FORMER NATIONAL men’s junior team coach Darren Cowie is the new head coach of the senior men’s outdoor team.

Cowie earned the nod from the national team management committee of the Trinidad and Tobago Hockey Board (TTHB) at their meeting Monday and now replaces

former national goalkeeper, Glen “Fido” Francis, who guided that squad over the last 11 years.

Cowie will be assisted by the experienced pair of former national players Raphael “Raffie” Govia and Dwain Quan Chan.

“I feel honoured to be selected,” Cowie reacted, “but even before going onto that, somebody like ‘Fido’ needs a lot of recognition for what he has done for the men’s

hockey senior team for the past 11 years of his appointment. He has given all his heart, his soul, his time, and a lot of dedication to the role. I can only hope that I

could emulate the kind of commitment that he did put forward to the senior men and actual players who were under his charge.”

TTHB executive member Cindy Martin-Faustin said the Board considered all coaches who are currently working at different levels with the national outfit. And the

TTHB opted for Cowie as part of their plans moving forward.

Cowie’s last assignment was as junior men’s coach of the national team that placed sixth at the Junior Men Pan American Hockey Championship in Santiago, Chile

from August 21-28.

“We would have invested in a lot of those young coaches...we would have put them through some of these (coaching) courses and going forward, we feel coming

out of the junior teams now, we need to give them (the opportunity). So the head of the junior becomes the head of senior and the assistants of the junior will

become the head of the junior so that is our way of looking at transition and succession and mentorship,” said Martin-Faustin.

Martin-Fustin added that Francis has been asked to stay on in a consultancy role to assist with the development of the youth programme.

“No matter how much you have, you still need the foundation of some of those older players and coaches. We have asked him (‘Fido’) to stay with us because of

the youth and the development, so we can have one thought pattern going right through from development straight into the U-18s, U-21s, and then the seniors,” explained Martin-Faustin.

Martin-Faustin said the plan is for Cowie to work with the senior men for at least the next two year-cycle that will include the January 12-23 Pan American Cup in

Santiago, Chile, 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, and potentially CAC Games and Pan American Games in 2023.

For his part, Cowie expects to meet with stakeholders before devising plans to take the senior men’s team forward. For now, Cowie’s assignment starts with a

screening session, for the men’s national squad for the Pan American Cup, today from 2 p.m. at the Diego Martin Sporting Complex.

The senior women’s national training squad, under the helm of Anthony “Bumpa” Marcano, has already resumed training after a one-week break following their

Pan American Challenge competition when they qualified as runners-up. Screening sessions are scheduled today and tomorrow from 2-4 p.m.

The TTHB has advised that submission of names do not guarantee an automatic acceptance to the senior men’s national training squad, as the selection will be

done by Cowie and his assistants.