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Ex-Indian hockey coach Roelant Oltmans on Pakistan's radar ahead of Commonwealth Games

anurag gupta
22 Feb 2018, 09:05 IST

Roelant Oltmans
Roelant Oltmans

What's the story?

Reports have emerged suggesting that Roelant Oltmans is wanted by the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) to take charge of the Pakistan national hockey team. What’s more is that they want him to take charge of the team before the Commonwealth Games 2018, which are scheduled to take place between 4th and 15th April 2018 in Australia.

The proposed move, if it goes through will see Oltmans replace their current head coach Hassan Sarkar, who was appointed as the chief coach only in January.

In case, you didn’t know…..

The 63-year-old Roelant Oltmans has enjoyed a distinguished and a very successful career. In his career that has spanned over three decades, he has coached both, the national men’s and the women’s team and has guided them both to triumphs in major competitions. For a brief period, he also served as a technical director of the men's hockey team.

The heart of the matter

Oltmans served as the high-performance director of the Indian men’s team since 2013 before taking over as the head coach in July 2015. He had headed the team for two years before being sacked by Hockey India for poor performances on the pitch.

However, reports from Pakistan suggest that the Oltmans is being considered by the Pakistan federation, as the team has undergone a string of poor results themselves.

Pakistan, who have suffered a massive drop in performances over the last few years, barely managed to qualify for the 2018 Hockey World Cup, which is set to take place in Bhubaneswar, later this year.

To add to that, the 2018 hockey calendar looks to be a packed one, as tournaments like the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup, Commonwealth Games, and the Asian Games are also set to take place.

What’s next

Very soon, it will become clear whether these are just rumors or the PHF has really hit the jackpot by actually managing to lure Oltmans into the job.The PHF can afford to be really optimistic about the future if they are indeed able to secure Oltmans' signature.

Author’s take

If at all the PHF is able to get Oltmans for the job, it will be a big boost for the Pakistan national team as Oltmans undoubtedly has the quality to double up with his experience.

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