Bengaluru: In the FIH Olympic Qualifiers, India women's hockey team will compete against World No. 13 the United States of America for a place in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. The draw involving 14 teams was held at the headquarters of the International Hockey Federation (FIH) in Lausanne, Switzerland, on Monday. The Indian Women's Hockey Team's Chief Coach Sjoerd Marijne said that by winning the FIH Women's Series Finals Hiroshima 2019 and the Olympic Test Event, the team has gained momentum at the right time.
"The team has been performing well in the last few months. We have gained momentum at the right time by winning the FIH Women's Series Finals Hiroshima 2019 and the Olympic Test Event," Hockey India quoted Marijne as saying."All the players are confident, very excited to take part in the FIH Olympic Qualifiers at home and they are charged up to achieve the team's goal. We are focusing on continuing the brilliant communication on the field and maintain our level of performance," he added.
India will also be playing a five-match series during their tour of England this month, which will serve as good preparation for the team. India captain Rani said that for them, the opponent does not matter as long as they are better prepared.
"I've always believed that the opponent we play does not matter as long as we are better prepared and that's been our focus. I understand there has been a lot of suspense over which team we might draw to play against in the Olympic Qualifiers but we didn't want to let it come in the way of our preparations," said Rani. "We knew the areas we had to work on to be in the best form to play two back-to-back matches. We are working towards winning them and qualifying for the Tokyo Olympics 2020," she added.