Millennium Post

Aiming to win World Cup, says hockey coach

New delhi: Brimming with confidence in his pursuit of building Indian hockey men's team from the scratch, coach Sjoerd Marijne is aiming to win the World Cup and the Asian Games in this calendar year.
"Our main aim is to win the Asian Games and the World Cup. These are the biggest tournaments this year," said the 43-year-old Dutch at the press conference of Hockey India's unveiling of government of Odisha as the new sponsor, here on Thursday.
"Other tournaments such as Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in Malaysia and Commonwealth Games (Gold Coast, Australia) are the preparatory tournaments for building the squad that leads to the bigger tournaments."
After an unceremonious exit of Roelant Oltmans as the coach last year, the new-appointee Marijne has been constantly shuffling the squad since his appointment as the coach in September last year. His philosophy has seen a senior player such as Sardar Singh missing out in the last two tournaments. The former Indian women's team coach has defended his decision as he felt it would help the team in the long run.
Hockey India is notorious for its hire-and-fire attitude towards coaches. Marijne, who took up the coaching responsibility last September, said he is under no pressure of losing his job from the Federation. The only pressure that he feels is his zeal to win which he tries to instil in his boys too.
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