It was back to the routine for the five players — Arjun Halappa, Adrian D'Souza, Sandeep Singh, Sardar Singh and Prabhjot Singh — after six days of inaction and anxiety. The five, who had taken off from the ongoing National hockey camp to attend a World Series Hockey media conference by its promoters Nimbus Sports International and IHF in Mumbai on June 20, were temporarily banned until further notice.

With Hockey India issuing a “provisional pardon” pending the players' reply, by August 2, to a show cause notice, they were asked to join the other campers in the combined gym session on Wednesday morning and on-field practice later in the afternoon.

The players, on their part, were non-committal. “We will give the reply by August 2 and then see what needs to be done or meet the officials, if need be accordingly.” David John, the teams exercise physiologist, said: “They have missed out on the drills for many days now and I feel it will be tough for them to be up to the mark in the coming days. This may prove expensive and they may even miss the Asian Champions Trophy, in Ordos (China) starting September 3.”

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