Rupinderpal Singh : Continuity is Players suffer the most if there is constant change. - SportsGuru

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Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Rupinderpal Singh : Continuity is Players suffer the most if there is constant change.

Rupinderpal Singh was the vice-captain of the Indian team at the 2014 World Cup in The Hague. However, when India hosted the Cup last year, the drag-flicker was one of the surprise omissions. In pursuit of a comeback, Rupinder competed at the National Championships in Gwalior, where he guided Punjab to a runners-up finish on Sunday. A day before the final against Railways, he spoke to The Indian Express on his exclusion, the impact of injuries he has suffered and the need to take inspiration from world champions Belgium’s success model. Excerpts from an interview:

I tried to stay away from everything. I took some time off and went on a small vacation abroad. It was painful to watch the World Cup on TV because I strongly felt I deserved to be there.

Till the time they did not announce the team, I was sure I’ll be a part of it. So yes, it was a big surprise to see that I wasn’t in the team. To be honest, I got the team’s list a couple of days before it was officially announced. Something was doing the rounds on social media apparently and someone sent me a screenshot at around 2am.  He said a few things recently about senior players being there in the World Cup squad. But I feel he should have fought for us before the World Cup.

Returning from an injury is very tough. I suffered a couple of injuries in 2017, was out for six months, made a comeback and then suffered a hamstring injury. It was one of the most challenging phases of my career. Immediately after an injury, you can’t expect a player to return to the same level as he was before the injury. It takes time to get back into rhythm. During this phase, a player needs support from his coach.

The first qualifying tournament  shouldn’t be that big an issue. The final round in November will be challenging. But by that time, we should be set as a team with a new coach. Generally, we need six months to gel with a new coach. So we should be a well-settled unit by the time the main Olympic qualifiers take place in November.

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