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Hockey: Hosts India target opening win over England at World League Final

VR Raghunath said hosts India are looking for to beat England on Friday to boost spirits for the rest of the inaugural Hero World League Final in New Delhi. Photo: FIH / Grant Treeby.

VR Raghunath said hosts India are aiming to beat England on Friday to boost spirits for the rest of the inaugural Hero World League Final in New Delhi. Photo: FIH / Grant Treeby.

January 9, 2014: Hosts India have set their sights on winning their Hero World League Final opener on Friday against England in New Delhi, according to defender and penalty corner specialist VR Raghunath.

 

The inaugural Hero World League Final will be held at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium from January 10-18.

 

It will mark the first major competition for India under new head coach Terry Walsh, the Australian legend who took on the new job in October.

 

“This tournament is an ideal platform for us to work on our skill sets and loopholes before the World Cup,” said Raghunath, who spoke after a team training session at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium.

 

“Terry Walsh is working very hard on our game and we are feeling the improvement in that we’re playing in a synchronised manner. The team is looking at winning its first match against England and this will help boost our spirit going ahead in the tournament.”

 

As well as England, India’s rivals in Pool A are New Zealand and Germany, the world’s top-ranked side and reigning Olympic champions. Pool B consists of Australia, Netherlands, Belgium and Argentina.

 

Sardar Singh will again captain the squad, listed below.

 

India squad

No. Player (caps)                               Age (Born)     

3. Rupinder Singh (77)                       23 (11-11-1990)

7. Manpreet Singh (85)                       21 (26-06-1992)

8. Sardar Singh (C) (174)                   27 (15-07-1986)

10. Dharamvir Singh (63)                    23 (05-08-1990)

11. Mandeep Singh (28)                     18 (25-01-1995)

12. VR Raghunath (148)                     25 (01-11-1988)

13. Gurmail Singh (23)                        21 (30-12-1992)

15. SK Uthappa (42)                          23 (02-12-1990)

16. Sreejesh Raveendran (GK) (88) 25 (08-05-1988)

19. Nithin Thimmaiah (36)                   25 (08-12-1988)

22. Harbir Sandhu (30)                       23 (23-03-1990)

23. Thirumala Potunuri (GK) (12)        35 (05-05-1978)

24. Sunil Sowmarpet Vitalacharya (125)        24 (06-05-1989)

25. Aiyappa Mukkatira Bidappa (12) 22 (05-04-1991)

26. Birendra Lakra (59)                       23 (03-02-1990)

27. Akashdeep Singh (35)                  19 (02-12-1994)

29. Chinglensana Kangujam (42)       22 (02-12-1991)

32. Chandanda Thimmaiah (5)           22 (18-01-1991)

 

For more information, visit: www.fih.ch. For live streaming, visit www.youtube.com/fihockey

 

Source: FIH

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