New Delhi, 04 April, 2015: With the 24th Sultan Azlan Shah Cup commencing on 5th April, 2015 in Malaysia, the Indian Men Hockey Team is all geared-up to put forward an exciting start in their first clash against the Korean team. The opening day of the tournament will witness both the teams battling against each other to start their campaign on a winning note.
The competing teams last met each other in the Semi-Final of the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea, where the India defeated the host team by 1-0. The Indian team stole the show with their marvellous performance.
The team under the excellent leadership of experienced Sardar Singh and the new Chief Coach Paul van Ass will look forward to the team to repeat the win against the Korean team. Being the first international tournament for the Indian team in 2015, the well-trained 18-member squad aims to mark a win by showcasing the best game skills on the ground to ensure a great year ahead.
The Korean team, which settled itself at a comfortable third rank in Sultan Azlan Shah Cup 2014, will fight for an even better position in this edition. The team led by experienced Seungil Lee will do their best to maintain an edge over the opponent team with well thought plans and execution of the same. Both the teams will be eyeing on giving a tough competition and get the better of themselves in the exciting clash.
Aiming to register a victory on the opening day, Indian Captain Sardar Singh said, “First match is always important for any team. We want to start our campaign with a win and the match will also give us an opportunity to examine our strength and weaknesses. Korean team is quiet strong and always rated among the best teams in Asia. They have stunned us on few occasions in the past and we are not taking any chance to take the match lightly. We will play with our full strength and give our best to win our first match.”
Confident about the team’s preparations, Chief Coach Paul van Ass said, “Though all the matches are important for us but the opening match always plays a big role in every team’s campaign. The good show surely enhances the confidence level of the players and brings very positive energy in the coaching staff as well. Boys are well-prepared and confident to take on the Korean team. We have spent good time together during the preparatory camp and that have helped us a lot. Team is very positive, energetic, well-practiced and ready to take on the opponent in the first match. From tomorrow I think I will understand as the Chief Coach where does my unit stands exactly and how do we start working on ourselves as a team”.
An exciting clash between India and Korea is to be observed on the inaugural day of the tournament at 15:40 HRS IST on 5 April 2015.