Hockey: Kumar and Roslan to hone their coaching skills at goalkeeper school

PETALING JAYA: Former internationals S. Kumar and Roslan Jamaluddin will use their training opportunity at the Drijver Goalie Academy in Amsterdam to further improve their skills as hockey coaches.

The duo, currently attached to the national team as goalkeeper coaches, will join the famous academy from Sunday until August 6. They will learn from goalkeeping guru Martijn Drijver who has over 30 years of coaching experience.

Goalkeepers who have benefited from training under Drijver include India’s PR Sreejesh, Ireland’s David Harte (FIH Goalkeeper of the Year 2015 and 2016), Britain’s Maddie Hinch and a host of Dutch goalkeepers.

Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) President Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal said the association is seriously considering producing caliber goalkeeper coaches to maintain the rich Malaysian tradition in the department.

“We are not just focusing on improving the national team’s world rankings, but we also want to produce top-notch goalkeeper coaches,” Subahan said yesterday.

“Hopefully they can use the experience gained at the academy to guide other coaches at the state level and through the national hockey development program.”

The Malaysian Tigers have struggled to secure the quality of Roslan and Kumar among their current batch of goalkeepers.

Current team members Hafizuddin Othman and Adrian Andy Albert have been inconsistent in their performances which may have prompted the MHC to send Roslan and Kumar to Drijver academy. Said Kumar: “We have used our playing experience to train goalkeepers, but we need to go abroad to further improve our knowledge and coaching skills.

“Europe, especially Holland, is known for its quality goalkeepers. They have produced many top goalkeepers who have won Olympic gold medals and World Cup titles. This will be a good relay for we.

“It’s not just about coaching, it’s also about developing a program and running coaching clinics.

“When we come back, we should not only focus on training, but also educate the goalkeepers. We hope to get all this information in Amsterdam.