Indian women qualify for Hockey World Cup

The Indian team is currently in Japan for the Asia Cup and while a title here would give bigger bragging rights to the team, the pressure to win has now been lifted.

The Indian women's hockey team qualified for the 2018 World Cup. The women last played the World Cup in 2010, missing out on the 2014 edition.   -  AFP

The Indian women's hockey team qualified for the 2018 World Cup after South Africa won the Africa Cup of Nations on Sunday.

The Indian team is currently in Japan for the Asia Cup and while a title here would give bigger bragging rights to the team, the pressure to win has now been lifted. India finished eighth at the Hockey World League Semifinals in Johannesburg earlier this year and its qualification for the marquee event, to be held in London, was dependent on the other continental events going its way.

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“Yes we are happy and the girls are happy too but I had already told them that there was 99 percent chance of us qualifying since there is hardly any challenge for South Africa at continental level. But we do not want to just make up the numbers at the World Cup. Also, a lot of people said India went to Olympics because of other results going its way. If we win Asia Cup, we will be going as continental champions and deserving of a spot among the best 16 in the world,” coach Harendra Singh told Sportstar from Kakamigahara.

Indian women last played the World Cup in 2010, missing out on the 2014 edition.