New Delhi: Hockey India (HI) is set to advertise inviting applications for the coaching job of its senior men’s team after the position was vacated by Roelant Oltmans’s ouster last week. And Junior World Cup winning-coach Harendra Singh could be the frontrunner if he opts to apply, hinted HI’s High-Performance Director (HPD), David John.Also Read - 'Hum Jeet Gaye': PIB Celebrates Indian Men Hockey Team's Bronze Victory With a 'Lagaan' Twist | Watch
John will lead the process of appointing the new coach and double up as the team’s coach in the interim, and he admitted that there isn’t much time left to fill the position with big tournaments lined up, starting this October with the Asia Cup. Also Read - Top Indian Women's Hockey Administrator Amrit Bose Dead
“Hockey India is likely to advertise for the position today (Monday) and then we will see at the applications. Most of the countries have hired coaches until the next Olympics, so I’m not sure who all will be available. So we’ll have to act fast,” the HPD said talking to Zee Media. Also Read - Former India Hockey Coach MK Kaushik Hospitalised After Testing Positive For Coronavirus
India may not have to look beyond Harendra, who is almost certain to throw his hat in the ring, especially after missing out on the coaching job of junior men’s team, which is now under their new coach Jude Felix.
“Harendra could be the best applicant for the job, but I will have to go through all the applications. He knows the boys well and has worked with them, it always helps,” John said.
Earlier in the year, Harendra missed applying for the post of junior India coach in the middle of a misunderstanding. His visit to Oman ended in news of him taking a coaching role with the Oman team; however, Harendra refuted those reports as mere rumours. By the time he cleared the air, the last date of filing applications was over.
Interestingly, it was outgoing coach Oltmans who sent an SMS to Harendra upon his return from Oman, congratulating him for his new job. But Harry laughed it off.
There were alleged differences between Oltmans and Harendra after the former almost hijacked India’s Junior World Cup campaign by deciding to join the team in the dugout throughout the tournament and then take credit for the achievement.