Former Indian hockey captain Bharat Chettri has said that the country had fielded a good team at the 2012 London Olympics but unfortunately it failed to put up a good performance, finishing last.

The former India goalkeeper said during an interaction with Hockey India that after the disappointment of not qualifying for the 2008 Beijing Olympics, he was very excited about leading the team in London.

“The year 2008 was a sad one for us as we couldn’t qualify for the Olympics, so when we qualified for the 2012 Olympics, it was a great feeling. It felt really good to go to London. However, the Indian team couldn’t find its groove and finished last in the competition.”

The former captain said that India had a good set of players, but they couldn’t produce the “necessary performances”.

“We had a good team in the 2012 Olympics, but we couldn’t put up the performances that were required. We played well against the Netherlands in our first match, even though we lost 2-3. We should have taken our game to the next level in the rest of the matches, but we couldn’t do that. Once we lost the second game against New Zealand, we couldn’t find a way to improve our game,” said Chettri.

The former goalkeeper added that things could’ve been slightly different if India had at least drawn their first match against the Netherlands.

“If we would’ve at least drawn our first game against the Netherlands, then things could’ve been different for us. If we drew that game, then our confidence would’ve been up. We had chances to win that game as well. The first game was very important for us wherein we couldn’t put in the necessary performance.”

Asked about the current Indian men’s and women’s teams’ chances in Tokyo, Chettri said, “Both the teams are very good. They have put in good performances in the recent past. I think we have a great chance to stand on the podium in Tokyo. The players are very fit as well.”

–IANS

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