The Hockey India on Saturday announced the pruned list of 32 probables (women’s team) for the Olympic Qualifying Tournament, leaving out 16 players from the first list. The qualifying tournament will be held in Majoy Dhyan Chand National Stadium, New Delhi, from February 18 and the participating teams include South Africa, Italy, Canada, Ukraine and Poland.
The selectors – Olympians Col. Balbir Singh, BP Govinda, Syed Ali and Rekha Bhide alongwith the government observers Harbinder Singh and Dilip Tirkey – watched the recently concluded four-match Test series against Azerbaijan before selecting the 32 probables from 48 current campers.
Saba Anjum and Chanchan Devi (who is returning from an injury) are the notable exclusions from the probables. While Joydeep Kaur comes back after recovering from an injury, which she sustained during Australia tour of team India in 2011.
India blanked Azerbaijan in the Test series. According Hockey India release, “This reduced group of players will continue in the coaching camp for the preparations of the Olympic qualifiers. The final list of 18 players and standbyes will be announced early next month.”
Results of India-Azerbaijan Test Series:
1st Test: India Won 3-0 (Scorers: Anuradha Devi (19th minute), Soundarya (51st) and Joydeep Kaur (62nd))
2nd Test: India Won 2-1 (Scorers: Ritu Rani (18th minute) and Saba Anjum (41th); AZR: Gyeonga Kim (23rd))
3rd Test: India Won 3-0 (Scorers: Sushila Chanu (3rd minute), Anuradha Devi (22nd) and Ritu Rani (67th))
4th Test: India Won 2-0 (Scorers: Jaspreet Kaur (44th minute) and Rani Rampal (68th))
Goalkeepers: Yogita Bali, Savita, Rajani Etimarpu and Sukhmani Virk.
Defenders: Jaspreet Kaur, Joydeep Kaur, Subhadra Pradhan Pinki Devi and Preeti Sunila Kiro.
Midfielders: P Sushila Chanu, Asunta Lakra, Kirandeep Kaur, Deepika, Ritu Rani, Mukta Parva Barla, M N Ponnamma, Namita Toppo, Anju Dhiman, Reena Rathor and Kiran Dahiya.
Forwards: Poonam Rani, Vandana Kataria, Rani, Soundarya Yendala, Anuradha Devi, Rosaline Dung Dung, Jaspreet Kaur, Anupa Barla, Lily Chanu, Deep Grace Ekka, Apoorva Viswakarma and Lilima Minz.
Photo by: www.mncaphoto.com Matías Noé Correa Arce