The Indian hockey group suffered a painful go out from the World Cup in January. The agony used to be in all probability felt maximum acutely by way of Hardik Singh, who suffered a hamstring damage all through the gang degree fit in opposition to England, and used to be dominated out of the quadrennial tournament.
The playmaker used to be arguably India’s absolute best participant in Odisha. After scoring a sensational function in opposition to Spain within the opener, he single-handedly created a number of possibilities within the 0–0 draw in opposition to England. His loss used to be a large blow to Harmanpreet Singh and corporate, who had been knocked out within the crossover degree of the World Cup once they misplaced to New Zealand.
“Sitting out of doors (and observing India lose) used to be very tough for me. For the primary time, I used to be experiencing this — getting injured in a large event. It exhausted me mentally. You spend 4 years to organize for this event, you get injured, then it’s over,” mentioned Hardik, who made his India debut in 2018, over a video name.
“It used to be very exhausting. The event used to be happening at house. On best of that the sort of giant event, it used to be a once-in-a-lifetime alternative that you simply get to play a World Cup at house. I’ve performed two now Both likelihood is that misplaced.
But the introspection degree is now over and the group is taking a look against the longer term with the Pro League all set to renew. Hardik is are compatible and desperate to end up some extent in opposition to reigning international champions Germany and Tokyo Olympics silver medalists Australia within the mini-tournament that will probably be held from March 10 to fifteen on the Birsa Munda Hockey Stadium in Rourkela.
With 86 global caps to his title, Hockey India (HI) has named the midfielder as the brand new vice-captain of the group, a point out of which straight away brings an enormous smile to the 24-year-old’s face.
“I am feeling very good after becoming vice-captain. It is a big thing for me. When I debuted in 2018 I never thought I would be the vice-captain of the Indian team. Our former captains Manpreet (Singh), (PR ) Sreejesh, current skipper Harmanpreet (Singh)… I will try my best to take forward the value systems they have implemented in the team,” mentioned Hardik, who used to be a part of the group that gained bronze on the Tokyo Olympics.
“At the same time, all the new athletes who are coming in, who have 5-10 caps, I will try to help them. I have come through the same phase so I know what is going through their mind. I have held meetings With them and I am sure the team will do well in the next four matches and prepare well for the Asian Games,” added Hardik.
India will tackle reigning international champions Germany in Rourkela on Friday sooner than taking over Australia on March 12. India will face Germany once more on March 13 sooner than their dealing with Australia once more on March 15.