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Players miss terry Walsh

Terry Walsh’s sudden exit as Indian hockey team’s chief coach seems to have left a long lasting effect on the players, who said they were missing the Australian’s services ahead of the FIH Champions Trophy. The players were univocal in their praise for Walsh but said they won’t let his departure affect their performance in the December 6-14 event to be held in Bhubaneswar.

“Walsh was a very good coach. The recent results have proved that. The combination of Walsh and Roelant Oltmans (High Performance Director) was good too. Oltmans is still with us and we are training accordingly to the plans drawn by them (Walsh and Oltmans) since last year. However, I don’t know much about what the authorities are planning,” striker Ramandeep Singh said.

Walsh, who replaced fellow Australian Michael Nobbs in October last year, had expressed his desire to return to India after he left the country unceremoniously following breakdown in his contractual talks with SAI and Hockey India. Hockey India, however, has shut the door on him and accused the Australian of financial irregularities during his stint with USA Hockey. HI president Narinder Batra has made it clear the federation no longer require his services.

The Indian players are slowly getting to terms with the reality that Walsh, who recently guided them to the Asian Games gold after 16 years and a rare 3-1 series win over world champions Australia in their own backyard, is no longer with the team. “There is no doubt he (Walsh) was a very good coach. All I know is his one year contract was over and he left. SAI and Hockey India would know more on the subject,” India captain Sardar Singh said.
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