We were a bit sloppy in second half: Oltmans

Last Updated: Aug 24, 2013, 17:11 PM IST

Ipoh: A comprehensive win might have been achieved, but India`s interim coach Roelant Oltmans feels his team was a bit sloppy in the second half of its Asia Cup hockey tournament opener against Oman here on Saturday.

"It was a regular win. We played very well in the first half, but in the second half we were a bit sloppy. But it happens because it is difficult to give your 100 per cent concentration throughout the match, especially when you are 7-0, 8-0 up. The heat took a toll on us (in the second half)," the coach said after the Indians posted an 8-0 win at the Sultan Azlan Shah stadium here.

"But I am happy with the overall performance. It`s always nice to get on the points tally."
Oltmans lauded captain Sardar Singh, saying that if fully fit, the mid-fielder will play a crucial role in deciding the team`s fortunes in the tournament here.

Oltmans said he went against his own instinct and opted to play Sardar in India`s opening Pool B match against the minnows to give the star mid-fielder ample time to get back to full shape before the business end of the tournament.

"I spoke to him last night as well as this morning and I must say he recovered very well from his throat problems. We all know Sardar in great shape will be important for us in the last stage of the tournament," the Dutchman said.

"So to bring him up in great shape he needs his minutes to play so we decided to play him 10 minutes in each half and we will build that up slowly up.

"Sardar is a great player when he is great shape. He can create a lot of opportunities for us. Our aim is to bring him a lot closer to the goal of the opponent," he said.