The Hague: Australia’s famed coach Ric Charlesworth feels Indian hockey is making progress, but it would be a while before the country can return to the podium. “I think India is making progress. From what I see, there is some purpose in their game,” says Charlesworth, coach of the Australian team that is seeking to win their second successive men’s World Cup title.
“India needs to work on the structure. The country has one billion people. If they can develop hockey talent the world should look out,” said Charlesworth. Charlesworth feels India should focus on improving their world ranking, as that would inspire confidence in the players and the fans.
“India should look to climb up the rankings, and they can do so if they stick to a plan,” said Charlesworth, who had a coaching stint in India, but left disgruntled after a rift with the administrators.
But he returned last year as coach of Mumbai Magicians franchise team in the Hockey India League.
“Compared to the time when I was in India, the administration there is well-settled,” said Charlesworth, emphasising the need for a stable administration for the sport’s revival.
“Hockey India League has given the Indian players an opportunity to play alongside the best talent in the world. This is bound to make them better players,” says Charlesworth.
Charlesworth already has the distinction of having won the men’s World Cup both as captain (in 1986) and as coach (in 2010).