"There is lot of time to go for the World Cup and we are showing improvement. If we keep the pace we have a fair chance to win the World Cup. We are moving forward step by step" - Indian coach, Harendra Singh
Apr 6

Written by: Sundeep Misra
Monday, April 06, 2009 

Well, we have a history against the Polish. Rewind back to the 2000 Sydney Olympics and needing a win against Poland to advance to the Olympics semi-finals, we drew and crashed out of the competition. There was a certain Dhanraj Pillay in that unlucky team.
Yesterday, against the Egyptians, there was a Polish element in the form of their coach Jerzy Wybieralski. And in the Indian team, there was Dhanraj Pillay too as technical manager.

Jerzy Wybieralski, a Polish national, was ecstatic about the draw and felt that they deserved it.

“It is good result for Egypt and I think this is the first time in history we have managed it. There is no question that there was an element of luck in the draw but you need that at this level.

“It was an all round effort from the players and we made better use of the chances,” he said.

But 40 seconds before the hooter went off the Egyptians earned their second penalty corner of the match and Amr El Saied scored to take a precious point from the match.

India’s coach Harender Singh said his players performed well below par. It wasn't anything surprising. India have always been slow starters in tournaments. The problem area is the defence when they give away a soft goal in the last seconds. Now that would weigh heavy on the team.

“You do not expect to win matches with this kind of performance. I do not have any answers now but we will evaluate the performances later when we get back to the hotel.

“You would expect one or two players to be off-form but not the team to play at this level. It is a worry for me that we came off second best today and letting victory slip through over fingers with 40 seconds on the clock,” he said.

India play hosts Malaysia in their next match which should be a tight affair. Malaysia at home are a pretty decent side and are quick on the counter. It's the defence that would be under the spotlight for the Indians. Maybe, in the day off that the Indians have a little bit of introspection would held in forging a victory.


2 comment(s) so far...

Re: Entire team off-form: Harendra

We must keep faith in our players. We must win Azlan Shah Cup to ensure hockey survives in India.

By Sugnick Mitra on   Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Re: Entire team off-form: Harendra

hi... someone please tell sandeep singh to stop scooping every other ball from defense... it simply gives away position to the opponents... and the team should try to get their basics right.... hitting,stopping and slapshot skills of the indian team are pathetic... dont get me wrong here... i am a big fan of hockey and would love to see the indian team winning...

By thimmaiah on   Wednesday, April 08, 2009

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