Asian Games 2023: Two days before the commencement of the football event at the Asian Games 2023, the Indian men's and women's teams will be leaving for China on Sunday. The Asian sporting carnival will be played from September 23 onwards, but the football event will get underway from September 19 along with a few other sports. There were speculations over the logistical issues with flight tickets but now it seems to have vanished away.
India's chef de mission for the Asian Games - Bhupender Singh Bajwa confirmed that the teams will leave for Hangzhou on Sunday after the tickets were issued. "Both the teams are leaving for Hangzhou tomorrow night. Both the tickets have been issued just now (late on Saturday evening). One team is going by Cathay Pacific while the other will be departing by Singapore Airlines," Bajwa said as quoted by PTI.
Notably, an All India Football Federation (AIFF) official remained optimistic of the teams to be sent to the Chinese city on Sunday. "There are a lot of logistics involved when contingents travel for multi-discipline sporting events and at times there can be some issues here and there. I'm not aware that the tickets have been booked but if the chef de mission is saying this, he would know better as he is the head of the Indian contingent," the official said.
The Indian men's team recently made crucial additions to their squad as Sandesh Jhingan, Lalchungnunga and Chinglensana Singh were included in the Hangzhou Games. "It's a wonderful development that some experienced players have been added to the Asian Games squad, who will certainly help the cause of the team. I'm thankful to FSDL (Football Sports Development Limited, ISL organisers) and AIFF for making it happen. Whoever represents India, together we will be honoured to defend the flag," Stimac said on the addition.
Indian men's squad for the Asian Games:
Forwards: Sunil Chhetri, Rahim Ali, Rohit Danu, Gurkirat Singh, Aniket Jadhav
Midfielders: Amarjit Singh Kiyam, Samuel James Lyngdoh, Rahul KP, Abdul Rabeeh, Ayush Dev Chhetri, Bryce Miranda, Azfar Noorani, Vincy Barretto
Defenders: Sumit Rathi, Narender Gahlot, Deepak Tangri, Sandesh Jhingan, Chinglensana Singh, Lalchungnunga
Goalkeepers: Gurmeet Singh, Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem