Harendra Singh appointed Men's head coach as Sjoerd Marijne returns to manage women’s team

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Harendra Singh appointed Men's head coach as Sjoerd Marijne returns to manage women’s team

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SportsCafe Desk

05/01/2018

Sjoerd Marijne has been re-designated as the Indian women's coach while Harendra Singh has gone the other way and will coach the Men’s team. The move comes as a reaction to India’s sub par performance in the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games where both sides failed to secure a single medal.

Marijne had been given the role of the men's team in November last year following the sacking of Roelant Oltmans. However, with indifferent performances in the Sultan Azlan Shah and the Commonwealth Games, Hockey India (HI) has decided that they want another change. Hockey India has placed their faith in the Women's hockey coach Harendra Singh, who will replace the Dutchman as the head coach of the Men’s team.

"Harendra Singh brings with himself a wealth of experience and has previously managed a lot of the men's team players during his stints in the Hockey India League and with the junior teams," Mohd Mushtaque Ahmed, Hockey India Secretary General, said, reported TOI.

"Marijne's first stint with the women's team was a very successful one and we are sure he will continue to do well with this team as he has done in the past."

Harendra is not new to the role as he was the head coach for the Men’s side from 2009 to 2011. Following that he was handed the responsibility of the youth team and he did not disappoint their either, managing to guide the side to a World Cup title in 2016. Following a review of Team India’s performance at the CWG, where the women's team ended up in a respectable fourth place, HI decided to reward the Indian coach for his services with a chance to lead the men’s side. 

"It is an honour for me to now manage the Indian men's hockey team. It has been a very satisfying journey with the Indian women's hockey team and I would like to thank Hockey India for entrusting me with the new role as we prepare ourselves for a very important season ahead," Harendra revealed.

However, the men's team under the tutelage of Marijne ended in a disappointing fifth position in Gold Coast, returning without a medal for the first time since the 2006 CWG.

Marijne, too, had started his stint with the men’s side on a positive note as he was instrumental in helping the team win the Asia Cup which he followed up with a commendable bronze medal at the Hockey World League Final. However, he faced a lot of backlash from former players for his decision to take a relatively young side to the CWG instead of experienced stars like Sardar Singh, Birendra Lakra, and Ramandeep Singh. Marijne, however, said that he was happy to take up the role as the head of the women’s side again. 

"I'm excited to reunite with the women's team and will look to focus building on the good form exhibited by the team in last six months as we look forward to the World Cup 2018," said Marijne.

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