Hockey India offers Oltmans four-year extension as head coach

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Hockey India offers Oltmans four-year extension as head coach

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SportsCafe Desk


India hockey high performance director and head coach Roelant Oltmans has been offered a four-year extension, but the Dutchman is to continue until the Tokyo Olympics in 2020 as chief coach and not in a dual role. Oltmans’ current contract expires in January next year.

“Let’s first wait until the signatures are there. They’re not there yet. We are discussing and in case I remain I will only be chief coach,” he told The Hindu newspaper.

Meanwhile, HI president Narinder Batra said the process to appoint a new high performance director is underway.

The senior men’s team has fared well over the past 12 months under Oltmans, winning bronze at the World League final in December and silver at the Champions Trophy in June.

India’s eighth place finish at the Rio Olympics after losing to Belgium in the quarterfinals had led to speculation that the 62-year-old may not get an extension.

 “We have been discussing that. There’s been a lot of improvement but the absolute performance is what matters,” the Dutchman said.

“I told the boys after the Olympics: ‘It’s good that we’re getting a lot of compliments but it’s about winning medals in important tournaments. That has to become more consistent.’’

India is going to play the Asian Champions Trophy in Malaysia after some days under the leadership of PR Sreejesh. But the injury concerns have made SV Sunil and Manpreet Singh out from the team for the tour.

Oltmans said, “Sunil’s problem is a ligament in his wrist. He suffered this injury during the Olympics and it has come back again. Manpreet has a groin injury, which is also a recurring one. If you’re not careful with them they could become chronic.”

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