Sun, 02 Apr 2023

New Delhi [India], February 6 (ANI): A week since their return from the Tour of South Africa where the Indian Women's Hockey Team took on the hosts in a four-match series and also played World No.1 Netherlands in three friendly matches, Captain Savita Punia remarked that the team has made a positive start to the new season this year and her team enjoyed the tour.

Against South Africa, India won 5-1, 7-0 and 4-0 and drew 2-2 in the last game and against Netherlands, they lost the three friendlies with an identical margin of 1-3.

"It is a very important year for us as we are aiming for direct qualification for Paris Olympics by winning the Asian Games. Last time, we came so close to winning the Gold, losing only by a goal to Japan but this year we are optimistic, particularly because we have got some very good international exposure over the last few years and we are way more confident and aggressive in crunch matches," Savita said, according to a Hockey India press release.

"We have begun the year quite positively, winning three matches and a draw against South Africa followed by good matches against the Netherlands. The tour also helped us bond better as a team, we went around Cape Town - a beautiful city and the team really enjoyed being out there," she added.

The Indian Women's Team will return to SAI, Bengaluru for National Camp starting February 12. In the six-week camp, the team will focus on their strength and conditioning, apart from improvising on some of the technical aspects of the game after thoroughly reviewing their recent performance in Cape Town.

"Chief Coach Janneke will once again review our performance in Cape Town and we will have individual as well as team meetings to analyze the areas that need to improve. I believe the next six months ahead of the Asian Games is going to be quite exciting with each player wanting to showcase their best and make the Asian Games squad," Savita signed off. (ANI)

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