No recognition for Indian women’s hockey team

  • Samarth Goyal, Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
  • Updated: Sep 13, 2015 17:50 IST
Indian women's hockey team Captain Ritu Rani (R) and Vice-Captain Deepika Thakur (L) with Chief Coach Mathias Ahrens as they celebrate the team's qualification for Rio 2016 Olympics in New Delhi on Saturday. (PTI Photo)

Indian women’s hockey team has qualified for the Olympics after 36 years. But despite the historic achievement, the team’s captain, Ritu Rani, is disappointed.

“A lot of people have been congratulating us, but I don’t think it is enough. We’ll feel good when we get the same kind of attention that our men’s team gets, or that other sports teams get,” says the 23-year-old.

However, she believes that the achievement will help her team make India proud at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. “We have made history, and it’s a great feeling. We want to use this confidence, and prove ourselves. We worked very hard to get here. The team is in a very positive frame of mind, and that’s how we will perform really well,” she says.

While the player says she can be a ‘very serious person’ in the dressing room, she admits that too much pressure on the players can impact their confidence. “I really remain serious... that’s how I am. But as a captain, I have to make sure that I don’t let the pressure get to my players.

Ours is not a very tense dressing room. Our forwards – Punam (Barla) and Vandana (Kataria) – love cracking jokes and playing pranks. We listen to a lot of music, which also helps us. It’s not really tough to manage the pressure,” she says.

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