Harpal Singh Bedi
New Delhi: The Indian hockey team believes that 2023 World Cup to be hosted in the country will be their best chance to finish on the podium after India last won the coveted trophy in 1975.
“We are really happy that that India will again host the s World Cup in 2023. We could not succeed in 2018 though we had a realistic chance of making the Semi Final . The loss against the Netherlands was a huge disappointment for us but now that country is set to host the World Cup again, we see this as yet another opportunity to complete the unfinished business,” opined skipper Manpreet Singh.
He was of the view that India at the moment boasts of the strong pool of player and their exposure at the international level in the coming years will ensure they have a strong and formidable team for the World Cup. “We have ample time to prepare for the next edition of the World Cup. Our first priority at the moment is to do well in the FIH Pro League and use the platform to prepare well for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics where we seek a medal,”
“A good show in Japan will only lay a solid foundation in the build-up to the World Cup in 2023. We have a strong pool of talented youngsters in the senior and junior set-up and the next two-three years they need to step-up their game and use all the opportunities that come their way,” he added.
“In terms of performance, our focus will be on the major tournaments that we will be playing from now till 2022 – 2023. This also includes Asia Cup which we will would like to win again and qualify for the World Cup even though we get automatic qualification as hosts. The World Cup in 2018 was the best that the hockey fraternity had ever seen and Odisha Government ensured the hospitality and infrastructure was top-notch so the next World Cup in India will surely have high expectations in terms of how it’s hosted,” he added.