Good to be back in the Games Village after years: Ignace Tirkey

Ignace Tirkey is looking ahead for good games

Ignace Tirkey is looking ahead for good games

2010 Padmashree Awardee, Ignace Tirkey feels good to be back in the games village after 6 long years. Last time, he experienced the environment of the games village when he captained the Indian Men’s Hockey team in Melbourne for the Commonwealth Games 2006. He missed the 2010 Commonwealth and Asian Games due to injury. Sandeep Singh and Ignace Tirkey are the only two members of current squad who represented India at the Athens Olympics in 2004.

India’s most experienced Hockey Player at London Olympics, Ignace told, “Current team has a good team spirit and works as a unit. The team is encouraged to put up their best efforts in the Olympics.” For the former captain of India, who plays for Services/Army in domestic circuit, reaching the podium is the target at Riverbank Arena. Continue reading →

Spain beat India 2-1 in the 2nd test of Santander series

The Spanish team defeated India (2-1) in the second test match at Santander as both teams are in final stage of preparations for the London Games. Sandeep Singh (Penalty corner 28th minute) scored the solitary goal for India, while Spain registered goals through Pau Quemada (34th minute) and Santi Freixa (Penalty corner 69th minute).

Ignace Tirkey

File Photo: Ignace Tirkey, who marked 250th International Cap

After drawing first test (3-3) against World Number 5 side spain, India continued to play a fast and attacking game. And took lead through the penalty corner goal by ace drag flicker Sandeep Singh in 28th minute.

Uncomfortable on the field Spain managed to level the score (1-1) through Pau Quemada’s field  goal which turned the tied. The hosts took possession of the ball and set up the tempo of game after the lemon break. The Skipper of Spain, Santi Freixa converted a penalty in the 69th minute to win the game for his team to avoid second consecutive draw. Continue reading →

Two new additions in the 22-member Squad for Europe tour

Goalkeeper Bharat Chetri has been retained captain and Sardar Singh will continue as vice-captain of 22 member Indian hockey squad for the upcoming European tour, which will see the debut of Nitin Thimmaiah and Pradhan Somanna . During the tour, India will play test matches against France, Spain and South Africa followed by a three-nation (Great Britain, India and Spain) invitational tournament in Spain.

Gurvinder Singh Chandi

Gurvinder Singh Chandi returns after missing the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup

Yuvraj Walmiki who replaced Gurvinder Singh Chandi for the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup, is dropped as Chandi returns. Experienced Ignace Tirkey is back in team after he was rest, while Chinglensana Singh makes the cut after missing out the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup.

The three-nation tournament involving Great Britain, India and hosts Spain will be played on the blue artificial turf with yellow kookaburra balls.

India will play a total of eight matches during the three week long France and Spain tour, which are expected to help the team to acclimatise to the European conditions and will be last outing before they play in Olympics at Riverbank Arena, London. Continue reading →

Halappa, Chhikara and Khandekar back in the Team, Chetri named Captain

Ace drag-flicker Sandeep Singh, mid-fielders Sardar Singh, Arjun Halappa, Bharat Chhikara and forward Tushar Khandekar,  have been recalled in the 22-member India squad for Australia tour which will be lead by Bharat Chetri while veteran Ignace Tirkey has been named his vice. India will play in the Four Nation 9-a-side Lanco International Super Series and a tri-series involving Arch Rival Pakistan and hosts Australia.

Ignace Tirkey (VC), Bharat Chetri (Captain) with Raghunath and Vikramkanth during a National Camp

Ignace Tirkey (VC), Bharat Chetri (Captain) with Raghunath and Vikram Kanth during a National Camp

Sandeep and Sardar had missed Asian Champions Trophy, because they were slapped with the ban of two-years by Hockey India, after they had left the national camp citing personal reasons, and are back after their ban was revoked. While Arjun Halappa, Bharat Chhikara and Tushar Khandekar had been out of the action because of injuries. For the details of the 9-a-side format  International Super Series which features nine players per side and is played on the normal dimension field with an additional one metre wider goal and a player in the attacking half at all times, visit this page and launch video here.

Goalkeepers: Bharat Chetri (captain), P.R. Sreejesh;
Defenders: Manjit Kullu, Rupinderpal Singh, V.R. Raghunath, Sandeep Singh;
Midfielders: Ignace Tirkey (vice-captain), Gurbaj Singh, Vikas Sharma, Manpreet Singh, Vikram Pillay, Arjun Halappa, Sardar Singh;
Forwards: Danish Mujtaba, Ravi Pal, Sarvanjit Singh, Rajpal Singh, Yuvraj Valmiki, S.V. Sunil, Gurvinder Singh Chandi, Tushar Khandker, Bharat Chhikara

Standbys:Nanak Singh (goalkeeper), Birendra Lakra (midfielder), Mandip Antil (forward), Chinglingsana (forward), Roshan Minz (forward)

Schedule: Continue reading →