India Women Hockey Team booking berth for upcoming 2016 Rio Olympics
New Delhi(N4C Sports)- Hockey India today applauded the historic achievement of the India Women Hockey Team for booking their berth in the upcoming 2016 Rio Olympics. The team is featuring in the all important tournament after a gap of 36 years. The team has rightfully earned the place in the Games through a rigorous qualification process. The Indian Women Hockey team last time featured in the 1980 Moscow Olympics, where they finished at a respectable 4th position.
The team posted a 5th place finish in the FINTRO Hockey World League Semi-Final 2015 in Antwerp, Belgium to ensure that they remained in contention for Olympics. The berth was confirmed when Spain lost the semi final clash between England and Spain during the Unibet EuroHockey Championships 2015 (Women) held .
While the former already had a confirmed seat at Rio, a win for Spain would have meant they would have progressed through to the final and stayed in contention for qualification for the Olympic Games. Other semi-finalists of the EuroHockey Championships (Women) – The Netherlands and Germany – had also already sealed their places during the FIH Hockey World League Semi-Final Round 2015.
The confirmation of the Indian Women Hockey Team’s qualification has been received over night from the International Hockey Federation (FIH).
Congratulating the India Women Team, an elated Dr. Narinder Dhruv Batra, President, Hockey India said, “It is a proud moment for Hockey India and the whole country. We have been waiting for this for the last 36 years and this achievement is the sweetest and the most memorable among allIH our previous feats in recent times. I congratulate all the players and coaching staff who made this dream real and this achievement also shows their commitment toward their responsibilities. Hockey India thanks all the coaches who trained these players at their respective academies, parents, sponsors and the entire hockey fraternity, who continuously motivated the players and without their support, we could not have achieved this success. I am sure the girls will make us proud at the Olympics.”
Hockey India Secretary General Mohd Mushtaque Ahmad added: “The Olympics qualification is indeed a great achievement for the India Women Team and the Indian hockey fraternity. The players and the Coaching Staff have done a commendable job and they are still training hard for the 2016 Olympic Games. Hockey India is doing its part and fulfilling all the requirements of the team. I congratulate the whole team and the people who have been working hard behind the scene to achieve this success. However, the job is still half done and the team now has to set a new aim of clinching the first Olympic medal.”
Among the final 12 places in the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, ten teams have booked their berths till now. Korea (2014 Incheon Asian Games champion), Great Britain, China, Germany, Argentina, The Netherlands, Australia, New Zealand (top finishers of the 2015 FIH HWL Semi-Final Round which took place in Antwerp and Valencia) and United States (2015 Toronto Pan-American Games champion) and India now becoming the 10th team to qualify. The last two participating teams will be confirmed in the 2015 African Qualifying Tournament in Egypt and 2015 Oceania Cup in New Zealand.
The 2016 Summer Olympics will start with a glittering Opening Ceremony on 5thAugust at Maracanã Stadium in Rio de Janeiro and the Women team will commence its outing from 7th August 2016.