Bengaluru, Sep 8 (IANS) India drag-flicker and defender Amit Rohidas, who is currently based in the Sports Authority of India (SAI) Centre for the ongoing national camp, has said he will be keenly following the European teams when they resume the FIH Hockey Pro League later this month.
“I will be closely watching the penalty corner variations and defending tactics these teams will use. It will be interesting to see how they perform as competitive hockey is restarting after more than five months.”
Rohidas said he will be watching Belgian drag-flick sensation Loick Luypaert closely. “Belgium has a very good penalty corner attack and they use conventional variations but are very effective. They have quality drag-flickers and Luypaert has done very well in the past. I will be curious to see his game in particular.”
Last week during the National Sports Day celebrations in Bhubaneswar, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had expressed that the development of sports infrastructure and coaching facilities at the grassroots level is being done in an expeditious manner.
This increased attention on grass-root development will reap rich benefits in the future, said Rohidas who hails from Sundergarh, Odisha. “I feel this is the right time to pursue sports in Odisha because the government is extremely forthcoming in developing grass-root programs and by doing this they are not only providing opportunities for budding athletes but also for coaches. Making sports, particularly hockey compulsory in government and private schools will be a game changer as traditionally hockey is played mostly in Sundergarh and surrounding areas but with this initiative, it will help promote the sport further and popularize the game,” stated Rohidas.
“There was a time when people thought playing any sport other than cricket in India is a waste of time and one can’t make a living by just playing sports. But that has changed tremendously in recent years and if you are good at sports you are assured of a job and also recognition,” he added.