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2015 HWL R4 Raipur
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SWOT Analysis of India-Germany match (11/28/2015)
--Shane Sadanand
SWOT Analysis of India - Germany match.

In Art of War Sun Tzu defines the mind of a warrior. " Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win".

India-Argentina match showed the harsh reality: Argentina is very close to Rio and India will have to travel a lot to reach there.

GERMANY
Strength : This is better team than the one that lost to Netherlands in European Championship final 6-1.They have now an organised forward line with a steady mid layer and defence. Jacobi has corrected his mistakes and improved his reflexes. The scoreline says it all. During the last two years Germany scored 159 goals and conceded only 90. With or without Moritz Furste they are a formidable force.

Weakness: Valentin Altenburg is not a hockey strategist compared to Markus Weise. He is not a hard taskmaster as we saw him in HIL. He is a stop gap arrangement till Olympics. An experienced coach can win over him in mental games. Their PC execution is a problem. Set pattern predictable. Indians know Nicolas Jacobi and vice versa. Perhaps Jacobi will take advantage.

Opportunity: Germany may have observed India yesterday, they can now easily formulate their strategy. Without Moritz Furste, they can play an open game. They may pull out some indirect tricks in PC conversions. They will go for an all out attack to take a huge lead in first half itself. Argentina type defence-not allowing any space for India in their 23 yards will be the key.

Threats: Present Indian team can rise from defeat. They had a very bad day in office in the last game. If Moritz Furste is not available, their best man who knows the Indian players very well, could make problems. Complacency factor is over for India. Slow starting is also over. Different India can be seen today.

INDIA
Strength: Sreejesh is in brilliant form. If Birendra comes to middle layer, it will give thrust to Indian attacks. PCs are our best weapon, Reghunath should take the first one as he is in slightly better form. Home advantage will there.

Weakness: Pressure factor killed India yesterday. Test series gave a false security to players. Like in test series, they had a casual approach to fouls yesterday. Both Argentina and India got two loose balls. They converted it, we didn't. That made the difference. We could not create any constructive move from middle. Indians are yet to pull out a surprise weapon. Presence of strategy coach was not visible in second half. Left wing attack was invisible against Argentina.

Opportunity: Today is a new beginning. Complacency and pressure factors gone. Against Germany, playing with their own methods will not give any advantage. You cannot beat a specialist by playing his own game. Change the ball game and ground rules. Today Australian style would be the best choice. Creative player like Devinder should give more role in left wing attack. Today should be a forward line's day out.

Threats: Another loss will damphen the morale of players and public. Standard of the game should be elevated to a level to substantiate the new ranking though Raipur is ideal for experimentation.

Sun Tzu also told "In the midst of chaos, there is also opportunity ".

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