Hardik Singh: ‘Indian team has to improve on finishing skills and coordination’

The 22-year-old from Jalandhar attributed the team’s success at the recent tours of Argentina and Europe to the high-intensity training at the camp.

Indian team midfielder Hardik Singh believes the team's fighting spirit is one of the main reasons for its victory against Argentina.   -  BISWARANJAN ROUT

Following a successful tour of Argentina and Europe, Indian men’s hockey team midfielder Hardik Singh on Thursday said the national side needs to improve its finishing skills and work on the coordination to do well in the Olympics.

"I think we need to improve on our finishing. We should convert those chances we create in the opponent's D. We can also work on our coordination, which would help us control the game against our opponents," Hardik said in a release issued by Hockey India.

"We want to keep improving each and every day, and keep this momentum going by sticking to our daily training goals." Playing its first top international competition after a one-year hiatus, the Indian team won the first match via a penalty shoot-out, before registering a 3-0 win over host Argentina in the second game of the two-leg FIH pro league.

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The 22-year-old from Jalandhar attributed the team’s success at the recent tours of Argentina and Europe to the high-intensity training at the camp.

"The Argentina and Europe success are an outcome of high-intensity training, which we have been doing at the camp for one year," he said.

"We trained in such a way that it has kept us in that competitive frame of mind throughout. We have been creating match situations in our training, which I feel has really helped us during our tour."

The Indian team also secured 4-3, 4-4, 0-1 and 4-2 results in its practice matches, which it played against Argentina as a part of its preparations for the Olympic Games in July.

"I feel results of first two practice matches set the tone and helped us excel in the Pro League matches," Hardik said.

"I feel we didn't play good hockey in the first Pro League match, yet we won. It was all because of the resilience that the team showed during the match.

"This team has built that fighting spirit over the past few months, and that is one of the key reasons behind our successful Argentina as well as Europe tour. Moreover, we played as a unit, and that reflected on both the tours."