nevertheless it did not work. Ultimately, it resulted in Reid’s tenure coming to a disappointing conclusion.