-Defenders to ensure that the first task of defending is implemented to the best advantage: Terry Walsh
Incheon (South Korea), 20 September 2014: Post their Silver Medal finish in the recently concluded XX Commonwealth Games 2014 at Glasgow (Scotland), the Indian Men Hockey team now set their sights on the 17th Asian Games 2014. The team is all geared up to face the challenge of Sri Lanka in their opening match to be played on 21 September 2014 at Soenhak Hockey Stadium in Incheon, South Korea and are aiming to start the tournament on a winning note.
While Sri Lanka and India last faced each other in the 1978 Asian Games, they realise that their match is equally important for both. What stand’s on India’s favour are their back to back major tournaments that they have been playing which gives them the edge of having experience on their side. But the Sardar Singh led team will not take any team lightly and will leave no stone unturned to ensure that they do not allow the opponents to get the better of them.
Having played more than 100 international matches and leading from the front Sardar Singh, P R Sreejesh, Gurbaj Singh, V R Raghunath, Gurwinder Singh Chandi, Danish Mujtaba, Manpreet Singh and S V Sunil will be looking at using their experience in the Asian Games and ensuring that the team follows and learns on how to tackle pressure situations.
With Vice-Captain and goalkeeper P R Sreejesh having his faith on forward SV Sunil being their trump card for keeping the pressure on the opponents defence, SV Sunil on the other hand feels the pillar to their fort, Sreejesh will ensure that he keeps the opponents forwards at bay while his soldiers are fighting it out on the other end. With Manpreet Singh is looking at giving his best support to Captain Sardar Singh at the midfield position, Sardar on his end will want to continue his seamless support to both the defence as well as the forwards of his team.
Speaking on the match tomorrow, Chief Coach, Terry Walsh said “The first game of any tournament comes with expectations and a desire to begin the competition well. Our team has been preparing solidly in Incheon with the pitch, the facilities of the village and the weather conditions now very familiar. No doubt Sri Lanka will be fighting from the outset of the match and our task will be to expose their defensive structure with a combination of patience and quality attacking play. Our defenders must ensure their first task of defending is implemented to the best advantage of our team. Building a quality start to this tournament will be important for us”.
Captain Sardar Singh talking on the opening match said “We are fully prepared for the tournament and really excited to take on the challenges of the new format. Our plan is to attack and put the pressure on Sri Lanka from the outset. This will help us understand their weaknesses and make us take advantage and score.”
The matches will be telecasted live on Ten Sports & Ten HD on 21 September 2014 at 1330hrs IST
Schedule for 17th Asian Games 2014 (Men) –
|Date||Local Time||Indian Time||Match|
|21st Sept. 2014||17:00||13:30||India||Vs||Sri Lanka|
|23rd Sept. 2014||17:00||13:30||India||Vs||Oman|
|25th Sept. 2014||17:00||13:30||India||Vs||Pakistan|
|27th Sept. 2014||17:00||13:30||India||Vs||China|
List of Players-
1- P R Sreejesh (106 Caps) Vice-Captain
2- Gurbaj Singh (170 Caps)
3- Birendra Lakra (77 Caps)
4- Rupinder Pal Singh (95 Caps)
5- Kothajit Singh (77 Caps)
6- V R Raghunath (166 Caps)
7- Dharamvir Singh (81 Caps)
8- Sardar Singh (191 Caps) Captain
9- Danish Mujtaba (117 Caps)
10- Chinglensana Singh Kangujam (58 Caps)
11- Manpreet Singh (103 Caps)
12- Ramandeep Singh (17 Caps)
13- Akashdeep Singh (47 Caps)
14- S V Sunil (143 Caps)
15- Gurwinder Singh Chandi (103 Caps)
16- Nikkin Thimmaiah (17 Caps)