Ranchi Rays retain skipper Ashley Jackson

Jackson, who has been retained for 95,000 US dollars, led his team from the front and scored 12 goals to help the Rays clinch the trophy last season. The skipper was also the Player of the Tournament.

Ashley Jackson led his team from the fron in the previous edition of HIL.   -  Akhilesh Kumar

Hockey India League (HIL) defending champions Ranchi Rays have retained their skipper Ashley Jackson among others ahead of the fourth edition of the tournament beginning on January 18.

Jackson, who has been retained for 95,000 US dollars, led his team from the front and scored 12 goals to help the Rays clinch the trophy last season. The skipper was also the Player of the Tournament.

Defenders Birendra Lakra and Kothajit Singh are the other major retentions for the Ranchi-based team. Ranchi Rays will play their first match against Jaypee Punjab Warriors in a rematch of last edition’s final.

The defending champions have also brought Indian midfielder Manpreet Singh, who is expected to play alongside Jackson. Manpreet will be accompanied by junior team star Vikramjit Singh.

“We have a combination which worked the last time. We have gathered players who have played together for a long time with the ability to play at various positions. We will just stick to our task and try and play a tight game,” said coach Clarence Lobo.