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FIH 'not satisfied' with Indian hockey
November 20, 2007 16:23 IST
Even after a year of pursuasion, coaxing and cajoling, the International Hockey Federation is "not too satisfied" with the progress made by India under its pet project to promote the game in the country.
Bob Davidzon, Project Director of FIH-backed 'Promoting Indian Hockey,' feels the country needs to go miles in terms of infrastructure development, work at grass-roots level and administration before a turnaround in its fortunes.
However, Davidzon, who is closely associated with the project and passiontely monitoring its progress, is excited by the initiatives taken and hopes things will fall in place to guide Indian hockey back to glory.
In an exclusive interview with PTI, the Dutchman spoke on the progress made by the project.
How satisfied are you with the progress made by Indian hockey after a year's time?
Not too satisfied. Although the identified "areas of concern" and strategic directions have been recognised and confirmed, too little progress has been made in evaluating and implementing the various operational plans.
On the other hand, it is encouraging that more and more people involved recognise that outside assistance will help to develop the enormous potential.
Can you cite some examples where Indian hockey has proceeded on the road to development?
The recognition that a lot can be learned from other hockey federations, better adherence to deadlines set by the international federations/associations/committees they have to deal with, better forward planning of international programming, assistance of foreign coaching specialists (penalty corner, goalkeeping), initiatives at grassroots and school level, documentation on national team players, upcoming activities of the Expert Coach/Technical Advisor.
What are the areas that still need attention?
Umpiring, cohesion of national tournaments, functioning of the Federations, marketing of the game, activating people on committees and task forces.
In your report you had mentioned that Indian hockey officials lack in communicating with people (including media). Also the website, in the age of Information Technology, is almost defunct. Your views?
A: Communication is a two-way traffic in the first place, so trust must be built on two sides. A new website will officially be launched soon, and will start on manageable (pretty straightforward) level, with excellent links to international hockey. Once in operation and given adequate manpower, more features will be built in.