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Charlesworth's resignation accepted

July 18, 2008 17:41 IST

Ric Charlesworth's controversial stint with Indian hockey finally came to an end on Friday with the Sports Authority of India accepting his resignation. The development also put an end to speculation about the Australian legend's future as Technical Advisor to Indian hockey.

The decision to accept Charlesworth's resignation was taken after a meeting with top International Hockey Federation officials and key members of the Indian Olympic Association's ad-hoc committee, which is currently running the game in the country.

"He (Charlesworth) has done his job in a fantastic way for the future of Indian hockey. But now his role is over," FIH president Els van Breda Vriesman told a press conference in Hyderabad.

Charlesworth was sent by the FIH as part of a project to revive Indian hockey but the Australian left the country in a huff after expressing dissatisfaction with the working conditions. But Vriesman said she was not disappointed about the turn of events involving Charlesworth.

"He has completed his role much to FIH's satisfaction. FIH has no plans to appoint any other advisor or consultant coach unless a request is made by the governing body of the game in India," she said.

Charlesworth, who tendered his resignation on June 25, complaining about "inadequate working and living conditions" and non-payment of outstanding bills, had sent an e-mail to the media that he would return to India on July 26.

Vriesman said it had provisionally recognised the Indian Hockey Confederation as the sole governing body for the sport in India and added that there was a proposal to rename it 'Hockey India' after the IHF was disbanded in the wake of a bribery scandal.

"The IOA has advised us that it has provisionally recognised the Indian Hockey Confederation as the sole governing body for hockey for men and women in India.

"There will be one association now. Official confirmation to this extent is expected at the IOA General Assembly, to be held in November in New Delhi. In pursuant of this, it is proposed to rename the body as Hockey India."

The hockey project under the IOA solidarity scheme will, however, be continued. FIH will continue to develop hockey in India through the new body.

"I am very happy with the new arrangement and the meetings were held in good spirit and there have been positive contribution from all the partners," Vriesman said.

On K P S Gill's participation in the AHF meeting, IOA president and chairman of the ad-hoc committee, Suresh Kalmadi, made it clear that Gill would not play any role in the sport in the country but is free to give suggestions on Asian hockey.

"AHF is an elected body. He has no role in India but he will be suggesting to them on Asian hockey. So he will be continuing there till 2010 when his term ends," Kalmadi said.

He said the IOA ad-hoc committee will meet the captains and Olympians after the Junior Asia Cup hockey final between India and Korea later on Friday.

They will have another meeting in New Delhi and a senior coach will be appointed soon.

Kalmadi said all the issues pertaining to payment of dues of Charlesworth will be resolved soon.

Replying to another query, he said a decision on appointing a coach for the Indian men's hockey team will be taken "at the earliest".

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