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Drag flick king Sandeep Singh is busy in nurturing another Sandeep for future

Drag flick king Sandeep Singh is busy in nurturing another Sandeep for future

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Published: 10 Jun 2019 10:42 AM GMT
Sandeep Singh’s heroism with hockey sticks does not need much introduction. The former Indian captain who is still being referred to as one of the country’s all-time great defenders and drag-flickers has not forgotten his first-minute goal against Pakistan in Commonwealth Games 2010 or his five goals against France in the Olympics qualifiers in 2012. The country’s hockey lovers, as well as the entire sports fraternity, are also aware of the terrible shooting accident in 2006 that paralyzed and forced him to settle on the bed for a long time. With sheer psychological strength and physiotherapy treatment for months in the US brought him back to the field. A film, ‘Soorma’ based on Sandeep Singh’s career including the accident also hit the silver screen last year. But the ‘sultan’ of Sultan Azlan Shah Championship being the top scorer and champion in 2009, however, has not stopped even after saying goodbye to the game. Sandeep Singh and his brother Vikramjeet Singh, also a former Indian international hockey player, have founded a coaching school at his native town Shahabad. The school, known as ‘Flicker Brothers’ is named after Sandeep, who was being hailed as Flicker Singh in his heydays. So far, around 150 boys have enrolled in the school.
In his conversation with The Bridge over the phone, Sandeep described, “We provide all the gears as well as uniforms to these kids. The students have been picked from 4th standard to 8th standard in their respective schools.” The most interesting part of his story is that Sandeep has started nurturing a couple of boys who had shown initial promise of being drag-flickers, which include his nephew Subhdeep Singh. According to Sandip, the sixth-standard boy has already impressed him with his drag-flicking skills. “Subhdeep is showing promise of being a high-quality drag flicker and defender in future. He is tall and agile and his fitness regime is pretty well. While training, I have been impressed by his natural sense of delivering accurate flicks. I am truly hopeful about his prospect.” The 33-year-old simultaneously have been looking forward to work at the grassroots level of Indian hockey. He says, “I do not know what will happen in future. But Hockey India is aware of my desire to work with them at the foundation level.” Hockey India are also in talks with him following a discussion with its current Australian chief coach of Senior Indian Men's squad, Graham Reid. In that case, Indian hockey might see Sandeep Singh in future as a drag flick mentor. Commenting on national hockey's status, Sandeep clarified, “Hockey India, as well as the selection committee members, should believe in the quality youngsters before creating a team. These youngsters will be the actual future of Indian hockey. There should be a combo between the experienced and these quality youngsters.”
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