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PHL promises a bonanza of Rs 10 million if India wins the Hockey World Cup

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MUMBAI: Premier Hockey League (PHL), an initiative of the Indian Hockey Federation (IHF), ESPN Star Sports (ESS) and Leisure Sports Management (LSM), has announced a cash reward of Rs. 10 millione if India wins the Hockey World Cup.

The Indian team will be richer by Rs. 5 million if they finish as runners-up and Rs. 2.5 million in case they win a bronze medal. PHL introduced the concept of a third umpire for the first time in the history of hockey.

It will sponsor a video analyst for a period of one year to help the Indian hockey team in their international campaign. The video analyst has already joined Indian Hockey team in Germany in their quest for glory at the Hockey World Cup. The league will also take care of the medical rehabilitation cost of the injured drag flicker Sandeep Singh.

ESS India MD RC Venkateish said, “The premier hockey league has been a great success and has given a chance to many youngsters to groom themselves in the early stage of their career by rubbing shoulders with the best players in the world. The league will only become bigger in times to come.

"Supporting the Indian team is a critical part of our strategy. Success at international level will attract more and more youngsters to look upon hockey as a lucrative career option. Therefore, the Premier Hockey League will reward the Indian team with prize money of Rs 10 million in case they win the Hockey World Cup. In order to help the Indian team to win consistently at the international level, the Premier Hockey League will also sponsor the video analyst for the Indian team starting with the Hockey World Cup in Germany for the next one year.“

IHF president KPS Gill said, “It is indeed a big day for Indian hockey. The Premier Hockey League has achieved all that it has promised till date and I am confident that it will continue to do so in the future as well. The progression to support international team from the domestic front is natural, after the entire league’s aim is make Hockey popular in India.
"The team has gelled well under Bhaskaran and has shown an increasingly improved performance. The rewards announced by PHL will inspire the Indian team to give their best shot at the Hockey World Cup in Germany. The hockey world is becoming more and more competitive. There is not much gap in the top teams of the world. The introduction of the video analyst will help the Indian hockey team to strategise in a better way.”

PHL will also take care of rehabilitation cost of Sandeep Singh including his physiotherapy abroad so that the drag flicker resumes duty for the Indian team as soon as possible.

LSM MD SS Dasgupta said, “It’s a very good development for Indian hockey and PHL, I would like to thank ESPN Star Sports for their unrelenting effort to revive Indian hockey."

Meru Sports Technology, a firm that has been offering its service to various cricket bodies around including BCCI to offer video analysis services to the Indian Hockey team during the World Cup to be conducted in Germany in Sep 2006. Meru has developed a product called HockeyMate for match analysis of field games, incorporating the specific needs of Indian team hockey coaches V.Bhaskaran and Harendra Singh.

Meru Sports Technology will be providing technique analysis as well as match analysis. Technique analysis is study of body movements and positions and is based on bio-mechanics. It is generally confined to training/coaching. Match analysis is for developing strategies by studying the game of one’s own team as well as opponents. IHF will evaluate the performance of the video analyst after the world cup.

The Indian Hockey team's chief coach Vasudevan Bhaskaran says, “I am pleasantly surprised by the announcement made by Premier Hockey League. There are not many examples in the world wherein a domestic league has come out to help the national team. The league has already thrown many youngsters like Raghunath, Sandeep Singh and has therefore contributed to make our team a much better unit. The announcement has been morale booster for the Indian team. With wishes from hockey supporters back home, I am sure that we will do creditably well.”

“The video analysis is as much a training tool as it is a strategy tool. The video analyst is already working on specific requirements given by us. We are confident that the team performance will improve with the addition of the Video analyst,” added Bhaskaran.

The Indian hockey team's skipper Dilip Tirkey, said, “It is very heart warming. The team is touched by the gesture. We are especially glad for Sandeep Singh who missed the bus for the world cup. This is very reassuring for the players. The video analyst also will help us in preparing us against the best teams of the world. We will give it our best at the World Cup.”

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