Doing well in Champions Trophy important: Sardar Singh

Bengaluru, May 3 (IANS) Ahead of the Champions Trophy, scheduled to begin on June 10 in London, India men’s hockey team captain Sardar Singh has said doing well against top sides in the competition will show where they stand in the lead-up to the Olympics.

The event which will be held at the Lee Valley Olympic venue in London will see India lock horns with world champions Australia, defending Olympic Gold medallists Germany, Great Britain, Belgium and South Korea.

“Doing well against each of these teams is important for us as it will show where we stand in the lead-up to the Olympics. It will give us an opportunity to test the latest weapons (tactics) we have been working on in the camp,” Sardar said here on Tuesday, a day after the selection trials were held to pick the squad for the forthcoming competition.

“We had many chances where we could have converted into goals against Australia and we didn’t. The Champions Trophy will give us an opportunity to correct those mistakes and assess where we need to further improve for the big games,” he said.

Speaking about the trials, the team’s head coach Roelant Oltmans said he is pleased with the team’s progress.

“The trials were interesting. The focus was on the tactical aspect of the game and I explained that to the selectors. We had two teams playing each other and I was pleased to see how they played and executed whatever we had planned. We have plans for every opponent and we try and keep it simple,” he said.

“I want the boys to be fresh and eager to win. That’s why we will give them a week’s rest in the third week of May. We will meet again here in Sports Authority of India (SAI) for a week before we leave for London in the first week of June,” Oltmans added.

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