That was the statement made by head coach Mahbub Harun during the national hockey team’s jersey unveiling programme at the Bangladesh Olympic Association Auditorium in Dhaka.

“We have to face three Asian giants in the group stage and I told the boys one thing: you must not give up the match before the final whistle. And I believe the boys will offer some great challenges to their mighty opponents on their home ground,” said Harun, whose team have played six practice matches against a Gansu province team of China in their two months of preparation.

“We are ready for the tournament. The past 20 days we have mostly worked on the game plan and strategy and tried to motivate the players mentally as we want to improve our position from where we are at the moment,” said the former national hockey player.

Bangladesh Hockey Federation president and Air chief Marshal Abu Esrar urged the players to keep up team spirit and self-confidence while BHF general secretary Abdus Sadeque expects the boys in red and green to turn into a formidable side on their home turf.

Bangladesh have been drawn in Pool A alongside Pakistan, India and Japan and will begin their campaign against Pakistan in one of the opening day’s three matches.

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