For the upcoming Asian Champions Trophy going to be held on October 29, Vandana Kataria, who plays forward, has been chosen to lead the Indian women’s hockey team. And defender Sunita Lakra hs been selected as the vice-captain of the side, which was headed by Sushila Chanu during Rio Olympics.
Chanu has been excluded from captainship now. The tournament will have China, Korea, Malaysia and defending champion Japan apart from India. To counter these teams, the Indian team consists of two goalkeepers, five forwards, six mid-fielders and five defenders.
“Though the Olympics could have ended better for the girls, they are high on confidence as they got to see what it really takes to play at the highest level and are vying to showcase top quality hockey during the Asian Champions Trophy,” said chief coach Neil Hawgood, reported by Indian Express.
The two goalkeepers are Savita and Rajani Etimarpu. Five defenders are Deep Grace Ekka, Renuka Yadav, Sunita Lakra, Hnialum Lal Ruat Feli and Namita Toppo. Five midfielders are Nikki Pradhan, Navjot Kaur, Monika, Rani, Deepika and Navdeep Kaur. And lastly, five forwards are Poonam Rani, Anuradha Devi Thokchom, Vandana Katariya, Preeti Dubey and Punam Barla.
Vandana felt elated to become the captain of the team as they are a “great bunch”. She even mentioned about Rio saying that it was great experience, but also that there is a lot to improve for the team. This specific tournament, she believes, will make the team understand better where the team stands and how they can improve their game as a team as well as individually.
Picture credit- SportingIndia