India males’s hockey group captain Harmanpreet Singh says his aspect’s focus will likely be on Asian Video games, an Olympic-qualifier, as they embark on the European tour for Professional League matches, beginning Might 26.
The group left for London on Monday for the primary leg of the European tour the place it can face reigning Olympic champions Belgium (Might 26 and June 2) and hosts Nice Britain (Might 27 and June 3).
They are going to then journey to Eindhoven for his or her final set of matches in opposition to the Netherlands (June 7 and 10) and Argentina (June 8 and 11).
India are presently main the Professional League desk with 19 factors from eight matches within the nine-team match. United Kingdom too have an an identical variety of factors however are second on the desk as a consequence of an inferior objective distinction.
The skipper mentioned the matches will play an important position in India’s preparation for the Asian Video games in September, the place the gold medallist will mechanically qualify for the 2024 Paris Olympics.
“We have very crucial matches coming up as we get to the business end of the Pro League season. We are in a strong position in the table so far and we will look to get as many points as possible in the remaining matches.
“We’re enthusiastic about this tour because it additionally provides us an important alternative to play in opposition to high quality groups. These matches will likely be actually vital for us as we put together for the all-important Asian Video games scheduled later this 12 months,” said Harmanpreet before the team’s departure to London.
India remained unbeaten against reigning world champions Germany and Australia, which helped them top the points table.
This will be the team’s first outing under new chief coach Craig Fulton.
“Now we have had good intensive coaching periods on the nationwide teaching camp in SAI centre, Bengaluru. The preparations have been actually good, and our earlier matches in Rourkela have been a giant confidence booster for us, so we’ll look to copy the efficiency within the upcoming matches,” the skipper said.
Harmanpreet added the team will look to build on the good work done in the home leg to prepare for the tough assignments later this year.
“We’ll go step-by-step, attempt to play good hockey and most significantly look to maintain the momentum going as we now have a protracted tour and a busy season forward as effectively.”