He is heading a federation that is responsible for the meteoric rise of Australian hockey. But Mark Anderson, the Chief Executive of Hockey Australia feels the larger good of the game can come from the development of the sport at a global level. In a chat with HT, Anderson discussed his views on what would put hockey prominently on the global sporting map.
Australian hockey has grown phenomenally in the last two years. What has led to this transformation in particular?
We have been playing top hockey, both the women and the men. Grassroots training with Perth as the base for promoting the sport is a reason in particular. We have an excellent base of talented players. It has improved our game tremendously and the results are there for all to see.
What role does your federation play in ensuring repeated success at the international level?
We have provided the teams with excellent facilities. Be it in terms of equipment, training grounds, match exposure or support professionals, not just our international teams but even the league players can boast of the best resources.
Indian hockey has had a fair share of controversies pertaining to off-field issues and two representational bodies fighting for control. How much does a team get affected by administrative hurdles?
I cannot comment on the Indian situation, as I am not familiar with it. But administrative and official apathy does affect performance on the field. That is why in Australia, we bring all concerned parties together when formulating our objectives and take mutually acceptable decisions. Hockey Australia only implements what has been agreed to by all parties.
Your view on hockey in CWG?
The level of hockey here is good. I hope our boys come through but it won't be an easy outing just because we are ranked one.