New Delhi: Midfielder Harjeet Singh will lead India at the 4-nation International Junior Hockey Tournament which is scheduled during October 24-30 in Valencia, Spain. The team will participate at the tournament after their good-bad performance at the Australian Hockey League 2016.
The team led by a midfielder is the latest formula of Indian Hockey; Singh, will be assisted by Dipsan Tirkey as the deputy in a team of 20-members for the tournament. The Indian Junior Men’s hockey team including the two is Vikas Dahiya, Suraj Karkera (goalkeepers);Varun Kumar, Dipsan Tirkey (VC), Hardik Singh, Gurinder Singh, Harmanpreet Singh, Anand Lakra (defenders); Nilakanta Sharma, Harjeet Singh (C), Santa Singh, Sumit, Shamsher Singh (midfielders) and Armaan Qureshi, Gurjant Singh, Manpreet, Parvinder Singh, Ajay Yadav, Simranjeet Singh, Ajit Kumar Pandey (forwards).
The team looks balanced with Vikas Dahiya, who was stand-by goalkeeper for PR Sreejesh during the Rio Olympics will guard the Indian goal along with Suraj Karkera as the stand by goalkeeper. In other key names of recent times are Varun Kumar, who had an impressive outing in the Australian Hockey League with seven goals including a hat-trick to his name; Armaan Qureshi, who scored four goals in the recently concluded Australian Hockey League.
Speaking about India’s performance at the recently concluded Australian Hockey League & how the tournament pose as the learning step forward for the talented juniors, Indian Coach Harendra Singh said, “The boys played their heart out in the Australian Hockey League and their performance was commendable. In Valencia, we will now meet some of the top junior teams like Germany, Belgium and Spain which should keep us in good stead for the Junior World Cup later this year. We have learnt a few things during the AHL and are in the process of ironing out the current challenges to emerge as strong as we can before we go to Lucknow for the Junior Hockey World Cup in December.” The tournament is important for the team for their world cup campaign scheduled in December this year.
The other participant countries in the four-nations are 2013 Junior World Champions Germany, Belgium and hosts Spain. India is scheduled to play Germany in the opener of the tournament on October 24, 2016.