Sprint, and not hockey, should be their sport.
India’s men hockey players, who couldn’t hold forth for even 35 minutes at the recently concluded Sultan Azlan Shah Cup, are faster than the fastest man on earth — Usain Bolt. Or at least for the first 10 metres, and that too, with a hockey stick in hand!
All the 45 campers, before the event in Ipoh, Malaysia, were ahead of Bolt for the first 10m, according to the speed test conducted on April 8 by Sports Authority of India and Hockey India (HI) support staff.
The fastest time for the first 10m of the 40m-sprint was 1.57 seconds, clocked by goalkeeper Adrian D’Souza. The slowest was William Xalxo (1.84 sec). Bolt’s split timing for that distance when he clocked the world eclipsing 9.58 seconds in 2009 was 1.89 seconds.
Nearly half the campers managed to top Bolt for the first 10m while nudging a ball with a stick. Kothajit (1.62 sec) and Dhananjay Mahadik (1.69 sec) were top of the class.
The speed test was analysed during a meeting of Hockey India recently.
“The test was not done according to standardised procedure. How can a player with a hockey stick and ball run faster than Bolt... We’re making fools of ourselves,” said Pargat Singh, chairman development committee, Hockey India.