We have to live up to expectations now, says hockey player Savita Punia

Indian women’s hockey player Savita Punia said she had to live up to expectations and perform well in every tournament after her successful exit at the Tokyo Olympics last year. “Yes, nobody expected us to go beyond the quarter-finals at the Olympics. Many of our supporters thought we would reach the quarter-finals initially, but I don’t think anyone believed that we could win the quarter-finals. That zeal to win and not give up until the last second of the match was instilled by our coaching staff. We had to do it and we knew we were going to change the Tokyo scenario. “, she said.

“Having finished fourth in Tokyo, everyone noticed us. Before, there were only expectations from the men’s team. But now people expect the women to finish in the top spots too. top three in all the tournaments we play and that’s good for the sport,” added the experienced goalkeeper who will lead the Indian team in FIH Pro League matches in Europe ahead of the FIH Women’s World Cup which will begin in July. Speaking about the team’s preparations here in SAI, Bengaluru, for the Pro League and the World Cup, Savita said: “There is a lot of excitement ahead of the Pro League games in Europe as well as the World Cup. last time we went out in the quarter-finals but this time we will do our best to finish in the top 4.”

Having already faced the postponement of the Olympic Games which were rescheduled to 2021 due to the pandemic, the Indian team is once again facing the same situation where the Asian Games are postponed indefinitely. But Savita expressed her optimism, she said: “We will treat this postponement again as an opportunity to train and be better prepared for the Asian Games. The one-year postponement for the Olympics has given us given a lot of time to improve ourselves and personally for me, I was able to work closely with Janneke who had a big impact on my improvement as a goalkeeper.” (ANI)

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Catherine J. Martinez