A good outing in Asia Cup key to success in busy 2022, says women's hockey VC Ekka
Muscat, Jan 17 (Hockey News) Performing well at the upcoming Asia Cup will give the Indian women's hockey team the requisite momentum for a busy 2022 season, which includes the Asian Games and the Commonwealth Games, says vice-captain Deep Grace Ekka.
Besides defending the title, a spot in this year's FIH Women's World Cup will be at stake for the Indian women in the Asia Cup to be held at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex here from January 21 to 28.
India will open its campaign against Malaysia on January 21 and top-four teams from the event will earn direct qualification to the World Cup to be co-hosted by Spain and Netherlands later this year.
"It is important for us to perform well in the tournament as it will set the momentum for us for the upcoming challenges in 2022. It is a packed year for us, and the more games we play, the more we will be able to test ourselves and what we have been working on the training grounds," Ekka said in a statement issued by Hockey India.
Besides India, other participating teams in the tournament are China, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea and Thailand.
"It is sort of a new start for us. This will be our first full tournament after the Tokyo Olympics as unfortunately, we could only play one game in Korea at the Women's Asian Champions Trophy 2021," Ekka said.
India won the women's Hockey Asia Cup in 2017 to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, where they managed to reach the knockout stages.
In 2018, India also went on to win the silver medal at the Asian Games.
And Ekka believes a successful title defence in Muscat will be key for the team going forward.
"Winning the women's Hockey Asia Cup trophy in 2017 was a turning point for us and it really gave us the confidence that we can perform on the big stage if we play as a team.
"Winning the trophy once again can really motivate our players to perform even better this year and have an unforgettable 2022. It is very important for us to have a positive start," she said.
Also Read : We want to prove Tokyo wasn't a one day wonder, says women's hockey coach Schopman
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We want to prove Tokyo wasn't a one day wonder, says women's hockey coach Schopman
New Delhi, Jan 14 (Hockey News) The extraordinary performance at the Tokyo Olympics was not a "one day wonder", asserted Indian women's hockey team chief coach Janneke Schopman, who is looking forward to this year's World Cup.
Schopman said after the high in Tokyo, they are now determined to defend their Asia Cup title, which will ensure a direct qualification to the FIH Women's World Cup, to be jointly co-hosted by Spain and Netherlands from July 1 to 17.
The Indian women recorded their best-ever performance in the Olympics last year by finishing fourth.
"Out performance in Tokyo exceeded our expectations but we still have more gains to make to be in the top-6 in the world. We need to keep improving because the girls don't want to be a one-day wonder," Schopman said during a virtual press conference ahead of Asia Cup.
"They want to be right up there and play against the best of the world to their potential." After the Olympics, the Indian women played just one game in the Asian Champions Trophy in Donghae, South Korea last month when they were forced to pull out of the event after one player tested positive for COVID-19.
"Since Olympics we played just one game. The Asia Cup is very important to us as it is a qualifying tournament for the World Cup. There is plenty of stake at place," the coach said.
The top four team from the Asia Cup, scheduled to be held between January 21-28 at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex in Muscat, will directly qualify for this year's World Cup.
Schopman said her coaching style is simple: "work on your individual game and try to be dominant" over the opponents.
"As a coach I have a clear philosophy. I would like us to be more dominant when in possession. We need to work our game and strike a balance between attack and defence. The thing which we have learnt from Tokyo is that we need to focus on what we can control and can do ourselves," she said.
"We need to figure out what we are good at on the pitch and see work on our shortcomings." Veteran goalkeeper Savita Punia, who will lead the side in the Asia Cup in the absence of regular skipper Rani Rampal who is recovering from an injury, said Tokyo Games is a thing of the past as a busy season awaits, which includes two big-ticket events -- the Asian Games and the Commonwealth Games.
"The whole year is important for us. We have 3-4 major tournaments lined up including the CWG and Asian Games. Besides we will also make our debut at the FIH Pro League this year.
"Our main focus is to qualify for the World Cup through Asia Cup and then win the Asian Games to directly qualify for the 2024 Paris Olympics," she said.
Also Read : HI announces core probable group for women's hockey team
News Source : PTI
HI announces core probable group for women's hockey team
New Delhi, Jan 14 (Hockey News) Hockey India on Friday announced a new-look core probable group for the senior women's team which will play in many major international tournaments this year.
