The women's team’s bronze medal-winning effort in the Junior World Cup couldn’t have come at a better time for Indian hockey as the feat has created a positive atmosphere in the country ahead of the senior men's side’s crucial Asia Cup campaign in Ipoh, Malaysia.
For Indian hockey’s High Performance Director Roelant Oltmans, who is also the interim chief coach of the men’s team, any success is inspiring.
“Of course, everyone in the country feels very happy when our teams are performing. We are one big hockey family in the country. All the players of the senior team were following the girls bronze medal play-off match against England and when they won we all started dancing and jumping in celebration,” Oltmans said.
“Their feat is inspiring because I feel every success inspires to achieve another success,” the Dutchman said during the felicitation of the junior women’s team.
“We are no doubt improving but there is still a huge gap to bridge to match the top teams at the senior level. Almost the same team played in the FIH World League Round 3 in Rotterdam where we faired poorly. It proves that there is a huge difference between junior and senior level.
“But the talent is there and the girls have proved that in the World Cup,” he said.