The Spanish men’s hockey team on Monday touched down in Bhubaneswar, Odisha to play a double-legged FIH Pro League tie, scheduled to take place on February 26 and 27 at the Kalinga Stadium.
Expressing happiness at the prospect of playing India, Spanish captain Marc Miralles said, “We are happy to be in India and really excited to play at one of the most iconic hockey stadiums in the world. We can’t wait to play against the home side, and are hopeful of putting up a show that people will enjoy in the two matches.”
Having lost both their opening matches against England earlier this month, the world No. 9 Spanish side will look to register their first wins of the Pro League season when they take on the home side over the weekend.
Speaking about the team’s approach for the matches, Spain’s head coach Max Caldas said, “We are not too concerned about the losses against England. We have just started, we’ve played only two matches, so I wouldn’t put too much emphasis on winning or losing yet. We were really competitive in our opening matches, and will try to play our brand of hockey against India.”
Miralles added, “Despite the losses, I think there were a lot of things that we did great. So hopeful of learning from our mistakes and improving on them. We need the first wins in this Pro League season, so we keep having faith in the way we trained, and what our coach is telling us to do.”
Speaking about the team’s preparedness, the Spanish skipper said that they have been training for the past couple of weeks and are ready for the challenge.
“These past couple of weeks, we’ve been training a lot, we’ve seen a lot of games. We know how the Indian team plays, we know their physicality and skills, so yeah we want to stay focused on the matches and we’re ready for the challenge. I think we’ll be having an interesting series against India and hopefully, we’ll win against them,” added Miralles.