The group was selected following selection trials held in Sports Authority of India, Bengaluru for a group of 60 who were called-in on the basis of their performances in various national level events.
"It is time for us to start afresh and plan for the future. We have grown over the past year with our experiences in Tokyo and we must continue to develop, and grow in the coming years, ahead of Paris 2024," India women's team chief coach Janneke Schopman said in a release issued by Hockey India.
While an 18-member Indian team, led by Savita, will be travelling to Muscat for the upcoming women's hockey Asia Cup, the remaining players from the core group will stay on at the camp and continue to train for the FIH Hockey Pro League matches to be held in Bhubaneswar, Odisha next month.
"The upcoming camp is important for us to recognise the players who are ready to showcase their skills on the biggest stages, and also to work on the areas where we need to improve upon," Schopman said.
List of players: Savita, Rajani Etimarpu, Bichu Devi Kharibam, Deep Grace Ekka, Gurjit Kaur, Nikki Pradhan, Udita, Ishika Chaudhary, Suman Devi Thoudam, Akshata Abaso Dhekale, Mahima Chaudhary, Rashmita Minz, Nisha, Salima Tete, Sushila Chanu Pukhrambam, Jyoti, Navjot Kaur, Monika, Namita Toppo, Mariana Kujur, Sonika, Neha, Baljeet Kaur, Upasana Singh, Lalremsiami, Navneet Kaur, Rajwinder Kaur, Vandana Katariya, Sharmila Devi, Deepika, Sangita Kumari, Preeti Dubey, Aishwarya Rajesh Chavan In Rehabilitation Camp: Rani, Reena Khokhar, Manpreet Kaur.
Also Read : Savita named captain of Indian women hockey team for Asia Cup in Muscat
News Source : PTI
Savita named captain of Indian women hockey team for Asia Cup in Muscat
New Delhi, Jan 12 (Hockey News) Experienced goalkeeper Savita will lead India at the upcoming women's Asia Cup in Muscat as Hockey India on Wednesday named a strong 18-member squad for the event, including 16 players that featured at the Tokyo Olympics. Since regular skipper Rani Rampal is recovering from an injury in Bengaluru, Savita will lead the side in the tournament, which is scheduled to be held between January 21-28 at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex.
India have been placed in Pool A along with Japan, Malaysia and Singapore. They will open their title defence against Malaysia on the opening day. They will next take on Japan (Jan 23) and Singapore (Jan 24). The semifinals will be played on January 26 and the final on January 28.
The top four-teams will qualify for the 2022 World Cup, to be held in Spain and Netherlands.
Experienced defender Deep Grace Ekka will be Savita's deputy.
The team includes goalkeeper Rajani Etimarpu and defenders Gurjit Kaur, Nikki Pradhan, and Udita.
The midfield includes Nisha, Sushila Chanu Pukhrambam, Monika, Neha, Salima Tete, Jyoti and Navjot Kaur while the forwardline will see Navneet Kaur, Lalremsiami, Vandana Katariya, Mariana Kujur and Sharmila Devi.
The team also has Deepika (Junior) and Ishika Chaudhary as replacement athletes.
"This is a very important tournament for us and I am happy with the team we have chosen which is a mix of some very experienced players along with talented youngsters who have shown great potential at the international level," chief coach Janneke Schopman said.
"Though we were a bit disappointed with how things panned out for us at the Asian Champions Trophy, we were able to return to camp in SAI, Bengaluru and put in some good sessions of hockey to prepare well for this challenge." In the previous edition held in 2017, India beat China 5-4 in a tense shootout to lift the title.
Indian women's team: Goalkeepers: Savita (C), Rajani Etimarpu.
Defenders: Deep Grace Ekka (VC), Gurjit Kaur, Nikki Pradhan, Udita. Midfielders: Nisha, Sushila Chanu, Monika, Neha, Salima Tete, Jyoti, Navjot Kaur. Forwards: Navneet Kaur, Lalremsiami, Vandana Katariya, Mariana Kujur, Sharmila Devi.
Also Read : Women's Jr World Cup will be played in South Africa in April, Indoor WC cancelled: FIH
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Women's Jr World Cup will be played in South Africa in April, Indoor WC cancelled: FIH
Lausanne, Jan 10 (Hockey News) The postponed FIH Women's Junior World Cup scheduled to be held in Potchefstroom, South Africa will be organised from April 2 to 13, the International Hockey Federation said on Monday.
