India: Battle for a berth to Paris 2024 begins on Saturday

~The Indian Women’s Hockey Team will vie to make their third consecutive Olympic qualification~

Ranchi, 12 January 2024: The battle to earn a berth for Paris Olympics begins tomorrow, with the FIH Hockey Olympic Qualifiers Ranchi 2024 kicking off in Ranchi, Jharkhand at the Marang Gomke Jaipal Singh Astro Turf on Saturday. The eight teams in the fray include world no.5 Germany, Japan, Chile and Czech Republic in Pool A while hosts India are clubbed in Pool B with New Zealand, United States and Italy. Only the top 3 teams in the tournament will make the qualification cut. 

Vying for their third consecutive Olympic berth, the Savita-led Indian Women’s Hockey Team are optimistic about their chances. Going into the tournament as the second highest ranked team, the hosts will be riding on some significant performances in recent times, namely the Asian Champions Trophy where they avenged their loss to China in the Semi-Finals of the 19th Asian Games Hangzhou. “We are ready for the tournament. The entire team understands that this is the first step towards the Paris Olympics dream. We have worked on ourselves as an individual and as a team. Our focus will be on our own strength, and not worry too much about what the opponents will bring to the table,” asserted a confident Captain Savita. 

The Indian side will begin their campaign with a match against the United States on Saturday. The Indian team had defeated the US in the 2019 Olympic Qualifiers and will be looking to repeat that performance this time too. “There will be pressure when we take on the USA. No doubt, they are a good side. But as I have always said, there is pressure in every match and every tournament, this is no different. We have worked on ourselves mentally and have worked on how to overcome difficult situations in the match,” stated Savita. 

Speaking about the pressure to qualify for the Olympics, Chief Coach Janneke Schopman said, “The Olympics is the biggest tournament, so of course there will be pressure. Every team here wants to qualify for the Olympics and the team is aware of the challenges they will face but as Savita said, the team is well-prepared and playing in Ranchi is an advantage. We saw how much they rallied behind the team when the Asian Champions Trophy was held here, I believe their support will count this time too. If our team plays to our potential, I know we stand a sure shot to qualify.” 

The Indian Team will take on the United States in their opening match on 13th January, followed by a match against New Zealand on 14th January. After a day’s rest, India will play Italy on 16th January while the Semi-Finals will be held on 18th and the Final on 19th January.

On 13th January India will take on USA at 1930 hrs. 

Matches will be live on Sports18 / Jio Cinema.

By Hockey India

Like this article?

Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Share on Linkdin
Share on Pinterest

Leave a comment

SanFair Newsletter

The latest on what’s moving world – delivered straight to your inbox
Verified by MonsterInsights