November 26 - Jose Manuel Brasa (pictured), India's Spanish-born hockey coach, has been forced to deny that he has lost the confidence of the players.


Senior players have reportedly accused of being bias and autocratic in his methods and some senior players, including former captain Sandeep Singh, have written to Hockey India to complain.


The players are currently in a training camp in preparation for the Champions Challenge tournament at Salta, Argentina, next month.


The breakdown in relations between the coach and some senior players allegedly happened after Sandeep Singh was sacked as captain during India's seven-match series against Canada recently.


The players are allegedly unhappy with the appointment of Rajpal Singh as the new captain as they believe he is too inexperienced.


A Hockey India official however sought to play down the development, saying there is no revolt against the coach.


The spokesman said: "How can you call it a revolt when these six or seven players are not in the squad.


"Some of them are injured while others could not make the cut when the squad was pruned."


Brasa, who coached Spain's women's team to the gold medal at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, took over as coach in May but currently only has a contract until 2010 when he wanted to one until London 2012.


Brasa, who took over after the acrimonious exit of Australian Ric Charlesworth, whose tenure as technical director was marked by a series of controversies, denied that there was any problems.


He said: "If these players had problems why did they did not raise it earlier and sort it out with the coaching staff.


"Why are they raising issues just before the tournament?


"Have you seen all the 30 players are there, have you seen all the 30 players training?


"Have you taken pictures of all the 30 players training?


"There is no boycott; there is only someone who is trying to cut the grass under our feet.


"Someone, who wants to injure us, one who is fighting against us, because things are going well, players are training very very well."



Related stories

May 2009: India appoints new hockey coach for London 2012