Marijne returns to coach Indian women

Sjoerd Marijne is leaving the Indian men’s hockey team to return as head coach of the women’s team. (AFP pic)

NEW DELHI: Dutchman Sjoerd Marijne on Tuesday returned as head coach of India’s women’s hockey team after seven months in charge of the men’s side.

Marijne swapped positions with Harendra Singh, who switched from the women’s team to the men’s after India failed to win a medal at the Commonwealth Games last month.

Marijne was appointed men’s head coach in September following the sacking of fellow Dutchman Roelant Oltmans.

He was happy with the change, saying he was “excited to reunite with the women’s team” and was looking forward to the World Cup in England this year.

Before joining India in February last year, Marijne was in charge of the Netherlands’ women’s side.

His first event with the Indian women will be the Asian Champions Trophy in South Korea starting May 13.

Hockey India secretary general Mohd Mushtaque Ahmed said both teams would benefit from the sporting musical chairs.

“Harendra Singh brings with him a wealth of experience and has previously managed a lot of the men’s team players during his stints in the Hockey India League,” said Ahmed.

“Marijne’s first stint with the women’s team was a very successful one and we are sure he will continue to do well with this team as he has done in the past,” he added.