Apart from preparing the Indian hockey team for some important events this year, chief coach Terry Walsh is excited about a developmental plan to establish a uniform style of play at every level.
Talking to reporters after a practice session at the National Stadium here on Thursday, Walsh sounded optimistic about the plan which will cover under-14, under-17 and under-21 players.
“We are starting to get some plans which are going to be in place with reference to our development.
“And that is huge. I am delighted that the academy type of process is going to be of high quality.
“We are going to link everything under this plan,” said Walsh.
“We are looking at developing in a style of game which replicates what we are doing at the top level.”
Walsh said it would take some time before such a plan yielded results.
“By end of the third quarter of the year we will see the first part of it take place. It will take 12-18 months to really see it work,” he said.
Key players recovering
Walsh said some key players — such as Mandeep Singh, Gurwinder Singh Chandi, S.V. Sunil, Harbir Singh and Danish Mujtaba — were on the path to recovery and should be fit in the next few weeks.
The chief coach said the Indian team might play a few games against the Netherlands and Belgium, apart from local sides in Europe in the run-up to the World Cup in May.