Harjeet to lead junior hockey team at Australian tourney

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New Delhi, Sep 21 (IANS) Star defender Harjeet Singh will lead the Indian junior mens hockey team at the star-studded Australian Hockey League (AHL) which starts in Perth on September 29.

Dipsan Tirkey will be the vice-captain of the team. Defender Vikas Dahiya, who was a member of the senior Indian team at the Rio Olympics, is also in the team.

The strong defence line-up will include Varun Kumar, Gurinder Singh and Vikramjit Singh, while Nilakanta Sharma, Harjeet Singh, Santa Singh, Sumit and Manpreet will form the midfield.

The forward line will be spearheaded by the talented Mandeep Singh who produced a series of excellent performances for the senior national team at the FIH Champions Trophy earlier this year. Armaan Qureshi, Gurjant Singh, Parvinder Singh, Simranjeet Singh and Ajit Kumar Pandey are the other membres of the forward line.

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This will be the first time teams from India, Malaysia and New Zealand will feature in the Australian Hockey League.

There will be 12 teams in the tournament including defending champions Queensland, Northern Territory, South Australia, Western Australia, Australian Capital Territory, Victoria, New South Wales, Tasmania, Malaysian Tigers, Malaysian Blues and New Zealand Futures.

As Australia’s premier domestic hockey tournament, the AHL sees a wide range of top class athletes, including players from the senior Australian team compete for their home state or territory.

“Ahead of the upcoming Junior World Cup to be held in India in December 2016, this is will a very good exposure event for our boys. This is the first time we have been invited for the AHL and we hope to make the best use of the opportunity,” Indian junior team coach Harendra Singh said.

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The squad:

Goalkeepers: Vikas Dahiya, Krishan Pathak

Defenders: Varun Kumar, Dipsan Tirkey (vice-captain), Gurinder Singh, Vikramjit Singh, Anand Lakra

Midfielders: Nilakanta Sharma, Harjeet Singh (captain), Santa Singh, Sumit, Manpreet Singh

Forwards: Armaan Qureshi, Gurjant Singh, Mandeep Singh, Parvinder Singh, Simranjeet Singh, Ajit Kumar Pandey



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