Hockey camps begin to prepare for Youth Olympics qualifiers

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Agra, March 6 (IANS) The junior men’s and junior women’s national hockey camps began on Tuesday for the upcoming five-a-side Youth Olympic Games qualifiers which will be held in Bangkok between April 25-29.

The 40 campers will undergo close to seven weeks of laborious training under the guidance of their coaches here, Hockey India (HI) said.

The national camp is aimed at preparing these young players for the biggest tournament for them this year which is the Youth Olympic Games qualifiers. The campers will be ready for the five-day qualifiers which will be a tough test as the best teams from across Asia will be taking part in the tournament in Bangkok.

India’s hockey teams are eying their maiden appearance at the Youth Olympic Games. The 2018 edition will be held in Buenos Aires in October.

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HI High Performance Director David John said the players have been selected after impressing in the Sub Junior National Championships.

“One of the main criteria for their selection was also their age as the ones who are born between January 1, 2000 and December 31, 2003 have only been selected which is in accordance to the guidelines prescribed by FIH and Youth Olympic Games,” John said.

The campers:

Junior Men:

Goalkeepers: Sabyasachi Minz (Hockey Odisha), Tanuj Gulia (Hockey Haryana), Prashant Kumar Chauhan (Uttar Pradesh Hockey)

Defenders: Sukhjeet Singh (Hockey Chandigarh), Dinachandra Singh Moirangthem, Akshay Avasthi (Madhya Pradesh Hockey Academy), Sanjay (Hockey Chandigarh)

Midfielders: Rabichandra Singh Moirangthem (Manipur Hockey), Yashdeep Siwach (Hockey Haryana), Maninder Singh (Hockey Chandigarh), Neeraj Kumar Waribam (Manipur Hockey), Bharat Thakur (Hockey Punjab)

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Forwards: Sunny Malik (Hockey Haryana), Jai Prakash Patel (Steel Plant Sports Board), Mohd. Saif Khan (Sports Authority of India), Mohd. Alishan (Madhya Pradesh Hockey Academy), Shivam Anand (Uttar Pradesh Hockey), Rahul Kumar Rajbhar (Uttar Pradesh Hockey), Sudeep Chirmako (Hockey Gangpur-Odisha), Simranjot Singh (Hockey Punjab).

Junior Women:

Goalkeepers: Khushboo (Hockey Bhopal), Bichu Devi Kharibam (Madhya Pradesh Hockey Academy)

Defenders: Priyanka (Hockey Haryana), Salima Tete (Hokcey Jharkhand), Ishika Choudhary (Madhya Pradesh Hockey Academy), Neelam (Hockey Haryana)

Midfielders: Baljeet Kaur (Hockey Punjab), Jiwan Kishori Toppo (Hockey Gangpur-Odisha), Chetna Rathi (National Hockey Academy), Preeti (National Hockey Academy), Mitali (Hockey Punjab), Philicia Toppo (Hockey Gangpur-Odisha)

Forwards: Sangita Kumari (Hockey Jharkhand), Deepika Soreng (Hockey Jharkhand), Mumtaz Khan (Uttar Pradesh Hockey), Lal Rindiki (Hockey Mizoram), Reet (Hockey Haryana), Deepika (Hockey Haryana), Rutuja Pisal (Hockey Maharashtra), Rojita Kujur (Hockey Gangpur-Odisha).

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