Malacca (Malaysia): India hockey team coach Michael Nobbs said that he plans to visit every nook and corner of India to spot talented youngsters, who can be groomed to play for the country.
Stating that it was necessary to launch a nationwide campaign to look out for the talent pool, Nobbs said, "Since I took over, I have been busy with the national team preparation. Once the Olympics is over, I will focus on real talent resources of the country. But for that we need to go to those places where talent is being nurtured by various parties."
Nobbs, who has directly flown down to Malacca from London after the Olympic Test event was over, to watch the junior Indian players, said that he would need the help of coaches like Baljit Singh Saini and Md. Riaz to find out the real talent.
The India hockey team coach said he plans to visit every nook and corner of the country to spot talented youngsters.
"With the assistance of young and upcoming coaches like Baljit Singh Saini and Md. Riaz and others, I plan to visit every hockey academy and centre in India to see the guys there. If there is good talent, which I hope there is, we will invite the players to come for focussed training. This could take almost a year, but it is worth it," said Nobbs.
Citing that the reason for Indian hockey lagging behind in the world despite having a number of talented players is the fact that they are not spotted at the young age, Nobbs said "spotting talent early is prerequisite in creating a strong foundation".
"We need to focus on future. We need to develop three good teams in each category. Sitting in a centralised place, watching and grooming only a particular set of players won't serve our long-term interests," insisted Nobbs.
"First and foremost step is to know the extent of player resources in the country, and their talent level. Authorities in India are favourable to this type of survey and talent hunting, and with young coaches at our disposal, the task should not be a problem," he added.