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FIH coach Shiv Jagday conducts hockey clinic in Guyana

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FIH hockey coach Shiv Jagday visited Guyana from June 7-20 to conduct two weeks of hockey training for coaches, nationals and junior players.  While Jagday hails from India originally, which is a powerhouse in the sport from inception of international competitions, he has plied his trade mostly in Canada for the past 40 years.

After a successful stint in the 1980s as the Canadian men’s national team coach where he led Canada to its most successful international period of two Olympic appearances, two World Cups and two Pan American gold medals, Jagday branched out into developmental coaching worldwide. 

His first such assignment was to Guyana in 1988 at the invitation of then President of the Guyana Hockey Board of Control, Chris Fernandes.  ‘Coach Shiv’, as he is called by everyone, has since visited Guyana five more times to conduct Olympic solidarity courses, which have impacted on many of the country’s national players of the recent past.

Jagday undertook the responsibility of the USA junior national programme from 1998 to 2005 before developing two training academies for hockey in California and Vancouver. He also spends his time in Melbourne, Australia and Punjab, India, where he has helped to establish a regional training institute that has seen nine players from Punjab selected for the current Indian national team. 

With Jagday now being semi-retired, he made contact with the Guyana Hockey Board (GHB) to offer his services for free in his effort to give back to the sport.  This was an offer that the GHB could not refuse as it is difficult to secure the expertise of a top quality coach in this part of the world without a substantial cost.

Among the topics covered during his two-week stay in Guyana were core basic skills like Stance, Footwork and First touch, in addition to Passing and Receiving, Running with the ball, Triangle play, Team concepts and using mini hockey as a tool to develop the game in segments.

Fifty (50) boys and girls between the ages of 13 and 19 attended the junior sessions, while 35 coaches attended the coaching sessions.

President of the GHB, Philip Fernandes was high in praise of the training programme run by Shiv and considers it of great value to Guyana’s hockey.  When Jagday first came to Guyana, Fernandes was the junior national hockey captain and considered Jagday’s teachings to be invaluable.

Fernandes indicated that the GHB is in discussions with Jagday about making his visits an annual feature on the hockey calendar with a long-term plan for developing even stronger junior and senior teams in four years’ time.

Upon completion of his two-week training clinic, Jagday commented, “There is so much natural talent waiting to be groomed in the correct way.  As I said since my first visit, there is great athleticism, intelligence and adaptability among the Guyanese athletes.  They just need more discipline, structure in sport and in life and to develop a routine where training is concerned.  The attitude cannot just be to train whenever the mood suits.”

Jagday indicated that he enjoys Guyana every time he visits and mentioned the beautiful climate and hospitable people as being two of the main reasons he has chosen to return to Guyana.

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