Hockey India names Indian Men's & Women's Hockey Teams for FIH Hockey Olympic Qualifiers Odisha

Sakal Times
Friday, 18 October 2019

The Indian Men's Hockey Team will be Captained by Manpreet Singh with SV Sunil as the Vice-Captain; while the Indian Women's Hockey Team will be led by Rani with Savita as her deputy

NEW DELHI: Hockey India on Friday named the 18-member each Indian Men's and Indian Women's Hockey teams for the upcoming FIH Hockey Olympic Qualifiers Odisha which are scheduled to take place on 1st and 2nd November 2019 at the Kalinga Hockey Stadium in Bhubaneswar. The Indian Men's Hockey team will be Captained by Manpreet Singh and Vice-Captained by SV Sunil. While, the Indian Women's Hockey Team will be led by Rani, with Savita serving as the Vice-Captain.

The two teams are scheduled to take part in the two-legged FIH Hockey Olympic Qualifiers Odisha where the World No. 5 Indian Men's Hockey team will be up against World No. 22 Russia, while the World No. 9 Indian Women's Hockey Team will face World No. 13 USA.

The Indian Men's Team comprises of Goalkeepers PR Sreejesh and Krishan Bahadur Pathak, while the outfield players named in the side include experienced drag-flicker Rupinderpal Singh, Harmanpreet Singh, Varun Kumar, Surender Kumar, Gurinder Singh, Amit Rohidas, Captain Manpreet Singh, Nilakanta Sharma, Hardik Singh, Vivek Sagar Prasad, Simranjeet Singh along with experienced attacking players in Lalit Kumar Upadhyay, Vice-Captain SV Sunil, Mandeep Singh, Akashdeep Singh, and Ramandeep Singh.

Indian Men's Hockey team's Chief Coach Graham Reid spoke on the composition of his side, "After a good preparation tour in Belgium, it was always going to be a very difficult decision to pick the best 18 players for this tournament. We have chosen a well balanced side with a number of good flexible options. We now need to focus on strategies against Russia, and ensure we are at our best when we step onto the field on 1st and 2nd November."

Meanwhile, the Indian Women's Hockey team remained unchanged from their Tour of England. Experienced Goalkeepers Savita and Rajani Etimarpu will guard the goal, while drag-flicker Gurjit Kaur, Deep Grace Ekka, Reena Khokhar, Salima Tete, Namita Toppo, Sushila Chanu Pukhrambam, Nikki Pradhan, Monika, Neha Goyal, Lilima Minz, Captain Rani, Vandana Katariya, Navneet Kaur, Lalremsiami, Navjot Kaur and Sharmila Devi will serve as the outfield players.

"We have retained the 18-member team from our preparatory tour of England. We have a good balance and mixture of players in the squad, and keeping in mind our objective of qualifying for the Tokyo Olympics 2020, I feel it is important to stay in the rhythm with the same players who performed well in the preparatory tour. We now focus on making sure that we leave no stone unturned when we take on USA in the two matches," expressed Indian Women's Hockey Team's Chief Coach Sjoerd Marijne on his side.

The winners of the FIH Hockey Olympic Qualifiers Odisha will qualify for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. The winners will be determined as follows: teams will be ranked according to the number of points each has accumulated in both matches (for each match, 3 points are awarded to the winner, 1 point to each team in the event of a draw and 0 point to the loser). If there is equality among the two teams, then the teams will be ranked according to their respective goal difference. If the equality remains, a shoot-out competition will be played to establish the winner. Therefore, the objective of both the Indian Men's and Indian Women's Hockey Teams will be to secure direct qualification for the Tokyo 2020 hockey tournaments - which will be staged in Japan’s capital city from 25 July to 7 August next year and involve 12 Men’s and 12 Women’s teams.
 
INDIAN MEN'S HOCKEY TEAM
1. PR Sreejesh
2. Krishan Bahadur Pathak
3. Harmanpreet Singh
4. Varun Kumar
5. Surender Kumar
6. Gurinder Singh
7. Rupinder Pal Singh
8. Amit Rohidas
9. Manpreet Singh (Captain)
10. Nilakanta Sharma
11. Hardik Singh
12. Vivek Sagar Prasad
13. Lalit Kumar Upadhyay
14. SV Sunil (Vice-Captain)
15. Mandeep Singh
16. Akashdeep Singh
17. Ramandeep Singh
18. Simranjeet Singh
 
INDIAN WOMEN'S HOCKEY TEAM
1. Savita (Vice-Captain)
2. Rajani Etimarpu
3. Deep Grace Ekka
4. Gurjit Kaur
5. Reena Khokhar
6. Salima Tete
7. Sushila Chanu Pukhrambam
8. Nikki Pradhan
9. Monika
10. Neha Goyal
11. Lilima Minz 
12. Namita Toppo
13. Rani (Captain)
14. Vandana Katariya
15. Navneet Kaur
16. Lalremsiami
17. Navjot Kaur
18. Sharmila Devi 

The Indian Men's Hockey team will be vying for an Olympic berth when they take on Russia in the crucial FIH Olympic Qualifiers to be held on November 1 and 2 at the iconic Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar. For the very first time, the Indian Women's Hockey team too will be playing in front of the hockey-loving people of Odisha when they take on USA in the FIH Olympic Qualifiers at the Kalinga Stadium on November 1 and 2. The excitement among the teams is palpable and they are working towards peaking at this important event. Having represented India at the Rio Olympics after 36 years, the Women's team will be aiming to take part in their second consecutive Olympics in the history of Indian hockey and are confident of making history. Make sure you witness history unfold at the Kalinga Stadium by booking your tickets online at the below link, and physically at the Box Office at Kalinga Stadium and various outlets across Bhubaneswar.
 
Tickets for the FIH Hockey Olympic Qualifiers Odisha are available at  https://in.ticketgenie.in/Tickets/FIH-Hockey-Olympic-Qualifiers-Odisha
 
ABOUT HOCKEY INDIA
HOCKEY INDIA (HI) is the governing body with exclusive mandate to direct and conduct all activities for both men and women's hockey in India. It is recognized by the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports, Govt. of India as the sole body responsible towards promoting Hockey in India.

Headquartered in New Delhi, Hockey India was established on 20th May, 2009 and is affiliated to the International Hockey Federation (FIH), the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) and Asian Hockey Federation (AHF).

Committed to the development of Hockey in the country, Hockey India with the assistance of Sports Authority of India and Department of Sports, Government of India, trains players at sub-junior, junior and senior level. The governing body engages in Coaching the coaches with International Standard certification programs, educates and equips technical officials and umpires to find a foothold in international arena, provides world-class infrastructure and International exposure for the players besides regular international competition. Hockey India has also pioneered in bringing top International hockey events to India such as the FIH Men's World Cup in 2010 and 2018, FIH Champions Trophy in 2014, FIH Junior Men's World Cup in 2016, FIH Hockey World League Final in 2017. With its vision to popularize the game and constantly promote it, Hockey India is dedicated to getting our national team(both men and women) into the top three in the world. 

ABOUT ODISHA
Odisha - the Eastern State of India - is known for its love for Hockey. The State successfully hosted the Odisha Hockey Men's World Cup Bhubaneswar 2018 and hosted the FIH Men's Series Finals Bhubaneswar Odisha 2019 in June. Odisha has previously hosted the Champions Trophy 2014 and the Odisha Men's Hockey World League Final Bhubaneswar 2017. Kalinga Lancers, the team owned by the State, is the winners in the Hockey India League 2017. Taking a step further towards realising the dream of restoring the glory of Indian Hockey at the global level, the State is sponsoring the Indian Hockey Teams till 2023

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