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PM Modi hails India hockey team efforts after loss to Belgium in Tokyo Olympics

PM Narendra Modi took to Twitter to hail the efforts of India hockey team after the side suffered a heartbreak loss against world champion Belgium in Tokyo 2020 Olympics semi-final.

India TV Sports Desk India TV Sports Desk
New Delhi Updated on: August 03, 2021 11:28 IST
PM Narendra Modi,
Image Source : PTI

File photo of PM Narendra Modi.

PM Narendra Modi praised efforts of the Indian men's hockey team after the side suffered a heartbreak loss against world champion Belgium in Tokyo 2020 Olympics semi-final on Tuesday.

The Manpreet Singh-led side created history two days earlier when they reached the semi-finals of an Olympics for the first time in 49 years. India will still have a shot at a medal as they will get to play a Bronze medal match against the losers of the Australia vs Germany match, to be played later today.

Modi also spoke to the men's hockey team leader Manpreet and wished the Indian unit luck ahead of their bronze medal match. The PM appreciated their good performance throughout the tournament.

Modi wrote on Twitter: "Wins and losses are a part of life. Our Men’s Hockey Team at #Tokyo2020 gave their best and that is what counts. Wishing the Team the very best for the next match and their future endeavours. India is proud of our players."

He also tweeted during the match, saying how's keenly watching the semi-final encounter.

India TV Chairman and Editor-in-Chief Rajat Sharma wrote, "Our men's hockey team played very well today in semi-final against Belgium, but they lost because of the unfortunate penalty stroke . Do not lose heart, bravehearts, prepare for the next match. The prayers of 1.39 billion Indians are with you."

Sports Minister Anurag Thakur tweeted, "Boys, You played well. You gave it your best. We’re with you. We still have a match to go. We are #TeamIndia ! And we DONT EVER GIVE UP!"

Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju also encouraged the team by writing, "Don't feel bad boys, you have already made India proud. You can still come back with Olympic medal. Give your best for the bronze medal match"

Alexander Hendrickx (19th, 49th, 53rd minutes), the tournament's highest goal-getter, scored a hat-trick while Loick Luypaert (2nd minute) and John-John Dohmen (60th) also struck to hand the reigning silver-medallists their second successive entry into the final of the Olympics.

India's goals came from the sticks of Harmanpreet Singh (7th) and Mandeep Singh (8th). India's last appearance in the final of the Olympics came way back in 1980 Moscow Games, where they went on to win their last of the eight gold medals.

The Indians had only themselves to blame for Tuesday's disappointment as Belgium's all four goals came from penalty corners. The Indian defence was put under relentless pressure by the Belgians as they secured as many as 14 penalty corners out of which they converted four.

Belgium's game plan was clear from the onset as they tried to enter the Indian circle and earn penalty corners with Hendrickx and Luypaert in their ranks.

(With inputs from PTI).

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