New Delhi: The excitement among the Indian U-18 Men and Women's Hockey Team was palpable as they assembled at the Indira Gandhi International Airport to leave for the Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games on Tuesday.
This is the first time an Indian Team will be participating in Hockey at the Youth Olympic Games and the anticipation and confidence was evident on the faces of the young hockey stars.
While the Indian U-18 Women's Team grouped in Pool A will begin their campaign on 7 October 2018 against Austria, the Indian U-18 Men's Hockey Team grouped in Pool B will begin their campaign on the same day against Bangladesh. The two teams were based in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh for their preparatory camp.
"We have had good preparations ahead of the Youth Olympic Games and it helps that almost every player in the nine-member squad have played at the Hockey India Senior National five-a-side tournament in the past years which has given them a good understanding of the unpredictable nature of the game. As a team we are confident of good results and we will give it our all," said Baljeet Singh Saini, Coach of the Indian U-18 Women's Team.
Meanwhile, Kariappa assigned as Coach for the Indian U-18 Men's Hockey Team said the preparations have put the team in good stead to perform well at the prestigious event.
"We have left no stone unturned in our preparations and hence we are confident of a good show. This tournament will be critical in setting up the right base for the players and they are aware that the exposure and good result from this tournament will propel their international careers. Having said that, at the tournament, we will take one match at a time and we need to ensure we get off to a good start," he stated. (UNI)