Important to stay in the rhythm, says Chief Coach Sjoerd Marijne
Bhubaneswar, 16 October 2019: With just two weeks remaining for the all-important FIH Hockey Olympic Qualifiers Odisha in Bhubaneswar to be held on 1st and 2nd November 2019, the Indian Women’s Hockey Team are leaving no stone unturned in their final preparations for the best of two matches against a formidable USA side.
This is the first time the Indian Women’s Team will be playing at the iconic Kalinga Stadium and their eagerness and excitement to experience the electrifying atmosphere often created by the hockey-crazy spectators here is palpable. Rani, the team’s skipper said, “We have been looking forward to play here for a long time now. This is a dream come true moment for many of us and we thoroughly enjoyed our first session of training at the Kalinga Stadium on Monday. We are hopeful hockey lovers from this region will come to support us in our quest to make the qualification for 2020 Tokyo Olympics.”
In a bid to give his team a feel of the home conditions and atmosphere, Chief Coach Sjoerd Marijne has emphasised on the two high-intensity practice sessions which take place on 19th and 26th October at the Kalinga Stadium, where fans will get the chance to watch the girls play live, and perhaps even get to meet their favourite stars. “At this stage, it is important to tick all the boxes to make sure we have done everything that we could to be at our best for the FIH Hockey Olympic Qualifiers Odisha,” Marijne said.
“I want the athletes to have an idea of the kind of atmosphere they will be playing in on match days. We have opened two of our training sessions on Saturdays in the lead up to the event, so that the players can get a feel of the environment here and it will also give the fans an opportunity to show their support for the Indian Women’s Team,” stated Marijne.
Speaking about the next two weeks in Bhubaneswar where the women’s team is training, Marijne said, “We built a good rhythm during our tour to England where the matches against Great Britain was challenging and it was also an enriching experience – much needed ahead of the important qualifiers. I think we are in that perfect rhythm at the moment and I want the players to build on this momentum. We are training one session every day and I am quite happy with the energy and confidence the girls are showing.”
The Indian Women’s Team will have open training sessions on 19th and 26th October 2019 from 1730 - 1900hrs IST. These practice sessions will be open for the public in order to give the local support the opportunity to watch their Women's team's players live in action before the FIH Hockey Olympic Qualifiers Odisha.
The Indian Men's Hockey team will be vying for an Olympic berth when they take on Russia in the crucial FIH Olympic Qualifiers to be held on November 1 and 2 at the iconic Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar. For the very first time, the Indian Women's Hockey team too will be playing in front of the hockey-loving people of Odisha when they take on USA in the FIH Olympic Qualifiers at the Kalinga Stadium on November 1 and 2. The excitement among the teams is palpable and they are working towards peaking at this important event. Having represented India at the Rio Olympics after 36 years, the women's team will be aiming to take part in their second consecutive Olympics in the history of Indian hockey and they are confident of making history. Make sure you witness history unfold at the Kalinga Stadium by booking your tickets.