Saturday, December 2, 2023

Sports psychologists bring negative vibe, says India hockey coach

By Richard Bright

India will enter the pressured cauldron of a home World Cup in November without the need of a team psychologist as they search for a first medal since winning the 1975 tournament.

That’s the view of current incumbent coach Harendra Singh, who told Indian media that having a sports psycologist attracted a “negative vibe”.

“Why do you need psychologists?” he said. “If gaining confidence is the aim, then you can even consult a commoner and take motivation from him.

“The word psychologist itself carries a negative vibe and the players feel that they are doing something wrong for which they need to consult a psychologist.

“I don’t know that word. In any team the biggest psychologist is the coach and you yourself. If I’ll not motivate myself then no one in the world can motivate (me).”

India recently failed to defend their Asian Games title as they had to settle for bronze after beating Pakistan in the third place play-off match.

Since winning the World Cup in 1975, India have failed to place in the top four as rival nations such as Holland, Germany and Australia overtook the once dominanant powerhouse hockey nation as grass pitches were replaced.

“Look at the positive side, look at the data and then move to the World Cup, Whatever happened at the Asian Games, that’s a big learning curve for the players, coach and the staff,” Harendra added to the Hindustan Times.

“…that should not be repeated, that is more important, whatever happened we can erase that bad memory when we do well in the World Cup.”

India are pitted in a group with Belgium, Canada and South Africa for the November-December tournament.


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