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Indian Men’s Hockey Team is Confident, Has Quality Players to Shine in World Cup: Dilip Tirkey

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Last Updated: December 22, 2022, 15:22 IST

Indian men’s hockey team (HI)

Dilip Tirkey feels the Indian hockey team has quality players to reclaim the FIH World Cup after a gap of 47 years

Legendary defender Dilip Tirkey believes the current Indian hockey team has quality players who can reclaim the world title after a gap of 47 years.

India won their only World Cup in 1975 at Kuala Lumpur.

Being the hosts, the upcoming edition in January next year provides a great opportunity to India to finish on the podium. The World Cup will be hosted by Bhubaneswar and Rourkela from January 13 to 29.

“The current Indian men’s team is a very confident unit and the performances they have been giving in recent years have made the fans really happy. I am confident they will do well in the World Cup,” said Tirkey, who is also the Hockey India president.

“I want them to put their best foot forward and play with confidence. The team has quality players.”

Tirkey, a former India captain who was part of the 1998 Asian Games gold medal-winning side, represented India in three World Cups and as many Olympics.

The 45-year-old said donning the national jersey in World Cups and the Olympics was his ultimate dream.

“I played my first World Cup in 1998. It was a matter of immense pride for me that I was part of the World Cup team,” said Tirkey, a recipient of the Padma Shri Award in 2004.

“Captaining the Indian team was a good experience, no doubt, and we played some good hockey as well. I was captain at an Olympics, World Cup and even an Asian Games, and it was definitely a very proud experience.”

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