Junior team coach Ajay Kumar Bansal is likely to take over as coach of the senior team when the ad-hoc committee meets Olympians and technical experts in New Delhi on July 31 to chart out a road map for the Indian hockey.
If sources are to be believed, most of the Olympians and other decision makers are in 'favour' of Bansal. It is likely they give him charge of the senior team till the 2010 Commonwealth Games.
"He (Bansal) is doing a great job. His credentials in the recent past have proved that he is the most suitable candidate for the post. Besides, most of the junior team members, who he had coached, are in the senior side," said an official of the ad-hoc committee. "These boys are familiar with him (Bansal) and he knows their strengths and weaknesses."
Chairman of the selection committee, Aslam Sher Khan, had spoken highly of Bansal achievements at Azlan Shah tourney and Junior Asia Cup. "All credit goes to Bansal, and in my opinion, if Bansal applies for the post of a full-time coach of the senior team we would certainly consider it," Khan had said.
Although former India captain Mohd Shahid was reluctant to elaborate anything on the issue, he did say that Bansal should be given an opportunity. "I think he should be given a chance to prove his worth as senior team coach," Shahid told HindustanTimes.
Maharaj Kishan Kaushik, another possible candidate for the post, said he hasn't been approached so far.
"But, if it comes to me I will readily accept it," Kaushik told HT on phone.
But he was quick to add that nobody can produce results overnight. “Undoubtedly, the present lot of boys is good. But they need to learn how to play under pressure if they really need to go on top again.
I am not saying that give me the team today and I will make it world's best tomorrow.
I feel that a coach should be given more time so that he can work with a certain plan,” said Kaushik.