With one year to go for the Olympic Games to begin in Tokyo on July 23, 2021, Indian men's hockey team skipper Manpreet Singh feels that the current squad is capable of winning a medal in the quadrennial event and make country proud.
The Indian men's and women's teams have competed well against top teams in the recent past and have registered memorable victories at their respective FIH Series Finals and the FIH Olympic Qualifiers last year.
Manpreet Singh expressed that the national side has been getting better with each Olympics.
"It's certainly exciting that in exactly one year's time, we will be in Tokyo with the best of the athletes from around the world. I have been part of two Olympic Games so far, so I have gotten used to the big stage. However, there's always going to be a touch of nervousness floating around among the players as we start the one-year countdown," the skipper said in a statement.
"The 2012 Olympic Games was certainly a disastrous campaign for us, but it will be special for me since it was my first Olympics. We went to the 2016 Olympic Games with a much better side and put up a better performance, but we didn't achieve our desired result there. We are certainly looking to up the ante in Tokyo," he added.
The 28-year-old stated that the Indian team is on track to bag a medal at the Olympics next year.
"Looking at the way our squad has been performing in the last year, we certainly have a good chance to win a medal at the Olympics. Everyone is clear about their roles in the side and we have enough time to evolve as a team as well. We are definitely on track for achieving our desired result in the upcoming Olympics. We just have to keep concentrating on carrying out the processes well and the results will take care of itself," said Manpreet.
The men's team has last won a gold medal in the 1980 Olympics in Moscow. The team had a poor run in the last three editions of the Olympics.
The Tokyo Olympics will be held from July 23 to August 8, 2021, while the Paralympics will take place from August 24 to September 5, 2021.
( With inputs from ANI )