Monday, September 5, 2011

Field Hockey: China miserable performance at Ordos, Inner Mongolia

By China Watcher

For the past few days in the men’s Asian Champions Trophy, we have seen Asian hockey giants, India and Pakistan, continued its shameless hammering of China, a nation which is not known for its hockey prowess, with a score of 5-0 and 4-1 respectively.

It has always been the same story for China which has started playing field hockey more than 15 years ago, not progressing from its tag as the “whipping boys” of any tournament it participated. The hockey management in the country is pathetic with no improvement shown over the last 15 years. Nearly 4 years ago, under the guidance of a Korean coach, the men’s team has shown sign of hope by beating Pakistan and India but it faltered recently. We really do not know why? The women’s hockey team which used to be on top of the Asian league of nations also fare no much better losing to their previous rivals which they always have the upper-hand, that is, Japan and South Korea.

South Korea, a nation which was not known to be a field hockey playing nation has improved by leaps and bounds and was able to challenge the likes of world’s hockey playing nations like Australia, Germany and Holland 5 years ago and it is only recently that it has started to rebuild its credentials with a young team by beating Malaysia and Japan frequently. If the Koreans can play intelligently and adopted its European brand of physical contact and hard hitting game, I am perplexed at why the Chinese cannot do so. Most of Chinese players are from Inner Mongolia, the same breed of people like the Koreans. Maybe, the Koreans should be asked to revitalize a competitive hockey league in Inner Mongolia.

China is hosting the Asian premier championship and it is so ridiculous for the host to lose in such despicable manner. I am wondering why there is no such development of youth hockey and clubs in China. The basic skills are missing. The stamina is sadly lacking and there is just no direction in their team play, similar to the Chinese soccer team. Why is there a need to go through this torture in every tournament?

Perhaps, there should send a team of personnel to Holland to see how youth development programs have played an active role in the continued supply of new talents to the Senior Team. Holland is never short of new stars in the making whenever the veterans retired. If this is not possible, then China might as well stop hosting or play field hockey tournament anymore and the recent big losing streak in the tournament have become a laughing joke for the rest of countries in Asia.

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