National hockey coach A. Arul Selvaraj paid tribute to his backroom who have played a key role in his team reaching he final.

“If not for their dedicated work behind the scene, we would not have had a team fit and ready to play a taxing three matches the last three days,” said Arul complimenting his specialist dedicated team from the National Sports Council, National Institute of Sports and his coaching staff.

“Everyone of them played vital role in getting the team for ready for the matches and players playing to their optimum.

“They are dedicated lot who spend long hours on the  players and also doing analyse and data compiling which helps me and the players.

“We have a team of 13 of which six of them come from NSI.

“Datuk Mirnawan Nawawi, as our team manager, coordinates the management of the team and together we tick clockwise like the players on the field.

“It is one big family and we work for each other and every role plays a key role in the final outcome of the team. I am blessed to have such a dedicated team.”

Arul’s staff include his assistant coaches, Amin Rahim, Brendon Carolan, S. Kumar, Azrul Effendy, and team medical assistant, Devan Raguraja, physiotherapist, Mohd Fauzan Sanusi, physical trainer from England, Thomas Drowley, psychologist Aruna Santhappan, Arif Aziz  performance analyst, Tham Ching Suen, and nutritionist, Muhd Hafiz Mohd Jailani, sports therapist.

Arul added that this team played a vital part when they had to play three games in a row with rain creating havoc when the match against South Africa was postponed after 14 minutes, and then had to play Egypt, South Africa and Japan, where they needed to win all three matches to make the final.

“While the players did their job on the field, without the dedicated support of my backroom staff, I would have been able to field a mentally, physically and medically fit in the three matches.

“My sincere gratitude and thanks to the team.”