Thursday, May 19Sports News Portal

Breaking News, Hockey

After Spain, India Men’s Team set to take on World No. 6 Argentina in FIH Hockey Pro League 2021/22

Bhubaneswar, 18 March 2022: After the two-legged contest against Spain, the India Men’s Hockey Team will square off against Argentina in the FIH Hockey Pro League 2021/22 scheduled to take place on March 19 and March 20 at the Kalinga Hockey Stadium in Bhubaneswar, Odisha. Amit Rohidas, who has been appointed as the India Men’s Hockey Team Captain for the upcoming games against Argentina, spoke on the how the team has prepared for the opposition ahead of the double-header.

“We have analysed the errors that we made in the previous game against Spain, and we have trained and planned accordingly. We have had discussions within our leadership group about the areas we need to improve upon. We have worked on those areas and we are confident we will put up a good showing,” Rohidas said at the pre-match virtual press conference.

India previously played against Argentina at the Tokyo Olympics 2020 where they had picked up a 3-1 win in the Pool A match. The two teams also met each other in 2020/21 FIH Pro League in Argentina last year, in which India picked up wins in both the games, one of which came in the shootout. The Indian Captain explained how experience of playing against the opposition last year will help the team this time around.

“We have seen videos of our matches against Argentina and we have planned accordingly. They have been in good form this season. So, we have been in constant discussion on what strategies we have to create to stop their attacking set-ups. Our focus and our practice sessions have been designed keeping the same in mind. We hope to stick to our plans and be successful in implementing the same,” he said.

India will enter the matches after a mixed-result in the double-header against Spain. While India won the first game 5-4, they suffered a 3-5 defeat in the second game against the European opponents. Mandeep Singh, who has been appointed as the Vice-Captain for the upcoming match said that the team is growing constantly with each game and will be eyeing win at the home stadium against Argentina.

“Winning or losing is a part of life. Our team has been doing good and we are learning and growing with each game. We have played against Argentina before and we know they are a strong team. But we have done our homework on what to expect from them and we have trained accordingly,” Mandeep said.

“All of us have full confidence in each other. We will be playing in our home ground, so we hope to deliver our best and pick up the win,” he added.

The World No. 6 Argentina have been in good form in the FIH Pro League 2021/22, with one win over Belgium and two wins against England. Ahead of the double-header against India, the Argentina Men’s Team Captain Matias Rey gave a brief glimpse of his team’s strategies in the upcoming matches.

“As a team, we feel we have to play like we have played the last couple of matches against England. We have to be really strong on the ball. When we don’t have the ball, we have to be really aggressive and inflict pressure when we can. Our goal right now is to win both the games against India,” Rey said at the virtual press conference.

Head Coach Mariano Ronconi also went on to speak on the opposition and gave his thoughts on the upcoming games. “I think they are going to be tough matches. We have watched all the previous FIH Hockey Pro League 2021/22 matches of India. They are very strong on the ball and can really trouble the defense. But we have prepared our strategies accordingly and we feel we are ready to challenge what they have to offer us,” Ronconi said.

Argentina skipper praised the skills of the Indian players and added that his team is excited to play against a team of such quality at the Kalinga Hockey Stadium.

“We have a lot of new young blood in our team. We are focusing on the present. We know India have a lot of versatile players, very vertical and extremely skillful. They are really aggressive and they are running all the time. So, we knew we have to prepare for the match in that way. We are excited for the matches to begin,” he said.

The double-header between India and Argentina will be played on March 19 and March 20 at 19:30 hrs IST. The India vs Argentina match on March 19 will be telecast live on Star Sports First and Hotstar, and India vs Argentina match on March 20 will be telecast live on Hotstar.

Website : www.hockeyindia.org

Photo : www.hockeyindia.org

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.