Former Indian hockey skipper Sardar Singh slams David John for his early retirement

Nov 04, 2018, 08:55 IST | PTI

Former hockey skipper blames high performance director for quitting early

Former Indian hockey skipper Sardar Singh slams David John for his early retirement
Sardar Singh and David John

Former India hockey captain Sardar Singh on Saturday claimed that former coach Sjoerd Marijne and high performance director David John forced him to make a shock retirement in September.

Sardar singled out an incident during India's triumphant campaign in the Asia Cup in Dhaka last year. "I was called to his [John] room just before the match against Pakistan. The coach [Marijne] was also there. He [John] said I committed mistakes and I was playing a lot of individual hockey. Just before an important match, I was called to be told this. You can imagine how I felt. He could have told me this later," sad Sardar.

After the Asian Games, the midfielder was not named in the probables for the Asian Champions Trophy forcing him to think about his future. "I was dropped from important tournaments, the World Hockey League and Commonwealth Games. I thought I will be brought back but I was sent with a junior team to Malaysia. I began questioning myself. After the Asian Games, I was thinking of continuing till the 2020 Olympics. I was fit, one of the fittest in the team. But then I decided to quit ]after being dropped again]."

Sardar also said that he was not told the reasons each time he was left out. "It's alright if you change two or three players but they were making so many changes before important tournaments. Moreover, you must tell players the reason but sadly, it was not done."

He mentioned an instance at the national camp in Bangalore when the team list was pasted on the walls. "The news of the team selection was told at breakfast. We were told that the team list is pasted in front of the rooms and those who are in should proceed to the field and those who are not, will be told the reasons later. My name was not there, I did not go for team practice that day."

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