Hockey

Tirkey prescribes tighter defence

Former India captain Dilip Tirkey prescribes a tighter defence and a careful approach for the Indian colts in their crucial quarterfinal match on Wednesday against Belgium in the Junior World Cup here on Wednesday.

Tirkey, a well-known defender in his time, told The Hindu on Monday: “We need to be more organised in defence.

“Belgium is one of the top teams and runner-up of the last edition. We cannot afford a loose defence.”

“We must avoid wrong passing and should not give Belgium chances to counterattack. We need to be alert for long passes and the aerial ball. We have to intercept those to deny the opponent any advantage,” he said.

Looking back at India’s pool matches, Tirkey said, “France played better than us and showed it is a fit team with a process in place. France played well for three quarters, while we played well in one. Canada and Poland did not put much pressure, yet these matches were good practice opportunities.

“Our confidence must be up after two wins. We have some quality players. Our penalty corner conversion has been good and we need to focus more on getting field goals,” he said.

Tirkey, who was rarely booked during his long career, had a word of caution for the host.

“In the last match, we got a few cards. We have to be careful as suspension affects the structure on the field. Such mistakes may prove very costly against stronger sides,” said Tirkey.


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Printable version | Jan 29, 2022 2:05:14 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/hockey/tirkey-prescribes-tighter-defence/article37760562.ece

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