The winner of 8 Gold Medals, one silver and two Bronze medals in Olympics, India is set to contest the final of their 4th consecutive Olympic qualifier in Field hockey. The team which remained unbeaten in Olympics from 1928 to 1956 seeks redemption for not reaching the Olympics for the only time in 2008.
The opponent is France, whom they have already defeated at pool stage. Yet, you do not need to be an expert to point out the final of any game is a different match where rankings and history hardly count. Indian Women failed to win and create History losing to South Africa in the final, the billion people nation and probably th e world would want Indian men to win the final against France to re-enter Olympics.
Indian Men’s Hockey Achievements
- Olympics – 8 Golds (1928, 1932, 1936, 1948, 1952, 1956, 1964 and 1980), 1 Silver (1960), 2 Bronze (1968, 1972)
World Cup – 1st (1975), 2nd (1973), 3rd (1971)
Champions Trophy – 3rd (1982), 4th (1983, 1996, 2002, 2003, 2004)
Asian Games – 2 Golds (1966, 1998), 9 Silvers (1958, 1962m 1970, 1974, 1978, 1982, 1990, 1994, 2002), 2 Bronze (1986, 2010)
Asia Cup – Winner (2003, 2007), 2nd (1982, 1985, 1989, 1994), 3rd (1999)
Sultan Azlan Shah Cup – Winner (1985, 1991, 1995, 2009, 2010)
Hockey Champions Challenge – 1st (2001), 2nd (2011), 3rd (2007, 2009)
Asia Champions Trophy – Winner (2011)
Commonwealth Games – 2nd (2010)
India in Olympic Qualifiers
The holders of all Hockey records are alleged to be the Catalyst behind the starting of Olympic Qualifiers. This is the 4th time when Olympics has organized Olympic Qualifiers. India is also appearing in the qualifier for the 4th time. They failed to enter Olympics in 2008, but in 2000 and 2004 they succeeded in qualifying using the event.
Many claim that as India could not qualify for the Olympics in Men’s Hockey, so to accommodate India the Olympics Organising Committee devised the legal entry plan for India by organising the qualifiers. Unfortunately, for the 4th consecutive Olympic event Indian Hockey still needs the qualifier to enter the main event in Olympics.
Indian Chance in 2012 Qualifier
India has got the easiest qualifying draw even in the qualifiers. They are the host. They are also the highest ranked team. They have already won all their matches at pool stage and are the only team to have gathered all available points in the Points Table.
Reaching the finals they have the luxury of not playing the 2nd best ranked team of the event as Canada is eliminated by France, which is playing the finals against India. Overall on paper India has the best chance. Still as the final is always unpredictable, it can be anybody’s game. The Indian Squad looks balanced, and the highest goal scorer of the event Sardar Singh may act as the key again. The comfortable win against France at pool stage may also serve as extra motivation and cool the nerves to book the tickets to London.