Indian hockey team : Asia Cup 2017, under Sjoerd Marijne

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Indian hockey coach Sjoerd Marijne, who replaced Roelant Oltmans in September says winning Asia Cup should not make players complacent.

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Apart from winning the Asia Cup, India got the 98’ Asian Games gold, 2001 Junior World Cup crown, the 2011 Asian Champions trophy, the 2014 Asian Games gold, the 2016 Champions Trophy silver, the 2015 Hockey World League (HWL) bronze, the 2016 Asian Champions Trophy followed by the 2016 Junior World Cup trophy. But the cycle continues.

There were different factors at play always. Coaches sacked even after winning, teams hurriedly dismantled, key players retired or discarded as ‘old war horses’. Even as 37-year-old Aussie Jamie Dwyer played at Rio like a gladiator. Just inertia and resistance to a higher aim.

Take the last two times we won the Asia Cup – in 2003 under Rajinder Singh Senior and Joaquim Carvalho in 2007.

The Asia Cup hockey title under his belt, India’s chief coach Sjoerd Marijne feels consistency is something which his wards need to work on to bridge the gap with the top teams.

“We still lack consistency which was evident in the final against Malaysia. We should have scored more goals in the final but our levels dropped too low in the final quarter and it allowed Malaysia to make a comeback.

Sjoerd Marijne, who took over the team just last month after the sudden ouster of the legendary Roelant Oltmans. It feels that Indians can be a lethal force against any opposition. If they can carry on with the same style of play in the upcoming tournaments.

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