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Task for Harendra is SubJunior Natonals, not camp (5/1/2014)
--K. Arumugam
First task for Harendra is Sub Junior Natonals, not a ritualistic camp

Indian administrators idea of kick starting their Junior World Cup campaign, an event which will take place at home three years from now, is good one, but the question is whether the sixty odd players who are in the camp that started last week, out of which hardly half of them will make to the core group after trials this week end, will be able to play next Jr. World Cup?

undefined Ordinarily the reply should be yes, after all it is first step towards forming crack out fit for the Junior World Cup, where we did not do well 4,5 months ago in Delhi.

The answer, regrettably is, a big No.

A glance at the age profile of the players, simply disappoint on this count. Most of the campers are almost in the early 20s, on look and on paper, obviously as they have been selected from the recently held Junior (under-21) and senior National Championships.

Three year hence, none of them will be under-21 to play the Junior World Cup unless and until the Indian jugaad works!

Therefore, the immediate concern of new coach Harendra, who may be well-versed with the age-old problems that plague India, should be able to get right players of right age.

If anything is to go by, the present lot at the camp under the banner of Junior World Cup, could make up content for the Development Team, which surprisingly India did not have one right now, covered under the carpet of Core Group.

Fortunately, Harendra should grab the opportunity that present itself before him, as he takes up the junior India assignment.

Unlike till recently, the hockey administration is putting in place different age group nationals, and it should come as a god send for Harendra.

Sub-Junior Nationals, for boys born on or after January 1, 1998 is going to be held in a fortnight’s time, Division A in Ranchi (Jharkhand) and Division B in Vadodara (Gujarat). This is where Performance of Director of Indian hockey -- who almost functions like yet another coach rather than putting in mechanism to scout talent without which no ‘performance’, not less ‘High Performance’ can be achieved.

Last year we were told Roelant Oltmans, HPD of HI, visited Manipur and other some destinations where domestic events like Nationals were held, and it was, against the backdrop, hoped he will help build a pyramid system of things that can systematically change things in long term perspective. What he has done in the vital area is not known, at least we in the media are unaware of his deliverances.

However, to bring matters to the point, it is important for Harendra to pick right kind of talent without wasting time.

For that he has pack his bag and move to Ranchi or Vadodara, rather than developing a Development Team, which doesn’t exist on paper, but it will be so if the present lot will be trained under Junior category.

Harendra, a veteran now in coaching, that too in Indian conditions, know well importance of right kind of talent.

Polishing them comes next, the first priority is to get them. Ranchi and Vadodara calling Harendra

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