Indian men’s hockey team jumps to fourth place in FIH World Rankings | Hockey News

NEW DELHI: Riding the thundering back-to-back wins against Germany And Australia in the Pro League, the Indian men’s hockey team jumped two places to fourth to last FIH Rankings.
India edged out Australia, which fell one spot to fifth.
The Netherlands, who won bronze at the World Cup, sit in first place while second-placed Belgium sit second in the latest FIH rankings.
Reigning world champions Germany, who occupied first place, also fell two places to third place after losing back-to-back games against India.
India have won all four matches — two against Germany and two against Australia — in their FIH Pro League matches played at the Birsa Munda stadium in Rourkela.

This is less than two months after India made a shocking exit in the round of 16 at the World Cup held in Bhubaneswar in January.
India won both home and away matches against Germany 3-2 and 6-3 while beating Australia 5-4 and 4-3 on penalties (after 2-2 in regulation time) in the first and second games.
Not only did the all-win performance take India to the top of the FIH Pro League points table, the team led by Harman Preet Singh jumped two places from sixth to fourth in the latest FIH rankings.
“These things (the world ranking) don’t matter that much to us. We don’t keep that in mind when we play. Our only priority was to convert our chances and keep the pressure on the opponent” said Indian captain Harmanpreet Singh. .
“Some of the youngsters who had the opportunity to show their talent also resisted the opportunity and did very well for themselves as well as for the team,” said Harmanpreet, who is currently the league’s top scorer. FIH Pro League in progress with 11 goals, ahead of Belgian Alexander Hendrickx (six goals).
The 21,000 capacity Birsa Munda Stadium proved to be a stronghold for the Indian side who went unbeaten in eight matches. The Indian team have won seven and drawn once.
India have played four home matches at the World Cup – two in the group stage and two in the laying stage – and have won three and drawn once. India beat Spain 2-0 in the first group match and drew 0-0 against England in the second.
They beat Wales 4-2 in the final group game at Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar before losing to New Zealand in a penalty shootout in the knockout tie at the same venue to crash out of the room mistress.
The Indian side went on to win two ladder matches at Birsa Munda Stadium to finish in joint ninth place in the World Cup.
“We are happy to keep our record intact here in Rourkela. We haven’t lost a single game here at this beautiful stadium. Without a doubt, Birsa Munda Hockey Stadium is very lucky for us,” said Harmanpreet.
“When you get so much love and encouragement from the fans, we want to go out there and win every game,” said the drag-flicker ace who scored twice in the tense victory of India against Australia on Wednesday.
“There are many positives for us from this outing here in Rourkela which will keep us in good stead as we prepare for the upcoming Asian Games,” added Harmanpreet, who failed with his drag-flick in the Indian campaign. of the World Cup.
(With PTI inputs)


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