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Olympic Women’s Hockey: India face Rio Olympic champion Great Britain in crucial encounter

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Harpal Singh Bedi

New Delhi:  Having suffered two consecutive defeats Indian women face Rio Olympic champion Great Britain in their third Pool A encounter at the Oi Hockey Stadium in Tokyo.

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India lost their first match against Holland 1-5 and then went down fighting Germany 0-2.Great Britain will be going in to this game on the back of a 4 -1 win over South Africa in their previous match.

Rani Rampaul led team needs a win to keep their hopes alive of making the quarter finals.

The showing against Germany has raised the confidence of the team and it was reflected in coach Sjoerd Marijne’s assessment. 

TOKYO – Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Germany v India (Pool A) Photo: COPYRIGHT WORLDSPORTPICS FRANK UIJLENBROEK

“We played better yesterday than in our previous match. The quality of the play has to improve with each match, and that’s what we are focusing on. It was unfortunate that we missed our penalty stroke at 1 – 0, but I’m happy that we had that stroke. 

We had many opportunities to score, which was a positive sign. We played with a lot of energy and were able to put pressure on Germany. We will now focus on recovery and making improvements for the next match.”
 
Captain Rani Rampaul acknowledged that her team had a better outing against Germany than their first Group match, but stressed on the need to make further improvements for next match against Team Great Britain.
  
“We created a lot of chances against a tough opponent like Germany and our defensive organization was better than before. We know that we are on the right track and our time will come. 

We must show our strength of character as a team as this is a long competition and we still have matches left to play,” said Rani. 

About tie against Great Britain, Rani said, “We know they are the defending Champions and they will be a tough opponent to compete against, but we want to focus on our good takeaways from our previous match and identify the areas where we still need to improve.”  

HSB

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