Chief coach Graham Reid feels the Indian men’s hockey team should not get complacent after the Olympic bronze medal, adding that the next six months will be spent analysing and understanding the way in which the side can elevate its performance to the next level.
The Indian team won a bronze at the Tokyo Games last month, ending a 41-year wait for a medal in the sport.
“Third is where we are at the moment, Australia and Belgium have been consistently playing at the higher level. We need to be able to get to that level. That’s the simple goal I have for this team,” Reid was quoted as saying in a Hockey India release.
“We will be analysing all the games, not just ours but all games of different teams over the next six months. We will draw up a plan of what is required to get to that next level.
“This is a smart group, and we will work out on the things we need to do. We will need to keep improvising and keep getting better. Deep down, the team understands, bronze medal at the Olympics after 41 years is great, but there is a lot of potential we need to unlock and display,” added Reid.
Reflecting on the team’s performance, Reid said, “This group is very focused and mentally very tough. They have imbibed a team-first mentality and have great bonding among them.
“At an event like the Olympics, there are so many distractions, and it is such a huge place that often when you hit the ground at the Olympic village and everyone spread out like ants, but we were able to keep the group together and that was very positive.”
The Australian has been nominated for the FIH Men’s Coach of The Year award alongside compatriot Colin Batch and Belgium’s Shane Mcleod.
“Individual awards in team sports are usually reflective of the quality of the team and its support staff,” Reid said.
With the team on a well-deserved break at the moment, Reid highlighted that once the group returns to national coaching camp in Bengaluru, they will hit the ground running.
“We have some quality tournaments coming up, and there will be a lot of good competition and we will be playing the FIH Hockey Pro League.
“There will be enough time for us to prepare, we will get back to the swing of things after their well-deserved break,” Reid concluded. PTI