India: State coaches hail Hockey India’s efforts in developing future drag-flickers and goalkeepers

The newly unveiled initiative by Hockey India places paramount emphasis on identifying and honing gifted players at the grassroots level ~

Pune, 21st March 2024: In a recent development, the coaches of the Senior National Women’s Teams have come together to laud Hockey India’s pioneering efforts in nurturing the next generation of drag-flickers and goalkeepers across the nation.

Hockey India’s latest initiative, which is a brainchild of President Dr. Dilip Tirkey, marks a significant step forward in investing in the future of Indian hockey, focusing specifically on specialized coaching aimed at young talents in crucial positions. This strategic decision comes after a pivotal meeting that convened to deliberate on the essential aspects of goalkeeping & drag-flicking coaching at the grassroots level, with participation from distinguished former India goalkeepers and drag-flickers.


The newly unveiled initiative places paramount emphasis on identifying and honing gifted players at the grassroots level, particularly in the pivotal roles of drag-flickers and goalkeepers. By creating a nurturing environment from an early age, Hockey India aims to strengthen the talent pipeline for the nation’s prestigious hockey teams.


Central to this initiative is the establishment of a dedicated Talent Pool comprising former goalkeepers and drag-flickers, who will be deployed to premier national academies throughout India to conduct intensive 3-day training sessions. Following these sessions, the experienced athletes will meticulously identify promising young talents and provide them with specialized attention and training tailored to enhance their skills and foster their potential.


Also, in acknowledgment of the invaluable contribution of these former players, Hockey India will offer compensation for their time and efforts, along with support to cover incidental expenses such as accommodation and travel arrangements.


Recognizing its potential to elevate the standard of hockey in India and produce world-class athletes in the future, Jharkhand Senior Women’s team coach Sumrai Tete said, “As coaches, we often face challenges in dedicating separate time for the specialized coaching of goalkeepers and drag-flickers within the camp. Therefore, Hockey India’s initiative to prioritize these key aspects of the game is truly commendable. The success of our national teams heavily relies on the performance of goalkeepers and drag-flickers in the long run.” 


Meanwhile, Madhya Pradesh Senior Women’s team coach Paramjit Singh said, “The goalkeeper and drag-flicker play vital roles in a hockey team, significantly impacting a team’s chances of winning. Identifying and training these talents from grassroots level is crucial for success. The involvement of former players adds a special dimension to this program, offering invaluable experiences for young players to learn from.”


Also, sharing his views on the programme, Haryana Senior Women’s Team coach Azad Singh Malik asserted, “It’s widely acknowledged that a skilled goalkeeper and drag-flicker can significantly boost a team’s confidence. Therefore, guiding them from their formative years is paramount. This initiative is poised to be instrumental in nurturing top-tier goalkeepers and drag-flickers for Indian teams, ultimately elevating their performance to excellence.”


“Additionally, the program will serve as a valuable resource for academy and state coaches, offering insights into training methods and techniques. The practical knowledge gained by former players will empower coaches with the necessary expertise to guide young talents under their mentorship,” he added.

By Hockey India

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