However, the FIH and Hockey Belgium have been forced to cancel the 2022 Indoor Hockey World Cup.
The Indoor World Cup was scheduled to be held in Liège, Belgium from February 2 to 6.
The decisions were taken during a virtual meeting of the FIH.
The move to cancel the FIH Indoor World Cup was made on the basis of the current health situation in Belgium amid the COVID-19 pandemic and after extensive consultations and recommendations from all competent authorities in the country.
The Women's Junior Word Cup, which was initially scheduled to be played in December last year, had to be put "on hold" due to the outbreak of the Omicron variant.
"Since the postponement of this event, we've been in permanent contact with the South African Hockey Association.
"Based on the reports about the current evolution of the health situation in the country, the EB has confirmed its decision from its December meeting, namely that the tournament should be postponed – and not cancelled - and that South Africa should have priority for hosting it," FIH CEO Thierry Weil said in a statement.
"We're aware that the new dates are challenging for some nations – in particular because of Ramadan or the European club calendar – but it was essential for FIH to fully support the wish of the athletes to play. We're looking forward to a great event with hockey's female rising stars." The first FIH Hockey Pro League matches of the year, involving the women's teams of China and India, will take place on January 31 and February 1 in Oman.
Also Read : HI appoints analytical coach for women's team, also ropes in scientific advisors for men and women
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HI appoints analytical coach for women's team, also ropes in scientific advisors for men and women
New Delhi, Jan 10 (Hockey News) Hockey India on Monday roped in Patrick Tshutshani as the new women's team analytical coach, while also appointing Taren Naidoo and Mitchell Pemberton as scientific advisors for both senior men and women's sides respectively, with an aim to build on their historic Tokyo Olympics campaigns.
South Africa's Tshutshani in his previous role was the director of Canada junior women's team. He had coached them to the 2021 women's Pan America Junior Championship title.
He was also the assistant coach of Canada women's senior side. Among his many international assignments since 2009, Tshutshani has worked as an assistant coach for Hong Kong women's team as well.
He has also worked as the assistant coach and head coach of the South African junior women team for the 2016 Junior World Cup and assistant coach for South African Junior women side for the 2013 junior World Cup.
Naidoo, also a South African, will take charge as scientific advisor for the Indian women.
With an experience of nearly a decade, Naidoo previously worked as head hockey sports scientist and strength and conditioning specialist for both South African men and women's hockey teams.
She was also the head sport scientist and performance analyst for the South African women's Tokyo Olympics squad.
Besides, Australia's Pemberton will take charge as scientific advisor for the Indian men's hockey team.
Pemberton was associated with Hockey Australia as the strength and conditioning coordinator for junior men's team. He was also the head of Athletic Performance and Athletic Performance coach at the ACT Academy of Sport and the strength and conditioning coach for Contractor Royal Australian Airforce.
"It's absolutely wonderful to have Taren Naidoo and Mitchell Pemberton on board as scientific advisors of the Indian women hockey team and Indian men's hockey team respectively.
"We are also happy to bring on board Patrick Tshutshani as the analytical coach of the Indian women's hockey team," Hockey India president Gyanendro Ningombam said in a statement.
"We would also like to thank the Sports Authority of India for completing the formalities at the earliest to ensure the new recruits join the respective camps as soon as possible.
"Taren, Mitchell and Patrick have tremendous experience in their respective fields and we are certain that they will help us achieve our goals in the upcoming years."
Also Read : Sreejesh in race for World Games Athlete of the Year award
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Sreejesh in race for World Games Athlete of the Year award
Lausanne, Jan 4 (Hockey News) Olympic bronze medal winning India men's hockey goalkeeper PR Sreejesh is in race to win the prestigious World Games Athlete of the Year award after being nominated for the honour.
The winner will be selected following an online voting process which begins on January 10 and ends of January 31.
Elected FIH Goalkeeper of the Year for 2021, Sreejesh -- a triple Olympian with over 240 international appearances -- has enjoyed an exceptional 12 months, producing his very best form to help his team claim a historic bronze at the Tokyo Games.
If Sreejesh manages to win, he will be the second hockey player from the country to bag the title after women's team skipper Rani Rampal.
Rani became the first-ever hockey player to win the award in 2020. A total of 24 athletes have been nominated for the award.
From the list of 24, the 10 best, as measured on January 23, will move on to the final, the voting for which will continue until January 31.
