Sjoerd Marijne says women’s hockey team has improved fitness levels

Indian women's hockey team coach Sjoerd Marijne believes the core group has worked hard towards a good build-up to the Olympic Games next year.

Indian women's hockey team coach Sjoerd Marijne.   -  SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Indian women’s hockey head coach Sjoerd Marijne on Saturday said that the team has achieved its primary target of improving fitness during its camp at the Sports Authority of India (SAI) Centre in Bengaluru. The camp ends on Saturday.

The last time the Indian women’s team stepped out competitively was in February when it toured New Zealand. “One of our goals was improving fitness and that worked out very well. In the past few weeks, we also worked with the junior men’s team in a few sessions to test our speed and handling skills and I am happy with the progress we have made as a group,” Marijne said.

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Primary Focus

He believes the core group has worked hard towards a good build-up to the Olympic Games next year. “We have done well so far in utilising this time and our primary focus is the Olympics.

“We are hopeful of playing good matches early next year that will show where we stand and we can plan the months leading up to the Games keeping in mind the areas that require improvement on the basis our performance in these tours,” the head coach explained.

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Tackling mental fatigue

Marijne said the break will help the players recover from mental fatigue. “The players have worked hard these past four and a half months. They have done it without complaining about anything, be it living in a bio bubble with zero outside interaction or living away from their families for so long.

“I am extremely happy with the attitude they have shown these past four months and I understand that the training camp was physically and mentally quite challenging.”

"I would want the players to enjoy time with their family and follow the Hockey India SOP when they meet people and socialise because the pandemic is still not over,” the coach said.

“They have all been given some homework to do as well because this break is part of our training schedule except, they won’t be using the stick and the ball.”

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