Buenos Aires, Jan 14 (IANS) The Indian women’s hockey team is keen on making every opportunity count in the run-up to the Tokyo Olympic Games in July and the eight-match tour in Argentina provides one such opportunity where the team can assess their game.
“Playing against a strong team like Argentina in their home ground won’t be easy but our focus will be on bringing out our best play against them. This will be our first competitive match in almost a year and we are keen on learning where we stand in terms of fitness and execution against a top team like Argentina who are currently ranked number two in the world,” said India’s ace dragflicker Gurjit Kaur.
She added that it would be a good test to assess their mental and physical strength. “We worked really hard on our fitness over the past 11 months in SAI and the aim was to return to our best form. It is against teams like Argentina where we can test our potential,” she added.
Having cloaked a few good sessions of hockey after arriving in Argentina, Gurjit feels the team is shaping up well ahead of their first game on Sunday.
“We have been here for nearly ten days and have got a few sessions on the pitch. We have paid extra attention to areas such as PC conversion and PC defending. We need to be alert in our defence if we have to do well against Argentina.”
While the team’s focus is on ticking off all the boxes ahead of their first game, Gurjit emphasised the importance of following protocols due to the on-going Covid-19 pandemic.
“We are extremely grateful to Hockey India and the Argentina Federation for ensuring a safe bio bubble environment here. We are in a good hotel which is about 20-25 minutes’ drive from the ground, the food is good and SOPs on the ground is followed to the T. It’s important to be responsible and just focus on the job at hand,” Gurjit said.