The team led by experienced defender Sunita Lakra and vice-captain Savita eye a strong start against world no.12 Japan, who have in the past given India a hard fight, often challenging them with a structured defence.
India had also lost 0-2 to Japan in last year's Hockey World League Round 3 but avenged that loss in the Asia Cup where they defeated Japan, who were the defending Champions and hosts.
"We have always had tough competition against Japan. They are a quality team and breaking their defence early in the match will be crucial for us," said 27-year-old skipper Sunita.
India can take heart from their 6-0 win against Malaysia in the warm-up match yesterday.
The team, according to Sunita, is high on confidence after doing well against higher ranked teams at the recent the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.
"We want to make a good start to the tournament and the team is confident of it. We no longer go into tournaments as the underdogs. We had a good warm-up match against Malaysia. We hope to carry the same consistency into our first game tomorrow," Sunita asserted.
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