“Driven by the desire not to disappoint 1.4 billion people”: India aim to win hockey gold at Paris Olympics

“Driven by the desire not to disappoint 1.4 billion people”: India aim to win hockey gold at Paris Olympics

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Indian men's hockey team captain Harmanpreet Singh is desperate to win a gold medal at the upcoming Paris Olympics to pay a fitting tribute to the country and the legends of the sport. Eight-time Olympic champions India revived the golden days of the sport in the country by winning a bronze medal after 41 years at the Tokyo Olympics and the Harmanpreet-led side wants nothing less than a gold medal at Paris 2024.

“We are giving our best to carry forward our history and legacy. Winning a gold medal will be a tribute to India and our seniors,” the top drag flicker said on Jio Cinema's show 'The Dreamers'. Harmanpreet's predecessor Manpreet Singh, under whom India won a historic bronze medal in Tokyo, expressed similar sentiments.

“Seeing our flag on the right, I thought next time we can try harder to keep it in the centre along with our national anthem being played. This is the beginning of our new journey,” he said.

Veteran Indian goalkeeper PR Sreejesh highlighted the tireless effort and collective spirit of the team.

“Somebody somewhere is training to beat you. That idea pushes me out of my comfort zone. Every time I train, I am driven by the desire not to let down the 1.4 billion people of my country.

“There was a time when Indian hockey depended on individual brilliance, but now we play as a cohesive unit, and this change is the key to our success at the international level,” Sreejesh said.

India head coach Craig Fulton spoke about the team's mindset, philosophy and tactics that help them compete with some of the best teams in the world. “There isn't a team this Indian team hasn't beaten. You might as well ask — what do other teams have to do to beat India? “The whole philosophy in my mind is defend, counter-attack and win — being a team that can defend against the best teams in the world but then counter-attack from anywhere. And that's in the DNA of this Indian team,” the South African said.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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