Indonesia’s technical director Dharma Raj plans to hire Malaysian coaches

Muhammad Dharma Raj Abdullah

KUALA LUMPUR: The new technical director of Indonesia’s national hockey team, Muhammad Dharma Raj Abdullah, plans to recruit several coaches from Malaysia to help him build up Indonesian hockey.

Dharma Raj, former head coach of Malaysia’s women’s squad, said many Malaysian coaches had expressed interest to serve in Indonesia.

He said there were ample opportunities for Malaysian coaches to work in Indonesia as hockey was played in 17 of the 34 provinces in the republic.

“It is impossible for me to develop Indonesian hockey single-handedly, so if the opportunity arises, I would bring in as many as possible,” he told Bernama when contacted today.

Dharma Raj, 51, said Malaysians had an edge over other foreign coaches because they could communicate better with the players.

“English-speaking coaches struggled in Indonesia because Indonesians mostly speak (only) Bahasa Indonesia, which is similar to Bahasa Malaysia,” said the former national player.

The Indonesian men’s hockey squad are ranked 53rd in the world while the women’s team are in the 36th spot.

Yesterday, Bernama reported that Dharma Raj had been appointed by the Indonesian Hockey Federation as the national team technical director on a contract which runs until December 2025.

The appointment meant that Dharma Raj had to relinquish his post of hockey technical director for West Jawa Province which he had held for the past 10 months. – Bernama