New Delhi: Unconcerned by the administrative
conflicts that plague Indian hockey, new coach Michael Nobbs
says he is completely focused on delivering results with a
team which is way behind in terms of fitness and preparation.
"There are some conflicts in Indian Hockey but as a coach
I am not bothered about them. My job is to get the best out of
my players and I am concentrating on that only," Nobbs said.
Nobbs, who has left for Australia to get his work permit,
said he has identified several aspects to work on and fitness
is his top priority.
"Fitness is a major worry. We are working on that. David
John (physical trainer) is a bio-mechanics expert and players
are following his fitness programme now. He is doing an
elaborate analysis and I am sure that he will make this team
fitter," said the Australian.
"Apart from fitness, change in style is also a major
factor. We have to adopt the European and Indian style.
European Hockey cannot be ignored as it is dominant in
international Hockey nowadays," he explained.
Nobbs sought patience and support to deliver results,
insisting he cannot perform miracles.
"Give me time, I can promise you results. There will be
no overnight miracles. I have been given a five-year contract
and I will deliver results. All I need is support and patience
from everyone," he said.
Citing the example of the Indian cricket team, Nobbs said
hockey can climb the popularity charts only if the national
team starts delivering good performances.
"Indians are crazy about cricket because the team is
delivering. They are the numero uno in Test and ODI. If we
produce results in Hockey, people will take interest in this
also," Nobbs said.
"I don`t claim to be at top but India will be among the
top-ranking teams in next five years," promised the Aussie.
Asked whether he would be bringing any support staff from
Australia, Nobbs replied in the negative.
"I don`t think there is an urgent need for that. I will
see after some time," he said.
He is also optimistic about qualifying for London
Olympics 2012 but admitted it will be tough.
"It will be very tough as we have such a short time for
preparation. Other countries are 5-6 years ahead of us in
terms of preparations.
"But these boys are capable of qualifying. We have
initiated the build-up process and everyone has to work really
hard," said Nobbs.
Olympic qualifiers will be held in Delhi from February 15
to 26 next year.
Before that India will play the inaugural Asian Champions
trophy (September 3-12, Ordos, China) and Champions trophy
(December 3-11) at home.
Asian Champions trophy will be Nobbs` first assignment as
"I don`t want to predict or claim anything. It will be my
first tournament with the Indian team and I am looking forward
to it. I take it as stepping towards a long road ahead. We
don`t have much time but we will do good for sure," he said.
"Pakistan is also there, so it will be an interesting
contest. It is always a pleasure to watch arch-rivals
playing," he added.