Bhubaneswar :Indian men’s hockey team captain Manpreet Singh opined that team’s ‘unity’ has been the major reason behind historic bronze medal win at the Tokyo Olympics.
“The team unity was one of the biggest reasons behind our Olympics success. You know the biggest positive of all this was that we as a team came very closer, and it really helped us during the Olympics,” said Manpreet.
“Faith among each other was something that made the team atmosphere very positive, and it motivated us to give our best on the field.”
Speaking about the glorious year filled with ups and downs, the 29-year-old player said that 2021 was full of challenges but he felt proud the way team overcame the obstacles to bring glory for the country.
“It’s true 2021 has brought a new dawn for Indian hockey. It’s been a dream year. Of course, it was full of challenges, ups and downs, and I am really proud of the way we have overcome each obstacle to bring back the Olympic glory.
“It was hard work of not four, but five years. We spent one whole year at the camp, trying to adapt to the new norms of life, our whole lifestyle has changed, we started living the bio-bubble life. So, there were challenges off the field as well,” added Manpreet.
After their historic bronze medal finish at the Tokyo Olympics 2020, India returned to action at the recently concluded Asian Champions Trophy in Dhaka – where the men in blue finished third after defeating arch-rivals Pakistan 4-3 in a thrilling match.
Moreover, as per the recent world rankings announced by the FIH, Indian men’s team ended the dream year on third spot, their highest-ever ranking since its introduction in 2003.
“We have promised our fans that we will keep working hard to make them proud again. Our goal obviously is to change the colour of this medal, and we are also aware of what it will take to do it.
“We have started the new cycle with Asian Champions Trophy, now we have to keep improving from here. We have a challenging schedule ahead, and we are up for it,” Manpreet signed off.