Harendra Singh is best coach for Indian team, says Dilip Tirkey

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Harendra Singh is best coach for Indian team, says Dilip Tirkey

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SportsCafe Desk


Amidst the buzz of Hockey India looking for a new foreign coach for the Indian team following Harendra Singh’s failure to get India the World Cup after a hiatus of 43 years, former Hockey player Dilip Tirkey has thrown his weight behind the coach. Tirkey has also called out for better drag-flickers.

After topping the group from which Belgium qualified and went on to eventually win the trophy, the hosts lost 2-1 to the Netherlands in the quarter-final. However, it was coach Harendra Singh’s reaction that had grabbed the headlines. He went on to blame poor umpiring for the result, asking FIH to address the issue seriously.

Not only did it not go down well with FIH CEO Thierry Wiel, who stated that he was not going to accept such behaviour and that a team should be graceful in defeat, but FIH President Narinder Batra also condemned Singh’s post-much outburst revealing he would be meeting with National Olympic Committee (NOC) president about it. However, Tirkey has stated that the 2016 Junior World Cup-winning coach should continue to be coaching the developing side.

“Harendra Singh is doing extremely well with team. We lost to Australia in the shoot-out (in the Champions Trophy). It was an impressive show (at the World Cup). All the foreign coaches have their contribution for the Indian team but as of now, Harendra Singh is the best coach for the Indian team. We need to work on this Indian team,” he said on the sidelines of the Beighton Cup hockey tournament, reported Scroll.

The former skipper also pointed out the diminishing potency in drag-flickers was one of the main reasons why India failed to make a mark in the World Cup. In Rupinder Pal Singh’s absence, India had to do with young Harmanpreet, Amit Rohidas, and Varun Kumar as their drag-flickers and their conversion rate was a dismal 30.7 per cent conversion. 

“We need to have world-class flickers. We presently have Harmanpreet, Amit Rohidas and Varun. We have to pay focus on them. We have to have a 60-70 per cent conversion rates in important matches,” Tirkey said.

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