These are days of demonetisation and India’s hockey players are ‘extra cautious’ with their hard earned cash with strict disciplinarian Roelant Oltmans imposing a fine of Rs 500 on any player, who is late for their training sessions, get-togethers or official functions.
Discipline and no-nonsense approach have been two key principles in Oltmans’ approach and many feel that it has worked wonders for Indian hockey as the team is now ranked 6th in the world.
“Oltmans is a strict disciplinarian on and off the field and he expects the same from the players. Anyone who is late for team meetings, get-togethers, official functions, video sessions or even the team dinner, he fines them Rs 500,” a source associated with the Indian team told PTI on the sidelines of the ongoing men’s Junior Hockey World Cup.
“It is his way to make everyone realise that discipline and punctuality are key to success,” added the source.
The amount which is collected from fines later spent on food and drinks during team outings. The rule is strictly enforced for the senior team while the juniors have been given some leeway.
Some well-known Indian players to have faced the brunt of Oltaman’s rule are striker SK Uthappa and Sardar Singh.
No doubt these are the principles behind Oltmans success as a coach. His first major achievement was with the Dutch women’s team when he guided them to World Championship title in 1990 in Sydney.
A year later, he joined to the men’s team and won the Olympic Games in Atlanta. In 1998, he guided Netherlands men’s team to World Championship crown in Utrecht.
After his successes in hockey, Oltmans stepped on to football and until 2002 was the technical director of football NAC. He also coached Pakistan men’s hockey team before assuming his current role in India.