Indian defender Sushila Chanu Pukhrambam completes 150 international caps
New Delhi, Jun 14 (PTI) Indian defender and former captain Sushila Chanu Pukhrambam completed 150 international caps for the country when India faced Spain in the second game of the five-match series.
The Manipur defender has been an integral part of the Indian team since making her debut in the Test Series against New Zealand in Christchurch in 2009 when she was 17.
Sushila took up hockey at the age of 11 when she joined the Posterior Hockey Academy in Manipur.
The 26-year-old then shifted to the Madhya Pradesh Women Hockey Academy in 2007, when she developed into a great prospect for the national team, making her junior international debut at the Under-21 Asia Cup held in Malaysia in 2008.
The highly-rated defender went on to win the silver medal at the 6th Junior Women Asia Cup in Thailand and featured in the senior team's gold medal winning campaign at the FIH World League Round 2 held in New Delhi in 2013.
She was then selected to captain the Indian team which won the bronze at the 2013 FIH Junior World Cup in Germany.
Sushila's meteoric rise saw her become a regular fixture in the senior team post the tournament.
She has since represented the country in various tournaments including the Asia Cup 2013, Asia Cup 2017 when India won the gold, 17th Asian Games where the team won the bronze, 2014 and 2018 editions of the Commonwealth Games, and most importantly the 2016 Rio Olympics where she captained the team which had qualified for the Games after 36 years.
"I had always dreamed of representing the country at least once in my lifetime, but to have put on the national team colours 150 times, it makes me a very proud citizen of the country," said Sushila ahead of the match in Madrid yesterday.
"It's been a memorable journey with the Indian team and I hope I can contribute to the growth of the team and bring laurels to the nation in the future," Sushila added