New Delhi: Having registered convincing wins in warm-up games against the A team, the Indian men’s hockey outfit will be high on confidence as it prepares to take on New Zealand at Nelson tomorrow.
The last time they played each other was in the Hero Hockey World league Final 2014 here and it was the Black Sticks who came out triumphant. While New Zealand will have the edge in terms of playing in front of their home crowd, India, with two wins in their kitty, will be upbeat and will aim to continue their form in the upcoming clashes. The Indian team has already proved it is hungry to win and understand the value of an early goal. With this in mind the team will hope that it manages to sneak in the opponents’ D early and get the scorecard ticking.
With S K Uthappa, Akashdeep Singh, S V Sunil leading the charge it will not be a surprise if they yet again pull off a victory. Speaking about the game, chief coach and high performance director Roelant Oltmans said, “The last two matches were good learning for us and in a way has got us familiar to the conditions here. What is working in our favour is the field goals and which in a way showcases the team’s ability to break the defence chain to enter the opponents’ D and even our coordination during those few seconds. This is a good sign and I hope we continue this. Also from here we will aim to get more penalty corners and convert them.”