The defending champions Delhi Waveriders are looking forward to face Dabang Mumbai at the Mahindra Hockey Stadium in Mumbai tomorrow at 1900HRS IST. The hosts are yet to claim their first victory in the Hockey India League.
The previous clash between both the teams proved to be fruitful for Delhi Waveriders who registered their first win in the League in Delhi with a 3-1 score. Delhi Waveriders clearly dominated the game in all four quarters not giving the opponent’s forwards any opportunity to get the better of them. Delhi Waveriders would like to maintain the same momentum against Dabang Mumbai. The hosts will now be looking at recording their first triumph amidst the home crowd.
Post his last match suspension, Sardar Singh will also be looking at coming back strongly in the match tomorrow along with Lloyd Norris-Jones whose first goal against Dabang Mumbai in the last match opened the winning note for Delhi Waveriders. The team will yet again look up to the duo to beat the defence of Dabang Mumbai. Young and agile Akashdeep Singh will also look at sneaking in the goals for his team. With three goals to his credit already in the League, Akashdeep will be aiming at adding further goal scores to his tally in the upcoming clash. While Rupinder Pal Singh and Simon Child will have their job cut out by cashing on the penalty corners and helping the team to score, all eyes will be on the South African goalie Rassie Pieterse, who through his brilliant saves in the last match, had strengthened the team’s position.
On the other hand, Dabang Mumbai will take this game as on opportunity to register their first win and rise in the points table. Coach Valentin Altenburg will look at his team giving its best and bouncing back in the League. What started as a promising team with their two draws against the mighty Jaypee Punjab Warriors and the in-form Ranchi Rays, the team has a formidable line-up but has been unable to cash on their strengths till now. Having just one goal to his name till now, Star player Tom Boon will aim at giving his best tomorrow and ensure that he keeps the opponent’s defence busy. The young Chinglensana, who had stunned the Jaypee Punjab Warriors through his two brilliant field goals in their opening match, will look at repeating a similar feat tomorrow for his team. All hope will again be set on the experienced Glenn Turner who in the opponent’s D gives moments of despair to the defence as everyone is aware of his strength to capitalise on opportunities in his team’s favour.
Aiming towards a successful victory, player Arjun Halappa, Dabang Mumbai said, “We just need one victory. We are playing well and we have had some good starts but the final scoreboard is yet to be in our favour. All the games we have played so far have been very close ones. Our team is aware of the mistakes made on the field but I have full confidence, we will come good. We have some great players in our team and it is just a matter of one win to bring us back in contention. We are looking forward to tomorrow’s game.”
Preparing the team for the upcoming match, Head Coach Dabang Mumbai Valentin Altenburg said, “The team is happy to come back in Mumbai and we look forward to another round of home support, crowd cheering and encouraging us right through. This will be our third game on the home turf and the crowd has been very supportive to us. Tomorrow’s match is not a revenge match but yes we have to play really well and we will give our best.”
Confident about putting a good show, Captain Sardar Singh, Delhi Waveriders said, “The previous clash with the opponent team was an exciting one and the victory boost the team’s confidence. Dabang Mumbai has a pool of talented players and we look forward to play the best on their home ground as well in order to maintain our position as a strong team in the league. We have analysed ourselves on the basis of the previous matches played and are focused towards delivering desired results.”
Speaking on the clash tomorrow, Head Coach Cedric D’Souza, Delhi Waveriders said, “The previous victory definitely has had a positive impact on the team and the players are constantly working on every aspect to leave no page unturned to mark another success. The current edition is significant for all the teams who are working hard, and therefore, we too have to prepare ourselves to reach a level where we can be confident about all the matches we play in the future.
Delhi Waveriders will play against Dabang Mumbai on 5 February 2015 at 1900 HRS IST at Mahindra Hockey Stadium, Mumbai. The match will be telecast LIVE on Star Sports.