SV Sunil claims team targeting gold medal at 2018 Commonwealth Games

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SV Sunil claims team targeting gold medal at 2018 Commonwealth Games

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SportsCafe Desk

03/27/2018

Indian hockey team’s senior forward SV Sunil has claimed that India are targeting the Gold medal at the upcoming Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast. The Karnataka player has also added that the team have decided not to take any team lightly and will give their best at the tournament.

While the Indian sports contingent is hoping to recreate their performance of the 2010 edition, there are hopes from all athletes to give their best at the Commonwealth Games this time around. The Indian hockey team are also no different as they will try to leave behind the terrible performance of the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup to win a medal in Gold Coast. The team has also not left any stone unturned to be at the best of their form and Sunil claimed the same.

“Our target is gold. In 2014, we had chances but could not convert. This time we have a very good chance and have trained accordingly. We have a good team, a mix of experience and youth. It is up to us how we perform. We have to up the ante from the start, only then can we win. We have to maintain the team game structure for the entire tournament,” Sunil was quoted as saying by Hindustan Times.

After a disappointing European tour and Sultan Azlan Shah Cup, India worked on their flaws at a camp in SAI Bengaluru under the close eyes of new analytical coach Chris Ciriello. The camp went on for a couple of weeks where the team basically focused on how to convert the penalties into goals during match situations. Sunil explained that and stated that the result will be visible on the turf.

“I agree the forward line has been inconsistent. But you have to see even if we are not scoring goals, we are at least earning penalty corners. We have worked on it. (New analytical coach) Chris Ciriello has taught us a few things like when to be patient inside the D. The biggest problem we had was positioning inside the circle. Our forward line used to receive the ball and then go inside the circle, which is very easy for the oppositiondefence to tackle. Things have changed a bit. We practised new things in the last camp in Bangalore. We will see the results in Commonwealth Games.

“I have experienced it many times. Whenever we take it easy, we lose. Whether it is the Olympics or Hockey World League, we have lost or drawn against teams like Canada and Ireland from winning positions. This is a lesson. In the last two camps we have decided not to take any team lightly, whether we are facing the World No 1 or 15, our approach will be the same.”

The current Indian hockey team has a mix of youth and experienced players in the team with youngsters like Amit Rohidas in the squad. But, Sunil stated that there is no senior-junior approach in the team now.

“I experienced the same when I came in. I told them there is no senior or junior player, we are all the same. If they have personal problems or are struggling with their game, we discuss about them. At the end of the day, team is most important. Even if one player’s performance goes up or down, the team will be affected.”

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