In order to train the national women’s team for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Hockey India (HI) yesterday officially appointed former Dutch women’s national coach Sjoerd Marijne as the team’s chief coach. Sjoerd has signed a four years’ contract and will accompany fellow Dutchman Eric Wonink in further training.

The Indian women’s hockey team has showed marvellous performance at the last year’s Rio Olympics. Having qualified for the Olympics after a long gap of 36 years, no doubt the team is gearing up to be even stronger than before for the next battle.

As the team’s performance level is top-notch now after lifting its maiden Women’s Asian Champions Trophy, the confidence level is also high.

While Sjoerd will be coaching the girls as the chief, Eric will be pairing with him as the team’s analytical coach.

Also Read: Vandana Kataria to captain India women’s hockey team

The duo will chalk out strategies for the Indian women’s team’s success at the next Olympics. National camps will be held at the Sports Authority of India campus, Bhopal.

“I am very excited to take on this new assignment. From what I have followed about the Indian women’s team, they are a very talented and hard-working group of women and I believe they have got great potential to establish themselves as a strong team in world hockey,” in-charge of the camp Sjoerd Marijne told TOI.

The national women’s hockey team is privileged to have Sjoerd on board. He had guided the Netherlands U-21 women’s side to win the World Cup title and the Dutch senior women’s side to clinch gold at the Hockey World League semifinals in 2015. He even coached the Netherlands under-21 men between 2011 and 2014.

Also Read: Ex-captain of Hockey women’s team, Mamta Kharab becomes Gurgaon ACP

“We are happy to bring on board Sjoerd Marijne and Eric Wonink who will be working with the senior women’s team in this new Olympic cycle. The women’s team has made good progress over the past few years by qualifying for the 2016 Rio Olympics and winning the 2016 Women’s Asian Champions Trophy,” Hockey India General Secretary Md. Mushtaque Ahmad claimed.

He added, “The team has great potential and talent to register better results in the following years and we believe Sjoerd and Eric will help the team achieve newer heights. I wish them all the very best in this pursuit.”

Wonink, too, has had a fair share of achievements. He was a trainer at the Talentcentre for Hockey Topsport Brabant RTC Den Bosch club. Being in the team, he then assisted the coach train the first ladies team between 2012-2014, which later stood second twice in the European Championship.

We hope to see a major change in the pattern of playing and wish the women’s hockey team best of luck!

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