Veteran India goalkeeper P R Sreejesh desires to compete on the Paris Olympics however stated on Saturday rather a lot will rely on his health and efficiency within the run-up to the 2014 Video games.
The 33-year-old from Kerala was just lately given the very best goalkeeper award in males’s part on the FIH annual awards for his efficiency in India’s historic bronze medal-winning feat on the Tokyo Olympics.
Requested if he could be enjoying on the Paris Olympics, Sreejesh stated: “No participant will say no to an Olympics, we’re grasping folks. The motivation will at all times be to work exhausting and provides finest.
“I’ve had a profession of 21 years. So I’ll at all times wish to play yet another match, yet another Olympics so so long as my workforce members don’t kick me out, I’ll keep within the workforce for certain,” he quipped.
Through the India At this time conclave, he added, “However nothing is definite in a sportsperson’s life. There will be an harm, efficiency can go down, others can do higher than me.”
Sreejesh’s former teammates Rupinder Pal Singh, Birendra Lakra and SV Sunil had just lately retired following a profitable Olympic marketing campaign to pave the best way for the kids.
When India skipper Manpreet Singh was posed the identical query, the captain stated: “He’s going to Paris from our aspect. Sreejesh is the very best purpose keeper, so we might need him to be there on the purpose. We have now the boldness in him however relaxation is determined by his health and different issues.”
Sreejesh, who has proven the flexibility to get higher with time, has little doubt that each the lads’s and ladies’s groups will make the rostrum on the 2024 Video games, however says the highway forward might be harder.
“The motivation will at all times be there to alter the color of the medal in Paris. However the highway isn’t straightforward. We had received a medal 41 years in the past and after that Indians despatched us to Olympics with quite a lot of expectations.
“Now that we’ve got proved we are able to win, the expectations might be greater once we go to Paris. However it received’t be straightforward, it doesn’t occur in a single day.
“The ladies’s workforce was unfortunate to overlook out this time however undoubtedly I’m assured that each groups will end on the podium in Paris.”
Sreejesh had pulled off a shocking save within the ultimate few seconds of the bronze medal match towards Germany at Tokyo.
Recollecting these six seconds, he stated: “After we obtained that PC, our response was like what is going to occur now, there was an opportunity that it might slip away however there was not a lot time to suppose. We needed to defend. I used to be planning my defensive construction wanting on the opposition.
“As a goalkeeper I had my very own issues, to focus and I used to be simply considering that I’ve been enjoying for therefore a few years, so I simply have to avoid wasting this one.”
Whereas the lads’s workforce received a medal, their feminine counterparts missed out narrowly, ending a creditable fourth after dropping 3-4 to defending champions Nice Britain within the bronze-play play off.
India ladies’s workforce skipper Rani stated the disappointing marketing campaign on the 2016 Rio Video games was the turning level for the aspect.
“For us, 2016 was first Olympics, we didn’t win any match and I feel it was a turning level for us as a result of we learnt the way to deal with stress in such large occasion and this was a unique Olympics as a result of we misplaced first three matches however nonetheless had the self-belief,” she stated.
“We misplaced holland and germany however we performed good hockey and this gave us the boldness that we are able to beat different groups and that perception carried us via towards Australia.”
Goalkeeper Savita Punia additionally echoed her views.
“We had certified after 36 years in 2016 Olympics however there was no efficiency. I used to be not proud of my efficiency so within the subsequent 4-5 years we needed to do one thing.
“The England match we didn’t play nicely and on hindsight due to that match, we did nicely within the subsequent video games. Our coach was so upset that he didn’t have lunch with us.
“So Eire match was extra vital than quarterfinals, which was a stress match. We knew Australia is an effective workforce, they had been greater ranked, so stress was on then.
“We had been additionally assured as a result of we had misplaced an in depth match towards Australia in 2018 Commonwealth Video games, so we simply needed to do higher, there was no possibility.”