New Delhi, May 28 (GCSports) Hockey India on Tuesday named the 18-member Indian Men’s Hockey Team for the much-awaited FIH Men’s Series Finals Bhubaneswar Odisha 2019 starting June 6 at the iconic Kalinga Hockey Stadium.
The Indian team for the coveted event will be led by Manpreet Singh and Vice-Captained by Birendra Lakra.
Experienced goalkeeper PR Sreejesh and Krishan B Pathak will defend India’s goalpost while Harmanpreet Singh, Birendra Lakra, Surender Kumar, Varun Kumar, Amit Rohidas and Gurinder Singh will add to India’s might in the backline.
In the midfield, Manpreet Singh will play a key role along with youngsters Hardik Singh, Vivek Sagar Prasad, Sumit and Nilakanta Sharma.
Meanwhile, striker Ramandeep Singh will returns to the squad after over nine months of injury break. He will be joined by Mandeep Singh, Gursahibjit Singh, Simranjeet Singh and Akashdeep Singh to form India’s attack.
India Hockey team has been grouped in Pool A along with Russia, Poland and Uzbekistan while 18th Asian Games Gold Medalist Japan, Mexico, USA and South Africa are in Pool B.
Expressing his excitement, Chief Coach Graham Reid said, ‘I am very much looking forward to my first FIH tournament as Chief Coach of the Indian team. The FIH Men’s Series Finals Bhubaneswar Odisha 2019 is an important step in the Olympic qualification process’.
‘We have selected a well-balanced group including Ramandeep Singh, who is returning from injury and Varun Kumar who was rested for the Australian tour. Sumit and Amit Rohidas too return to bolster our defensive capabilities and our Penalty Corner. Simranjeet also returns to add some flexibility and strike power to the forward-line,” stated Reid about the team composition.
Speaking about India’s preparedness for the tournament, Reid said that Indian team will focus on the consistency of performance and to achieve this, team need to respect every opposition and give 100 per cent every quarter, each half, each game.
India begin their campaign on 6 June 2019 against Russia and will be aiming to finish on the top in order to make it for the Olympic Qualifying event to be held later this year.
Indian Squad :
Goalkeepers – PR Sreejesh , Krishan B Pathak
Defenders – Harmanpreet Singh, Birendra Lakra (Vice Captain), Surender Kumar , Varun Kumar , Amit Rohidas , Gurinder Singh
Midfielders – Manpreet Singh (Captain), Hardik Singh, Vivek Sagar Prasad, Sumit, Nilakanta Sharma
Forwards – Mandeep Singh, Akashdeep Singh, Ramandeep Singh, Gursahibjit Singh, Simranjit Singh