Bhubaneswar: FIH Men’s Series Finals in Bhubaneswar, Odisha to begin from today at the Kalinga Hockey Stadium . All eight participating teams expressed their readiness to face the FIH Men’s Series Finals Bhubaneswar Odisha to begin on Thursday (June 6) at the Kalinga Hockey Stadium here.
India skipper Manpreet Singh said, “After our Australia tour, when we assessed our performance we collective felt that our finishing needed improvement. The past three weeks in Bhubaneswar has been very important for us in terms of getting these aspects right.”
South Africa team emphasised that they want to compensate for a poor outing in December last year where they were knocked out in the Round Robin Stage.
Russia who would take on India in their first match on Thursday said it was an honour to play India in their first match. “India is an excellent team and it is an absolute honour for us to play the hosts in our first match. We are looking forward to experience that feeling and hope to give it our best,” Pavel Golubev of Russia.
USA skipper Ajai Dhadwal said his team’s fitness will be an x-factor in doing well at the tournament. The team pays a lot of attention to fitness and believes this would be one of the factors that would help us succeed, he added.
Uzbekistan’s captain Golib Kalandarov and Mexico’s Miguel Leon too expressed their excitement to take part in this crucial tournament in the Olympic qualification pathway.
Speaking at the all-Captains Press Conference on Tuesday, Japan’s captain Manabu Yamashita said, “Even though we have won the Asian Games and qualified for the Olympics, we want to win this tournament to gain world ranking points. That’s very important for us as it decides which pool we will play in at the Tokyo Olympics,” added Manabu.