It is an outcome of teamwork, says Savita after third FIH Women’s Goalkeeper of the Year Award 2023 nomination

Savita has won the FIH Women’s Goalkeeper of the Year Award for two consecutive times in 2021 and 2022.

Published : Nov 20, 2023 12:57 IST , Bengaluru - 2 MINS READ

Indian women’s hockey team captain Savita Punia.
Indian women’s hockey team captain Savita Punia. | Photo Credit: BISWARANJAN ROUT

Indian women’s hockey team captain Savita Punia. | Photo Credit: BISWARANJAN ROUT

Indian women’s hockey team goalkeeper Savita, who won the FIH Goalkeeper of the Year Awards in 2021 and 2022, has been nominated for the third consecutive time in the same category at this year’s FIH Hockey Stars Awards.

Savita said, “I never thought I would win this award for two straight years, and get nominated yet again. I feel really great, and it’s a proud moment for me, my family and my teammates as well. When I started playing, I never thought I would come this far, and it is all due to the support of my family and my teammates.”

“In team sport, no achievement is based on individual efforts but is an outcome of teamwork. It’s great to be recognised for your hard work, and it motivates the entire team,” she added.

READ | National Men’s Hockey Championship: Tamil Nadu reaches quarters; Haryana, Odisha win big

One of the most influential figures in the current set-up, Savita has led India to various important wins in recent years, which includes the title win at the inaugural FIH Women’s Nations Cup 2022 in Spain that helped India earn promotion to the FIH Pro League 2023-24.

She then led the team to the bronze medal win at the Asian Games 2022 followed by the title win at the recently held Women’s Asian Champions Trophy 2023. Under her captaincy, India also achieved their best-ever world rankings (No. 6 with 2368.83 points).

Reflecting on the season, Savita said, “It has been an amazing season for us. I’m just proud of how we overcame the obstacles that were thrown our way. We’ve gotten better with each game. Even the younger players have shown great tenacity; they have worked hard and given their all.”

With the focus pinned on the upcoming Hockey Olympic Qualifier 2024, the Indian women’s team will be aiming for a top-three finish at the tournament to secure their qualification for the prestigious Paris 2024 Olympics. The tournament is scheduled to be held in Ranchi from 13th to 19th January.

India is placed in Pool B alongside New Zealand, the United States, and Italy. Pool A consists of Germany, Japan, Chile, and the Czech Republic. The top two teams from each group will then progress to the semifinal, and the top three finishing teams will secure their qualification for the Paris Olympics.

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