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Mandeep Mor, Sumit Junior, Shilanand new faces in national hockey squad

IANS  |  New Delhi 

Defender and forwards Kumar and on Tuesday earned maiden call-ups to the Indian hockey squad, while veteran midfielder returned and was rested for the 27th Shah Cup to begin March 3 in Ipoh,

Sardar will the side, while the responsibility of vice will be shouldered by forward Experienced defenders Rupinder Pal Singh, and are not in the squad, and neither are seasoned attackers and and veteran

The decisions are not only aimed at keeping the players fresh ahead of a busy year but also giving youngsters the opportunity to stake their claim. It will ultimately result in having a strong core group, according to Dutch tactician Marijne.

"Just like the Tour where four players made their International debut, the Shah Cup is a great opportunity for these new players to get international exposure against top teams," stated in a Hockey release.

The tournament will see World No.1 Australia, World No.2 Argentina, England, India, and hosts in a contest that ends on March 10.

While Kumar (Junior) is part of the ongoing Senior National Camp, from and from Odisha have been called-up from the Junior Men's Core Group. They were also part of the colts team that won bronze medal at the Sultan of Johor Cup last year.

By introducing new players to the senior fold, Marijne is looking at long-term gains for the team that has set their eyes firmly on in

"With youngsters who have done well in as well as few more getting the right international exposure, it will only help us create a bigger group. Playing top teams in their first tournament will be challenging but this is also an opportunity for the seniors to help the youngsters adjust to this level," added the 43-year-old Dutch

On Sardar's role as captain, Marijne said, "Sardar is one of the leaders in the core group and in Manpreet Singh's absence, he has been chosen for the job. He is an and having missed two tournaments previously, this is an opportunity for him to show his skills."

Sardar will play in the midfield along with SK Uthappa, Sumit, and India's defence wears a young look. It comprises of Varun Kumar, Amit Rohidas, Dipsan Tirkey, Surender Kumar, and The Indian goalpost will be kept by Suraj Karkera and Krishan Pathak.

Apart from and Shilanand, the forward line will feature Gurjant Singh, and

"This tournament is extremely important for the players who are going because it is another opportunity for them to experience high level competition especially from teams like and

"This is a chance for them to show their capability at the international level and ensure their place in the squad for future tournaments," said Marijne.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Suraj Karkera, Krishan B. Pathak

Defenders: Amit Rohidas, Dipsan Tirkey, Varun Kumar, Surender Kumar, Nilam Sanjeep Xess, Mandeep Mor

Midfielders: S.K. Uthappa, (Captain), Sumit, Nilakanta Sharma, Simranjeet Singh

Forwards: Gurjant Singh, (Vice-captain), Talwinder Singh, (Junior), Shilanand Lakra

--IANS

pur/hs

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, February 20 2018. 14:58 IST
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