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India sack hockey team coach over dismal showing


Photo: AFP

Hockey India has sacked men’s national team coach Harendra Singh after a dismal showing at the Asian Games and their quarter-final exit as hosts in last month’s World Cup.

The much-fancied Indian senior team had to settle for a bronze at the Asiad in Jakarta last year and were dumped out by the Netherlands in the World Cup in December.

Singh blamed poor umpiring in the last-eight 2-1 loss and vented his anger in a post-match news conference but his actions reportedly did not go down well with Indian officials.

Hockey India said on Wednesday that the veteran player would now coach the junior team.

It said that the decision was aimed at building a “strong base” ahead of the 2021 Junior World Cup and the 2020 and 2024 Olympics.

Singh, earlier the women’s team coach, became the men’s coach in May to replace Dutchman Sjoerd Marijne after India failed to win a medal at the 2018 Commonwealth Games.