The Indian men’s hockey team finally got a chief coach after four months with Hockey India confirming front-runner Graham Reid’s name for the same.
The 54-year-old Reid is likely to join the team midway through its national camp in Bengaluru, which commenced on Monday.
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While Reid’s name had been doing the rounds for a while now, his appointment was all but confirmed when HI and the Sports Authority of India (SAI) forwarded it for final clearance to the Sports Ministry late last month.
There had been reports of differences over his salary but the federation has now ended all speculation. Unlike previous coaches, he would be moving base to Bengaluru with his family.
“Graham Reid is backed by a successful career as a player and also comes with a strong coaching experience, having worked with the Australian and the Netherlands national teams. We are hopeful his experience and expertise will help the Indian team achieve desirable results leading up to and at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics,” HI president Mohd. Mushtaque Ahmad said.
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Reid took over as Australia coach in 2014 and won a series of titles before a disappointing Olympic outing in 2016 ended the association. He then moved to the Netherlands as assistant to Max Caldas in 2017 and Head Coach of Amsterdam HC. He was part of the Australian side that won silver at the Barcelona Olympics.
“It’s an honour to be appointed as chief coach of the Indian team. As an opposition coach I have enjoyed watching the steady rise to one of the most exciting and threatening teams in world hockey. I have a passion for the fast and attacking brand of hockey that India plays which marries closely with the Australian style,” Reid said.
His first big assignment would be the Hockey Series Finals in June, one of the qualifying events for the Tokyo Olympics.