New Delhi, June 6: Just days before leaving for the Hockey World League semis in Antwerp, Belgium, the Indian hockey team has suffered string of injuries.
New coach Paul Van Ass has dismissed the team's new style of play, which has players playing the equivalent of a full court press, leading to the injuries.
Drag flicker VR Raghunath has picked up a hamstring injury that would take 10 days to heal, ruling him out of the tournament.
Earlier, striker SV Sunil and midfielder Kothajit Singh had to be dropped from the 18 man squad because of injury. Another midfielder Gurbaj Singh had suffered a fractured nose after being hit by ball, but is fit to play.
"Yeah we are doing okay. Though we could not take all the players which we initially selected. Sunil may not be there, he is injured. Kothajit is injured. And Raghunath is also injured. Raghunath will also be replaced by Rupinder Pal. So, that not a problem as that the system, that always happens in high performance environment. But, that's too bad for the boys especially", said Paul Van Ass, Indian coach.
Talking about the injuries, skipper Sardar Singh assured that the replacement to the injured players are also in good knick.
"Yes definitely because we have too many injuries. But the good thing is that we want to try all our players in this tournament. And the players who have come as a replacement are also performing very well. So we do hope for a good result", said Indian hockey captain Sardar Singh.
Looking to capitalize on this opportunity would be drag flicker Rupinder Pal Singh. Singh, who was dropped from the initial selection, but is now preparing himself for the tournament.
"I am all mentally prepared. According to training I was all mentally prepared but wasn’t prepared for the tournament. But the decision that the coach has taken I am all mentally prepared for that", said Dal Flicker Rupinder Pal Singh.
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