Following the announcement of the FIH Pro League Season 5 Calendar for 2023-24 by the International Hockey Federation (FIH) on Thursday, the Indian Men and Women’s Hockey Team expressed excitement as they believe the exposure during this outing will help in the team’s preparations for Paris 2024.
Both the teams will begin their campaign in home games scheduled to be held at the Kalinga Stadium, Bhubaneshwar, and Birsa Munda Hockey Stadium, Rourkela.
The Indian Women’s Hockey Team, who have been promoted to this edition of the FIH Pro League after being crowned Champions of the FIH Nations League, will take the field first against China on 6th February 2024 at the Kalinga Stadium. This will be followed by matches against Netherlands, Australia, and USA before they move to Rourkela, where they will take the field against China, Netherlands, Australia, and USA again. After the home matches, the Indian eves will play the away games in Antwerp, Belgium and Lee Valley, Great Britain where they will face off against Argentina, Belgium, Germany, and Great Britain respectively.
Elated to have qualified for the upcoming season, the Indian Women’s Hockey Team Captain Savita said, “We battled it out with some great teams in the FIH Nations Cup 2022 and earned our place in the FIH Pro League. The team is looking forward to the challenge of playing against the top-ranked teams in the world and test our mettle against them. These matches are a great litmus test to see where we stand, and we want to use this opportunity to raise the standard of our game particularly ahead of Paris 2024.”
Meanwhile, the Indian Men’s Hockey Team will face Spain in their first match of the FIH Pro League 2023/2024 on 10th February 2024 at the Kalinga Stadium, Bhubaneswar. In the previous season of FIH Pro League 2022-23, India ended up 4th overall and will be vying to finish on the podium in the upcoming season. In the upcoming season, India will take on Spain, Netherlands, Australia, and Ireland in home games at Kalinga Stadium, Bhubaneswar and Birsa Munda Hockey Stadium, Rourkela and play against Argentina and Belgium in away games at Antwerp, Belgium and Germany and Great Britain in away games at Lee Valley, Great Britain.
Harmanpreet Singh expressed his optimism for FIH Pro League Season 5 matches, “The team is looking forward to play against strong teams like Spain, Netherlands, Australia, and Ireland at home, in the initial stages of the league. We performed well in the last edition of the FIH Pro League but we want to do better this season, we have an undefeated run in the Birsa Munda Hockey Stadium, Rourkela and we will give our all to ensure that it remains that way and we will aim to perform at the same level, be it Bhubaneswar, Antwerp, or Lee Valley,” said the Captain of the Indian Men’s Hockey Team.
“We believe that the Pro League matches will be a perfect platform for us to see where we stand ahead of Paris 2024. We are excited to begin the campaign at home in Odisha,” added Harmanpreet Singh.