India Sports

Indian Hockey Team in London Olympics 2012

It is really ironical and no less tragic that despite being 8 times Olympics champion India failed to qualify for the last Olympics games held in Beijing in the year 2008. Fortunately, for India as well as for the game of hockey itself, the country woke up to its failure in an adequate manner and took some much needed steps to rejuvenate the Indian hockey which appeared to be on its last breath after its inglorious exit from the Olympics arena. The hockey administration in the country decided to appoint a foreign coach for training its hockey team with the primary aim to regain a berth to the Olympics games scheduled to be held in London Olympic Games in the year 2012. After appointment of new coach, the preparation for once again qualifying for the Olympics games started in right earnest.

The new coach Michael Nobbs, brought with him new ideas and new strategies to not only iron out the flaws in individual players techniques but great emphasis was placed in physical fitness of the players so as to enable them to withstand the pressure and demands of the fast paced hockey being practiced today at international and Olympics level. A host of preparatory camps were held and after trial of a lot of permutations and combinations a final team was selected for the Olympics 2012 qualifying tournament held in New Delhi this year. India gave a superlative performance in tournament and won all the lead matches comfortably before beating France in the final by 8-1 and qualified to participate in the London Olympics games 2012.

After qualifying for the London Olympics, Indian hockey team participated in a tournament (held to test the preparedness for the Olympics hockey tournament) where its performance was mixed. Later on the team went on to clinch bronze medal at Sultan Azlan Shah Hockey tournament at Ipoh, Malaysia. The Indian hockey team to represent India in the London Olympics has since been announced which will be skippered by goal keeper Bharat Chetri besides including star players like drag flickers and defenders Sandeep Singh and Raghunath ,mid fielders Gurbaz Singh and Sardar Singh. The forward line will consist of well known players such as Tushar Khandekar, Shivendra and S.V Sunil. The team appears to be a good mix of young and experienced players who have acquitted themselves creditably in recent times. There is no reason to believe that they will not be able to come up to the expectations of the hockey loving Indian masses.

While the tenacity and agility of the captain and goal keeper Bharat Chetri should serve the team well in defending the India's goals against the top most teams playing in the tournament, India has a world-class drag flicker in Sandeep Singh whose along the carpet drag flicks can stun even the best of goal keepers in the tournament . Even V. Raghunath is not far behind Sandeep Singh in this department. Sardar Singh as a pivot can hold his place in the best of teams and is expected to play a crucial role should the team qualify for semi-finals or final. The Indian hockey team in London Olympics 2012 also possesses lethal and opportunistic strikers in Shivendra and S.V Sunil if only they can get adequate support from the other forwards. It can be a glorious outing for the Indian hockey team once again in this edition of the Olympics and a feather in cap for the Australian coach of the Indian team Michael Nobbs. While it appears to be a far cry considering India's performance in the last 2-3 decades, the verve and the enthusiasm of the young Indian team may well make it a dream come true.

Last Updated on 8/6/2012