India Women's coach Sajid Dar: Defence is no more a concern
As the Indian Women's Senior National Team gear up for their first match in the Women's 2016 Olympic Qualifiers Round 1 against Sri Lanka on March 13, 2015; head coach Sajid Dar, fringed by the walls of a snazzy hotel works tirelessly as he dissects his rivals.
In an exclusive interview with AIFF Media, Sajid talks at length about India's chances, preparations, acclimatizing to weather conditions and a lot more.
How is the Team adapting to sweltering weather conditions?
I thank the All India Football Federation for sending us five days prior to our first match. This has helped the players to adapt to weather conditions. The players have responded well to climatic changes and weather will not deter their performance in Qualifiers. We are here to win, regardless of sweltering weather conditions.
How is the preparation of the Team going?
It is going good. Every Player is capable of something extraordinary and my job is to ensure that she does it on the Football field. Our Team has the potential to upset some of the biggest Teams in Asia.
India defeated Sri Lanka by a hefty scoreline in SAFF 2014. Will it give the Indian eves a mental edge?
We should not ever get complacent against Sri Lanka. It will give us a mental edge but it will be a tough match. We respect our opponents and if we are to win; we have to work hard.
Is defence still a concern?
Defence was a concern. Now, it is not. The team has responded well and the act of working together as a unit has solidified our defensive strategies.
What do you make of India's chances of progression?
There is no point of just participating in a Tournament like this. My aim is to win both matches and progress into the Second Round. Our chances are bright, given we work together as a single unit.
How have the girls responded?
I have told my Players to enjoy their Football. If they play without worries and without pressure, then they are capable of jotting down some exquisite moves. Every Player is very talented; they shouldn't be burdening themselves down with pressure.