With eye on future, HI names a young selection committee

New Delhi: Keeping an eye on future, Hockey India today announced a young national selection committee, including just retired players, to be headed by Olympian B P Govinda.

The nine-member selection committee, which will start working from July 1 for a one-year tenure, was picked in the HI Executive Board meeting held here recently.

Among the notable young members who have been included in the committee are former men`s team captains Gagan Ajit Singh and Arjun Halappa, former women`s team skippers Savitri Purty, Mamta Kharab, Surinder Kaur and Saba Anjum.

At the age of just 27, Saba Anjum is the youngest of the lot in the selection panel followed by Mamta Kharab (31 years), Surinder Kaur (31 years), Gagan Ajit Singh (32 years) and Arjun Halappa (323 years).

The selection committee will work jointly with the HI`s High Performance and Development Committee to identify fresh talent in the country.

"The selection committee members are young but they have lots of experience as international players. They have 10-11 years of international experience behind them as players," HI secretary general Narinder Batra said.

"We have selected the committee keeping in mind present day environment. These individuals are more adapted to the needs of present day situation. They know better about the potentials and what needs to be done to take Indian hockey forward," he said.

"It is by no means an inexperienced committee. You have somebody like B P Govinda who was part of the last selection committee and who has experience behind him. You also have an experienced professional like Harbinder Singh who is the government advisor in the committee. So, the committee is a fine mix of youth and experience which augurs well for Indian hockey," he added.

Govinda, who will head the panel, represented the country twice in Olympics (1972 & 1976), two World Cups (1973 & 1975) and three Asian Games (1970, 1974 & 1978).

The other members in the Selection Committee are Olympian Syed Ali (1964 Olympics) and former international player R P Singh (World Cup in 1986 & 1990).