'1st time in 80 yrs Indian Hockey fails to play Olympics'

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{image-Indian hockeyteam_10032008.jpg www.oneindia.com}Kolkata, Mar 10: Former Hockey Olympian Gurbux Singh today termed India's ouster from the Olympics as the saddest day of Indian Hockey.

Talking to UNI, Mr Singh said, ''It is the saddest day for Indian Hockey. This is the first time in 80 years that we have not qualified for the Olympics. However, this is not a time for desperation. It is a time to regroup and plan.'' When Asked the possible causes for the failure, he said, ''It is not the time to start the blame game. Its a collective failure. This team only did so well in the Asia Cup. They also played good hockey in Chile, save the two matches against Britain.'' He, however, pointed out two fatal errors, the first being national coach Joaquim Carvello's insisitence on not allowing Ric Charlesworth to put in his advice during the tour of Australia and now in Chile and not allowing him to travel with the team.

The second was the omission of senior players like Sandip Singh and Arjun Hallappa. ''Ric was a legendary player himself and his advice could have made a difference,'' Mr Singh said. Mr Carvello has resigned after India's failure to qualify in the Olympics.

UNI

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