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We Played Aggressive Hockey Against Spain: Rani Rampal

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Indian women’s hockey team returned to New Delhi airport today after giving a smashing performance in Spain. They played five matches against the host country at the Consejo Superior de Deportes Hockey Stadium. The team returned victorious as they defeated Spain 4-1 in the fifth and final match and tied in the overall series.

Super skipper Rani Rampal returned to the team for this tour after having rested for the 5th Women’s Asian Champions Trophy held in South Korea.

After returning from Spain, Rampal expressed her joy by saying, “We played very well as a team in Spain. This series’ draw will give the confidence to our team to do better in the upcoming World Cup and Asian games.”

“We went there to prepare for the World Cup and we worked on our defensive structure and attacking structure. I think we played more aggressive hockey against the Spanish team which was good to see,” – Captain Rani Rampal

Before going for the Spain tour, chief coach Sjoerd Marijne had wanted the team to focus on keeping a tight structure in order to stop the opposition from scoring.

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“We played very fluent hockey in South Korea and the forwards did a great job. However, these five matches against the Spanish team will help us in organising ourselves better when we don’t have possession of the ball. We will look at our defensive structure, and make sure that we don’t concede easy goals against the opposition. If we can manage to defend well, then it will increase our chances of winning the match,” he had said.

And the team did exactly as he had said.

Talking about the strategy in the tour and what helped with the team’s performance, Rampal said, “We went there to prepare for the World Cup and we worked on our defensive structure and attacking structure. I think we played more aggressive hockey against the Spanish team which was good to see.”

But there are still some areas that the team needs to work on, says the captain. “We need to work on our Penalty Corner defence. Need to be more consistent to maintain the structure in defence and attack.”

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