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Indian women’s hockey team leaves for Asian Hockey 5s World Cup qualifier

IANS | August 23, 2023 12:52 PM

BENGALURU: Indian women’s hockey team on Wednesday departed to take part in the Asian Hockey 5s World Cup Qualifier. The tournament will be held from August 25 to 28 in Salalah, Oman.

India have been placed in the Elite Pool along with Japan, Malaysia, and Thailand. While the second, Challengers Pool, consists of Hong Kong China, Chinese Taipei, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Iran, and Oman.

The squad heading to Salalah will be led by captain Navjot Kaur and Jyoti will be the vice-captain. The team includes goalkeeper Bansari Solanki. In the defence, Akshata Abaso Dhekale, Mahima Chaudhary, and Sonia Devi Kshetrimayum will be in action. Captain Navjot and Ajmina Kujur will hold the midfield area, while Mariana Kujur, Jyoti, and Dipi Monika Toppo will be playing as forwards.

India will compete against their Elite counterparts in a bid to finish in the top two spots in their pool and qualify for the semifinals, starting with their clash against Malaysia on August 25. Followed by contests with Japan on August 26 and Thailand on August 27.

Team Coach Soundarya Yendala expressed her thoughts ahead of the tournament and said: "We cannot wait to get on with the tournament. A lot of effort has gone into the preparation for the Women's Asian Hockey 5s World Cup Qualifier and the aim is to play well throughout the tournament and hopefully reap the benefits of our hard work with winning the Tournament."

Skipper Navjot was bullish about the chances of India winning the qualifier: "We have to face some strong teams in our pool but with the amount of work that we have put in to be ready for this tournament I am confident that we will put our best foot forward and return home, medals in hand, " she said.

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