Also Read : Good outing in Asia Cup key for success in 2022, says Savita
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Good outing in Asia Cup key for success in 2022, says Savita
Bengaluru, Jan 4 (Hockey News) Defending the title at the women's Asia Cup and sealing a direct berth in the FIH World Cup later will be the key focus for India as it will set the tone for the side ahead of a busy season, said team's vice captain Savita.
The Indian women will begin the new year with a trip to Oman in January where they will defend their Asia Cup title to be held from January 21 to 28.
Top eight teams of the continent -- India, China, Korea, Japan, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and Singapore -- will vie for the top honours in the Asia Cup. from where top four sides will qualify for the FIH Women's World Cup 2022 to be held in Spain and the Netherlands in July.
"In 2017, we won the Asia Cup to win direct qualification for the FIH Women's World Cup in London. I feel that win was one of the stepping stones for us to establish steady growth in our performance in the past four years.
"Definitely starting the season with a good show in Asia Cup will give us the right momentum as we play back-to-back tournaments," ace goalkeeper Savita in a Hockey India statement.
After the conclusion of the Asia Cup, the Indian women will make their FIH Pro League debut, playing against Netherlands, Spain, Germany and England in Bhubaneswar.
The Indian will then travel to Belgium and the Netherlands to play against Belgium, Argentina and USA in June.
"I feel the Pro League matches will provide us with the best exposure ahead of the World Cup (in July). Last time, we made it to the quarterfinals for the first time in many decades.
"With our recent performance in the Olympics, and the support we garnered, we need to live up to the expectations by doing well in these major competitions to keep the interest alive in women's hockey," Savita said.
That follows the Indian women team's two big assignment of the year -- Birmingham Commonwealth Games in July followed by the 19th Asian Games in Hangzhou, China, where they will aim for a gold to seal an direct qualification for the the 2024 Paris Olympics.
The Indian women will wrap up the season with the FIH Women's Nations Cup in December which will be played in Valencia, Spain.
"Having a good core group in such a hectic year will mean a lot in terms of ensuring our performance doesn't drop whenever someone needs to fill in for another player," added Savita.
Also Read : We will try new combinations for Asian Games at FIH Pro League: Manpreet
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We will try new combinations for Asian Games at FIH Pro League: Manpreet
Bengaluru, Jan 3 (Hockey News) Anticipating tough competition at the Asian Games this year, Indian men's hockey team captain Manpreet Singh says the FIH Pro League will be a perfect platform to try out new combinations for the big-ticket event in Hangzhou.
Manpreet had led India to first Olympic medal in 41 years in Tokyo, where the team won a historic bronze.
"Asian Games will undoubtedly be the biggest event for us this year. Surely the competition will be quite tough at the Asian Games as all teams will be vying to make the Olympics cut (by winning gold)," he said.
Gold medal-winning country at the Asian Games, starting September 10, automatically qualifies for the Olympics. India had won a bronze in the Jakarta Games in 2018.
The FIH Pro League matches begin in February and India will play the likes of Spain, Germany, Argentina and England in Bhubaneswar.
"This year is going to be quite exciting with back-to-back tournaments all year long. We begin with FIH Pro League matches in February. After almost two years, we will be returning to our favourite venue in Bhubaneswar where we will play double-headers against Spain, Germany, Argentina and England," he said.
"The FIH Pro League will help us gain some really good match experience ahead of Asian Games. Additionally, it will give us great opportunity to try out different combinations ahead of Asian Games," he said in a Hockey India release.
The players are set to report at SAI Bengaluru for the national camp after a short break following their Asian Champions Trophy outing in Dhaka.
Manpreet said the camp will be important to assess their performances from last year and also plan for the year ahead.
"It was a very good 10-day break for all of us, spending some quality time with our families. I feel we have returned to the camp feeling mentally fresh and ready for the challenge ahead.
"We will be assessing our performances in 2021 with the Chief Coach and support staff and we will also draw up a road map for 2022," added the midfielder.
Also Read : From Rio 2016 to Tokyo 2020, we have come a long way: Rani Rampal
News Source : PTI
From Rio 2016 to Tokyo 2020, we have come a long way: Rani Rampal
New Delhi, Dec 31 (Hockey News) Indian women's team hockey team skipper Rani Rampal feels their memorable run at the Tokyo Olympics has taught the players to perform under extreme pressure.
