India may get German TT coach

New Delhi, June 19 (IANS) The Table Tennis Federation of India (TTFI) is likely to appoint Germany's Peter Engel as the head coach of the national team. The position has been lying vacant since the 2012 London Olympics.

Engel is currently in charge of the Spanish women's team and is expected to come to India in August.

"I am really looking forward to come to India though I have not signed a contract yet. I see great potential in the upcoming Indian players and it would be nice to work with them. If everything falls in place, I should be in India by August 15," Engel told IANS from Barcelona.

TTFI has been trying to rope in a coach ever since it sacked Poland's Leszek Kucharski post the London Games in July-August.

Massimo Costantini, India head coach during the 2010 Commonwealth Games and Asian Games, was likely to return for another stint but has chosen to extend his contract with the Indian Community Centre in California, US.

TTFI secretary general Dhanraj Choudhary told IANS it had recommended Engel's name to the Sports Authority of India (SAI), the nodal agency of the union sports ministry.

"We heard good things about Engel and our top player Sharath Kamal too spoke highly of him. We have forwarded his name to SAI but he won't be able to join before August 15 due to existing commitments," said Choudhary.

Engel started coaching in Germany in 1990 and was part of multiple clubs. He coached the Netherlands national side between 1994 and 1999 before moving to Spain.