Having emerged as the highest scorer at the Sultan Azlan Shah Hockey tournament in Malaysia, comeback man Sandeep Singh lashed out at the previous hockey management for not utilising his skills in Olympic qualifiers which resulted in the team’s failure to book a berth for Beijing."If I could have played in the qualifying rounds for the Beijing Olympics, the result could have changed. India would have booked the Olympics berth," Sandeep said on Wednesday.
"The management didn’t realise my value. They didn’t utilise my talent also," he told.The Indian hockey team recently failed to qualify for the Olympic Games for the first time in 80 years in Santiago, Chile.
Despite being slammed by the experts, former coach Joaquim Carvalho had dropped Sandeep claiming that he was injured.The player’s name was not even considered for the national pre-Olympic squad.
"They didn’t know how to utilise a player for the team. That’s why the team failed to perform well. India is known for hockey all over the world. I really feel bad to see India missing the upcoming Beijing Games," he said.
Sandeep scored nine goals during India’s silver medal winning run in the tournament, beating four teams on the trot, before going down narrowly to Argentina in the final.
Speaking on his return to the national side after one year, Sandeep said, "I had something to prove to myself in Malaysia and also wanted to evaluate myself. I was looking to return to the national side in a fantastic way, just like this.
"I wanted to convey my message to everybody that Sandeep Singh is back again," said a confident Sandeep.
He also praised his team mates Diwakar Ram and goalkeeper Adrian D’Souza, besides others for playing a commendable role in the team’s spirited show in the Azlan Shah tournament.
"Diwakar played an important role out in the field while Adrian foiled several attacks from the opponents. It’s good job done."
Sandeep, however, attributed the success to the combined hard work by all the members of the team.
"After two successive defeats, we successfully identified the problems and set those rights," he said, on being asked about the secret of the team’s turnaround in the championship.
"The credit should also go to the current team management, which is doing a good job," he said. Courtsey : DD NEWS