Hockey

The Siwachs’ show at the Junior WC

Proud parents: Pritam Rani and Kuldeep at the India-Belgium clash on Wednesday.  

For former India captain and Dronacharya award winner Pritam Rani Siwach and her husband and former player Kuldeep Siwach, watching their son Yashdeep in India colours at the Junior World Cup at home has been a privilege but witnessing the Indian hockey team in action is a bigger attraction.

Grooming players

Pritam and Kuldeep have groomed several players, including three who were part of the Indian women’s squad which finished fourth at the Tokyo Olympics.

The two treat Yashdeep and his sister Kanika, who also plays as a midfielder at the sub-junior level, just like the others who are products of the Pritam Rani Hockey Academy at Sonepat.

“All of them are our kids and we don’t differentiate between them. Of course, as a parent, it’s a special joy to see your son playing for the country in a big event at home,” Pritam told The Hindu on Wednesday, watching the action at the Kalinga Stadium along with Kuldeep.

“As parents, we shower our love and affection on them. But as coaches we treat all the kids equally. It’s about the larger picture of going on to play for the country and making it proud,” said Kuldeep.

The team-first approach is ingrained in Yashdeep as well. “I speak to my parents regularly, but we don’t discuss games from an individual’s point of view. They always speak about how the team played and what we could have done,” said Yashdeep.

Disciplinarian

Pritam revealed that she never hesitated to be strict with her son when required. “Not only do I rebuke Yashdeep when there is a lapse, but I also hit him. We later make up when he says ‘Mummy, you hit me very hard,’” said Pritam.

During the matches of the academy, Yashdeep is on Pritam’s team while his sister plays with Kuldeep.

Did they ask Yashdeep, a defender, not to be nervous while playing in front of them? “That was not needed as he has done it many times with Kuldeep as coach,” said Pritam.


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Printable version | Jan 17, 2022 5:45:55 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/hockey/the-siwachs-show-at-the-junior-wc/article37795213.ece

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