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  5. Hockey: Captain Savita says India can finish on podium in World Cup

Hockey: Captain Savita says India can finish on podium in World Cup

In the upcoming event, India are placed in Pool B. The other teams are England, China, and New Zealand.

Aachal Maniyar Edited by: Aachal Maniyar New Delhi Published on: June 24, 2022 18:06 IST
Savita Punia
Image Source : HOCKEY INDIA

Savita Pune, captain of Indian hockey team

Indian hockey captain Savita Punia expressed that there is no dearth of motivation and confidence in the national women's hockey team. The team is eyeing a historic podium finish at the upcoming World Cup.

The top FIH tournament will be jointly hosted by Spain and Netherlands. It will be held from 1st July to 17th July.

India scripted history at the Olympics last year and Savita said the Tokyo Games had instilled a belief that they can match the best in the business.

"Our performance in Tokyo gave us the belief that we can finish on the podium in global events," Savita said.

"Post Olympics, we realigned our focus on taking our performance to the next level. We channeled our energy into doing well in the FIH Pro League and finishing third in this prestigious league has given us a boost ahead of the World Cup," she added.

Indian women's best-ever result at the World Cup is the fourth place finish in the inaugural edition in 1974. In the 2018 tournament, India secured the eighth spot.

India's splendid show in Tokyo has changed the face of women's hockey in the country. Featuring in its debut FIH Pro League, the Indian women gave big shots like the Netherlands and Argentina tough fights to finish a creditable third.

"The Indian women's hockey team has never won a medal at the World Cup and it is our mission to make this dream come alive this time," Savita said.

She feels that playing and fighting together as a unit will be key to success in the World Cup.

"We are very excited to play in the World Cup. We just want to play as a team. For us, the Olympics was a great experience. We learned a lot from there and we believe we have to play together and fight hard," she said.

"After the Olympics, everyone in our team is so motivated, so focused. We want to play against good teams," she added.

In the upcoming event, India are placed in Pool B. The other teams are England, China, and New Zealand.

India's first match is scheduled for July 3 at Amstelveen against England.

"Of course, England, China, and New Zealand are good teams. We've already played against them. But we have to focus on ourselves first. We will go match by match," Savita said.

(Inputs PTI)