Speaking on the podcast 'Hockey Te Charcha', the 27-year-old opened up on the team's record fourth-place finish at the Tokyo Olympics, while also reflecting on the year gone by.
"2021 proved to be a good year for us. We could have won a medal at the Tokyo Olympic Games. We will always feel the pain of not being able to do that, because we were so close. It was not hard to accept it at first," she said.
"But we finished 12th in 2016 when we went to Rio Olympics and this time at Tokyo Olympics we finished 4th. So, it has been a big growth for women's hockey." The Indian women's team narrowly had missed out on a historic bronze in Tokyo but recorded its best-ever performance at the Olympics.
"When we returned, the Indian fans appreciated our efforts. We felt that we did something good that fans are giving us so much love and respect. This gives us confidence to do even better in future." She further went on to speak about how the team gained confidence from 1-0 win over Australia in the quarterfinal and felt they could beat World No. 2 Argentina in the semifinal to earn a podium finish.
"I feel 100 percent we could have won the semifinal match against Argentina. We took an early lead in the match and put them under pressure. We executed everything coaches told us but conceding PCs cost us," Rani said.
"But I think it was a huge learning experience for all the players in the team who will get an understanding of how to remain calm in knockout matches of big tournaments. We will surely get better the next time."
Also Read : Senior women's hockey camp starts with 60 players, list to be pruned down to 33
News Source : PTI
Senior women's hockey camp starts with 60 players, list to be pruned down to 33
New Delhi, Dec 27 (Hockey News) A total of 60 players have joined the senior women's national hockey camp which began at the Sports Authority of India south centre in Bengaluru on Monday.
The players have been selected on the basis of their performance at the recently-held 11th senior women's national championship, the inter-department national championship and other Hockey India sanctioned domestic events.
The 60-member list also includes players, who have been retained from the senior women's core group based on their performance in international tournaments, a Hockey India release stated.
Players who have done well for the junior women's team have also been selected in this group which will be pruned down to 33 players ahead of their preparations for next year's women's Asia Cup.
"This list of players has been selected keeping in mind their international performances in both senior and junior women's tournaments as well as the Senior Women National Championship 2021, 1st Senior Women Inter-Department National Championship 2021 and other Hockey India sanctioned domestic events.
"While most of the players from the previous 33 senior women's core probable group have made it to this list, they are aware that they need to establish their potential during the trials to ensure they are picked in the final list of 33 players," said women's team chief coach Janneke Schopman.
"The next few weeks will surely be exciting as I will get to watch some of the fresh talent who are expected to add depth to the existing pool of players.
"With several top tournaments next year including the Asia Cup 2022, FIH Hockey Pro League and then the FIH Women's World Cup and the all-important Asian Games, it will be critical for us to have a strong pool of 33," she added.
List of players: Goalkeepers: Savita, Rajani Etimarpu, Bichu Devi Kharibam, Alpha Kerketta, Sheweta, Susmita Patil.
Defenders: Deep Grace Ekka, Gurjit Kaur, Nikki Pradhan, Manpreet Kaur, Rashmita Minz, Suman Devi Thoudam, Mahima Choudhary, Gagandeep Kaur, Udita, Akshata Dhekale, Ishika Chaudhary, Marina Lalramnghaki, Priyanka, Reet, Reema Baxla, Anjali HR, Renuka Yadav, Mudita.
Midfielders: Nisha, Salima Tete, Pukhrambam Sushila Chanu, Jyoti, Navjot Kaur, Monika, Lilima Minz, Namita Toppo, Reena Khokhar, Mariana Kujur, Sonika, Neha, Ajmina Kujur, Baljeet Kaur, Sushma Kumari.
Forwards: Rani, Lalremsiami, Navneet Kaur, Rajwinder Kaur, Vandana Katariya, Sharmila Devi, Deepika, Jiwan Kishori Toppo, Lalrindiki, Sangita Kumari, Archana Bhardwaj, Sarabdeep Kaur, Navjot Kaur, Jyoti, Monika Sihag, Preeti Dubey, Raju Ranwa, Arya KM, Upasana Singh, Dipti Lakra, Aishwarya Chavan.
Also Read : Men's bronze medal, inspiring 4th place for women at Tokyo Games usher in new dawn for hockey
News Source : PTI
Men's bronze medal, inspiring 4th place for women at Tokyo Games usher in new dawn for hockey
New Delhi, Dec 26 (Hockey News) A bronze medal was good enough to write a golden chapter in Indian hockey, which was desperately seeking a revival for long, as Indian men and women teams conjured up an inspirational show at the Tokyo Games which will be remembered for ages.
