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Cash incentive for hockey team
September 01, 2006 18:13 IST
The Premier Hockey League (PHL) has offered the Indian men's hockey team a lucrative cash reward of Rs. 1 crore for winning the forthcoming World Cup to be held in Germany, from September 6 to 17.
If the Indian team manage to finish runners-up in the prestigious tournament, they stand to receive Rs. 50 lakh while a third place will earn them Rs. 25 lakh.
"The PHL will also bear all expenses of the injured drag-flicker Sandeep Singh's rehabilitation and physiotherapy," R C Venkatesh, managing director of ESPN Star Sports which owns the PHL, said in New Delhi on Friday.
Denying that the announcement of cash reward is any publicity stunt, Indian Hockey Federation President K P S Gill said the Indian team is capable of springing any sort of surprise at the quadrennial tournament.
"The top six teams can beat each other. We have seen it in past international tournaments. So it is not a publicity stunt," he said.
Gill hoped that announcement of cash awards would motivate the Indian team to put up a good performance in Germany.
"PHL's announcement of the rewards will inspire the Indian team to give their best shot at the World Cup," he said.
Chief coach of Indian team, V Baskaran, welcomed PHL's contribution of providing facility for video analysis apart from announcing the cash rewards.
"It's a pleasant surprise [to know about PHL's announcement]. The provision of video analysis is also a good step forward.
"It is as much a training tool as it is a strategy tool. The video analyst is already working on specific requirements given by us. We are confident that the team performance will improve with this step," he said.
Captain of the Indian hockey team Dilip Tirkey also hailed PHL's decision to help the national side.
Asked whether the booty would be directly distributed to the players or through the IHF, Venkatesh said, "once they win a medal, the PHL will find a way to give the money to the players."