We want to revive hockey to its past glory: New IHF president

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Observing that hockey need not lag so much behind cricket in terms of popularity in the country, the new President of Indian Hockey Federation (IHF), V Dinesh Reddy said he would make every effort to bring back the past glory to the sport.
“We want to galvanise the hockey back to its past glory. Hockey is a national game. Of course cricket will continue to be number one, but it (hockey) should not be lagging behind as much as it is happening now. We want to revive it to its past glory,” Reddy said.
Asked to elaborate on his plans for reviving the popularity of hockey in the cricket-crazy country, Reddy said young talents should be spotted in schools itself and groomed for the big stage.
“We are looking to catch the young talent in the schools itself, give them coaching and make it attractive for the players to come and play for the national hockey.
“We are also looking forward to revive competitions like Premier League Hockey and World Series Hockey,” he added.
On the ongoing tussle between IHF and Hockey India (HI), Reddy, who is also the Andhra Pradesh Director General of Police (DGP), said he hoped to clear the matters during the Indian Olympic Association meeting to be held later this month.
“There are some issues, the matter is sub-judice. There are still some litigations between HI and IHF.
“This 25th there is a meeting of the Indian Olympic Association (IOA), which I will be attending along with two other members. We hope to sort out certain issues,” he said.
He replied in the affirmative when asked if he would be in favour of a patch-up between the HI and the IHF. “I think we should bring all of them on the same pedestal under the IHF umbrella,” Reddy said.

Australian Conrath will be Indian hockey team’s new trainer

Hockey India is all set to appoint Australian, Jason Conrath, as the new exercise physiologist of the senior men’s national team after another Aussie, David John, refused to resume duty owing to low salary. Conrath is Bachelor of Science in exercise and health and is currently studying masters in Gold Coast, Australia. John was with the team in the London Olympics in which India finished 12th after failing to win a single match. It has been learnt that John was hired on a monthly salary of USD 5500 by the Sports Authority of India last year on the recommendation of coach Michael Nobbs. There had been a significant change in the fitness level of players after his arrival. There were reports of his coming back after Nobbs joined the camp in Patiala last week.
However, Hockey India’s secretary general Narinder Batra has confirmed that John will not come back. “John has refused to come, so we have appointed another Australian Jason Conrath as the new trainer for the team,” he said.
“We have sent him the contract yesterday and after receiving that he will apply for the visa. I hope that he will join the team before 15th November.”
Batra also said that it was Nobbs who had suggested Conrath’s name to HI.
“It is only after coach’s recommendations any support staff is appointed. Nobbs has suggested Conrath’s name and we found him eligible for the job.”
India will take part in the Lanco International Super Series at Perth from November 22 to 25, which will also feature England, Australia and Pakistan.
The Lanco Series will be followed by the FIH Champions Trophy at the State Netball Hockey Centre in Melbourne from December 1 to 9. India are placed in Pool A alongside England, Germany and New Zealand, while hosts Australia, Belgium, Netherlands and Pakistan are in Pool B.