A historic bronze-winning show by the men's team and an outstanding fourth place finish for the women's team infused fresh life into the game which was in danger of slipping into oblivion.
Defying all odds and challenges thrown by the COVID-19 pandemic, Indian men's team ushered in a new dawn in 2021 by ending a 41-year long wait a medal at the Olympics - a stage which it owned in its glorious past.
The women's team narrowly missed out on a historic bronze but its best-ever show at the showpiece made it even more memorable for the fans who emotionally connect with the game.
The players were confined to a bio-bubble at the SAI Centre in Bengaluru in 2020 but the year 2021 started on a bright note as the Indian men's team fought hard against Germany and Great Britain to finish the four-match European tour with two wins and as many draws.
The upward swing continued as India continued its unbeaten run on the Argentina tour, beating the 2016 Olympic champions twice and drawing as many in four practice games.
The team also won against the Los Leones in the two-match FIH Pro League tie to set the momentum for what eventually turned out to be a watershed year for Indian hockey.
Next came the most important event for the eight-time past winners, the Tokyo Olympics, where India finished second in pool stages, winning four out of five matches.
The Manpreet-led side defeated Great Britain 3-1 in the quarterfinal before losing 2-5 against Belgium in the last four round.
However, India staged a remarkable comeback and earned a 5-4 win over Germany to clinch the much-needed bronze medal.
By virtue of their historic Olympic campaign, the Indians swept the FIH Hockey Star Awards 2021 winning all categories, which created a bit of controversy with Olympic champions Belgium crying foul.
Harmanpreet Singh was crowned the FIH Player of the Year, PR Sreejesh won the Goalkeeper of the Year, Vivek Sagar Prasad won FIH Rising Star of the Year award for the second consecutive time and India's chief coach Graham Reid was awarded the FIH Coach of the Year.
The Olympic glory also earned national recognitions for all the members of the hockey team with PR Sreejesh and skipper Manpreet being honoured with the prestigious Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award, the highest sporting honour of the country, and all other players receiving the Arjuna award for their accomplishment.
The year, however, ended on a bit sad note for India as they failed to defend their Asian Champions Trophy title, finishing third after beating arch-rivals Pakistan 4-3 in the bronze medal match.
The Indian women's hockey team also added to the cherry by achieving many firsts in 2021.
From a historic fourth-place finish at the Tokyo Olympics to achieving the best-ever FIH world rankings to sweeping FIH Hockey Stars Awards 2021 in all categories, the year gone by was nothing short of a fairytale for the Indian women team.
The Rani Rampal-led side, that started the Olympic campaign with three losses, later pulled off, arguably, one of the biggest upsets in world hockey with win over mighty Australia in the quarterfinals.
But as luck would have it, the Indian women missed out on an Olympic medal by whisker after losing 1-2 to Argentina in the semifinals before suffering 3-4 heartbreak at the hands of Great Britain in the bronze medal match.
But the fourth place finish was more than enough to build women hockey's identity in the country.
The fourth-place finish also gave the Indian women's team its highest-ever FIH world ranking, eighth, in August but will end the year a rung below in the ninth spot due to the side's withdrawal from the women's Asian Champions Trophy 2021 in Korea after being hit by the dreaded virus.
However, the Indian junior men's hockey team turned out to be a big let down at the end of the year as it failed to defend its World Cup title in Bhubaneswar earlier this month. The team finished fourth after losing 1-3 to France in the bronze medal play-off.
The year gone by has boosted confidence of the Blue Sticks ahead of two major events lined up next year -- the Asian Games and Birmingham Commonwealth Games.
The self belief is first major prerequisite for success and the two teams now have it in abundance.
Also Read : Uttar Pradesh crowned 11th Hockey India junior national championship winners
News Source : PTI
Uttar Pradesh crowned 11th Hockey India junior national championship winners
Kovilpatti (Tamil Nadu), Dec 25 (Hockey News) Uttar Pradesh were crowned the winners of the 11th Junior National Men's Hockey Championship following a 3-1 victory over Chandigarh in the final here on Saturday.
UP thus maintained their 100 percent record in the tournament.
Tournament top-scorer Sharda Nand Tiwari opened the scoring for Uttar Pradesh in the 15th minute with a trademark penalty corner, before Arun Sahani (16', 34') stretched the lead further with a brace.
