Hockey India on Wednesday named a 25-member Core Group for the National Camp to begin on September 16 at the Kalinga Hockey Stadium, Bhubaneswar. The National Campers will report to Chief Coach Harendra Singh for a month-long training that concludes on October 14 ahead of the ten-day Asian Champions Trophy to begin on October 18 in Muscat, Oman where the Indian Team will defend the title.
After the disappointment at the 18th Asian Games Jakarta-Palembang where the Indian team ended their campaign with a Bronze Medal after beating Pakistan, the squad will be looking at overcoming the setback and regroup with fresh perspective in the lead up to the much-awaited Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup Bhubaneswar 2018.
“The Bronze Medal was a consolation and there is no excuse for not making it to the Final of the 18th Asian Games Jakarta-Palembang. There is no point looking back at the loss but now it’s critical for us to look ahead with a fresh, positive approach,” expressed Chief Coach Harendra Singh.
The 25-member Core Group includes three Goalkeepers PR Sreejesh, Suraj Karkera and Krishan Pathak while defenders Harmanpreet Singh, Rupinder Pal Singh, Gurinder Singh, Varun Kumar, Kothajit Singh Khadangbam, Surender Kumar, Jarmanpreet Singh and the young Pardeep Singh have been called up for the National Camp.
Among midfielders Manpreet Singh, Chinglensana Singh Kangujam, Sumit, Simranjit Singh, Nilakanta Sharma, Hardik Singh, Lalit Kumar Upadhyay and Vivek Sagar Prasad have been selected. The forwards who have made the cut are SV Sunil, Akashdeep Singh, Gurjant Singh, Mandeep Singh, Dilpreet Singh and Sumit Kumar.
Meanwhile, ace striker Ramandeep Singh who underwent a knee surgery after sustaining an injury during the FIH Champions Trophy along with defender Birendra Lakra who will be under rehab from 16 September 2018.
“The idea of training in Bhubaneswar was to get acclimatized and we are also looking at playing on the newly-laid turf at the Kalinga Hockey Stadium which will host the Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup Bhubaneswar 2018.
This is a very important phase in the lead up to the season Finale starting on November 28 and we intend to critically analyse our mistakes during the 18th Asian Games not just in our match against Malaysia but the other matches too. Asian Champions Trophy will be one tournament where we will be executing the changes made during this National Camp which is why the tournament in Oman will be very important for us,” emphasized Harendra Singh.
National Campers List:
P R Sreejesh
Krishan Bahadur Pathak
Rupinder Pal Singh
Kothajit Singh Khadangbam
Chinglensana Singh Kangujam
Lalit Kumar Upadhyay
Vivek Sagar Prasad
S V Sunil