Take the pledge to vote

For a better tommorow#AajSawaroApnaKal
  • I agree to receive emails from News18

  • I promise to vote in this year's elections no matter what the odds are.
  • Please check above checkbox.

    SUBMIT

Thank you for
taking the pledge

Vote responsibly as each vote counts
and makes a diffrence

Disclaimer:

Issued in public interest by HDFC Life. HDFC Life Insurance Company Limited (Formerly HDFC Standard Life Insurance Company Limited) (“HDFC Life”). CIN: L65110MH2000PLC128245, IRDAI Reg. No. 101 . The name/letters "HDFC" in the name/logo of the company belongs to Housing Development Finance Corporation Limited ("HDFC Limited") and is used by HDFC Life under an agreement entered into with HDFC Limited. ARN EU/04/19/13618
LIVE TV DownloadNews18 App
News18 English
News18 » Hockey
2-min read

Beating Belgium and Finishing as Group Winners Will be Key, Says High Performance Director David John

Weighing under a sea of expectations to regain the title after 43 years, India will have to top their pool to have a realistic chance of breaking their World Cup jinx, said High Performance Director David John on Thursday.

PTI

Updated:November 22, 2018, 8:00 PM IST
facebookTwitterskypewhatsapp
Beating Belgium and Finishing as Group Winners Will be Key, Says High Performance Director David John
David John. (Image: Twitter)

New Delhi: Weighing under a sea of expectations to regain the title after 43 years, India will have to top their pool to have a realistic chance of breaking their World Cup jinx, said High Performance Director David John on Thursday.

Ranked fifth, India are placed in Pool C alongside current Olympic silver medallist and world no. 3 Belgium, South Africa and Canada.

John said India will need to beat Belgium in the pool stages to avoid cross-over round and directly qualify for the quarterfinals to enhance their chances.

"We have a very balanced team and conditions are also in our favour. There is tremendous expectations from us and we know that. But we need to top our pool. We need to beat Belgium and avoid cross-overs," John said.

India will open their campaign against South Africa on November 28 before squaring off against Belgium and Canada on October 2 and October 8 respectively.

Citing the example of the women's World Cup where India had to play the cross-overs after finishing third in their pool, the exercise physiologist-turned High Performance Director said an extra game plays a big part in such a long tournament.

In the women's hockey World Cup held in London earlier this year, India entered the quarterfinals via the cross-over route but failed to cross the last-eight hurdle, losing to Ireland in penalty shoot-off.

"Take the example of our women's team, we made the quarterfinals after winning our cross-over match but that extra match drained our girls. That extra match will always take a toll on the fitness of the players," said the Australian.

"So we need to avoid cross-overs and win against Belgium."

Only last month, John was dropped from the men's senior selection panel for showing "bias" against some senior players and preferring juniors, but the Hockey India selectors seemed to have heeded to some extent to the Australian's views while selecting the World Cup side.

Hockey India named a relatively mixed team for the World Cup, leaving out senior players like Rupinder Pal Singh, SV Sunil and Ramandeep Singh.

Even though he was not part of the selection panel, John seemed quite satisfied with the squad.

"It's not a young team, it's a mixture of youth and experience. We now have depth in the side. We don't have Rupinder but Varun (Kumar) is there to take his place. Dilpreet (Singh) has come of age in the absence of Ramandeep. So we now have the bench strength," John said.

"Rupinder is not fit. He suffered an injury on his knee during the camp and is not 100 per cent fit. Same goes with Ramandeep. The closest to retain full fitness was Sunil," he added.

Veteran midfielder Sardar Singh, who announced his retirement after the Asian Games, has blamed John and former coach Sjoerd Marijne for his sudden decision to quit.

Asked about the accusation, John only said: "We need to look forward and create adequate bench strength keeping in mind 2020 Olympics."

Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox - subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow News18.com on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what's happening in the world around you – in real time.

| Edited by: Arjit Dabas
Read full article
Next Story
Next Story

Also Watch

facebookTwitterskypewhatsapp

Live TV

Countdown To Elections Results
To Assembly Elections 2018 Results