Raman pulled one goal back for Chandigarh in the 51st minute, but Uttar Pradesh held on to the lead to be crowned champions of the tournament.
In the 3rd/4th place playoff match, Odisha edged out Haryana 3-2 in a closely contested affair to clinch the third place in the competition.
Odisha took the lead in the match through Deepak Minz (27'), only to be pegged back by two goals from Rohit (34') and Deepak (36'), who put Haryana in the lead in the third quarter.
Odisha answered back with a brace of their own at the start of the fourth quarter, scored by Sushant Toppo (47') and Sudeep Chirmako (49').
Also Read : Hockey rankings: Indian men to finish 2021 in third spot, women drop to ninth
News Source : PTI
Hockey rankings: Indian men to finish 2021 in third spot, women drop to ninth
Lausanne, Dec 23 (Hockey News) Olympic bronze winning Indian men's hockey team will end the year in third spot, its highest-ever, as per the International Hockey Federation (FIH) rankings released on Thursday.
The Manpreet Singh-led Indian team won the bronze in Tokyo Games earlier this year to end a 41-year medal wait for the country. India, who finished third in the just-concluded Asian Champions Trophy in Dhaka, will end the year with 2296.038 points behind Olympic champions Belgium and toppers Australia.
Australia have leapfrogged Belgium in the latest chart following the Red Lions' recent FIH Hockey Pro League draw and defeat at the hands of the Netherlands.
Australia will close the year with 2642.25 points, just 10 points ahead of FIH Hockey Pro League and Olympic champions Belgium, who have 2632.12.
Netherlands (2234.33) and Germany (2038.71) are placed in fourth and fifth positions respectively. The top ten is completed by England (6th - 1990.62), Argentina (7th - 1826.11), New Zealand (8th - 1598.24), Spain (9th - 1532.33) and Malaysia (10th - 1427.18).
The Asian Champions Trophy saw various exchanges of ranking points between the competing teams, although there was little in terms of movement. Champions South Korea remain 16th with runners up Japan still in 17th position. Fourth placed finishers Pakistan continue to hold onto 18th place, while fifth placed Bangladesh have dropped two places to 40.
Among women, India have dropped a rung to ninth spot from the last update.
The Indian women's team, which finished a historic fourth in the Tokyo Olympics, will end the year with 1810.32 points.
Netherlands women will finish the year at the top of the FIH world rankings.
The Oranje end 2021 with 3015.35 points, over 600 ranking points ahead of second placed England (2375.78). Olympic silver medallists Argentina will begin 2022 in the third spot, being just 14 points behind England with 2361.28.
Australia (2334.04) will finish the year in fourth place, with Germany (2126.15) and Spain (1959.62) fifth and sixth positions respectively. Belgium (7th place - 1939.88), New Zealand (8th place – 1821.11), India (9th place – 1810.32) and China (10th place – 1677.96) complete the top ten.
Also Read : Semifinalists identified in junior hockey Nationals
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Semifinalists identified in junior hockey Nationals
Kovilpatti (Tamil Nadu), Dec 23 (Hockey News) Chandigarh, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Odisha have entered the semifinals of the Hockey India Junior Men's National Championship with wins over their respective opponents here.
In the first quarter-final match on Wednesday, Chandigarh edged out Punjab 3–2. After Sumit (8’) gave Chandigarh an early lead, Simranjot Singh (22’) levelled the score for Punjab in the second quarter.
Rohit (44’) put Chandigarh in front again, only to be pegged back by Rajinder Singh’s equaliser in the 45th minute.
Rohit (51’) then doubled his tally to give Chandigarh a decisive 3–2 lead, which they held to book their place in the semi-final.
Haryana earned a clinical 7–3 victory over home side Tamil Nadu as Deepak (4’, 27’, 46’) produced a hat-trick of goals while Amandeep (4’, 32’) struck a brace.
Uttar Pradesh trounced Delhi 9-0 with Sharda Nand Tiwari (3’, 12’, 22’, 27’, 51’) leading the charge with five goals.
Odisha emerged a 4–1 winner against Bihar thanks to a late burst of goals from Amandeep Lakra (38’), Suhant Toppo (44’) and Sudeep Chirmako.
Odisha will take on Chandigarh while Uttar Pradesh will clash with Haryana in the last-four stage matches.
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News Source : PTI