WSH put hockey on right path
- CBI arrests Peter Mukerjea, says he was aware of Sheena Bora murder
- Pay panel suggests 23.55% hike, minimum pay of Rs 18,000 per month
- Paris attacks 'mastermind' Abdelhamid Abaaoud died in Saint-Denis raid
- HS Phoolka releases video of Rajiv Gandhi's speech justifying 1984 riots
- Rahul accuses PM, dares govt to take action on citizenship row
Quite often, players unwittingly, and unfortunately, become pawns when two factions are locked in a power struggle to govern a sport. So it didn't come as a surprise when Hockey India (HI) slapped a ban on the players who took part in the World Series Hockey (WSH), a tournament conducted by its rival Indian Hockey Federation (IHF).
However, in a rare gesture, HI has picked nine 'rebels' for the junior World Cup preparatory camp. While the inclusion of these skilful youngsters enhances the quality of the junior team, it casts a long shadow on the future of WSH.
The unofficial word is, like the ill-fated Indian Cricket League, WSH may not take place again. It is learnt that the franchisees are struggling to just stay afloat.
In fact, the huge costs involved in managing the teams forced the organisers to reduce the number of teams from eight in the first season to seven for the second. The players are yet to receive full payment and it's not just they who are turning their backs on the tournament. A few key officials from co-organisers Nimbus Sport, including COO Yannick Colaco, have quit as well.
Nimbus and IHF are waiting for the International Hockey Federation (FIH) to take a final call on the governing body in the country before deciding on the future of WSH. Unfortunately for them, the FIH has made its allegiance clear by publicly backing HI.
Just like with the ICL, the WSH triggered a few good changes in Indian hockey; not to forget it compelled Hockey India to start a league (HIL) of its own. Crucially, it acted as a springboard for young players to make an impression on the big stage. Talented players like Affan Yousuf, Amir Khan and Lalit Upadhyay, among many others, stood out with their performances amidst players of international repute.
- What Mr Mani Shankar Aiyar won’t say
- Results of local elections indicate that the BSP is regaining ground in UP
- The idea of Bihar: Social justice cohesion should be consolidated further
- Why the British commemorate Tipu Sultan
- Why my newspaper responded to Assam Rifles notice
- India is indebted to Shanti Bhushan for undoing Indira Gandhi’s 42nd Amendment