Hockey World Cup: Spain skipper Iglesias excited to play India in opener


Playing India in India on the opening night time of a mega occasion is probably the most thrilling recreation and Spain captain Alvaro Iglesias is trying ahead to taking over the hosts in the final match of the opening day of the FIH Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup 2023 Bhubaneswar-Rourkela.

Spain males’s hockey workforce will open its marketing campaign in opposition to the hosts India in Rourkela on January 13 and as per Iglesias, it’s the most fun problem for any opposition in the world.

“I think it’s the most exciting game you can play. If someone asks anyone which game they want to play, probably everyone will say they want to play against India in India in the opening match of the World Cup. It will be great. The preparation has been good. We have been training a lot together and we are waiting for the moment,” he mentioned.

“We know the stadium in Rourkela is bigger. We know there will be a lot more crowd there. It will be hard to listen to our teammates and the instructions from the referee as well. But it will be an incredibly exciting atmosphere and we are really looking forward to playing here,” he was quoted as saying by Hockey India in a launch on Sunday.

The arrival of India’s group stage rivals Spain and Wales in Rourkela on Sunday energised the town’s ambiance forward of the World Cup. Both groups reached Rourkela from Bhubaneswar by means of Charter Flights.

Spain head coach Max Caldas saved his playing cards shut to his chest when requested about his techniques going into the primary match in opposition to India. “The plan is to go to the hotel, have some rest, and have some food and take it easy,” he mentioned.

Spain performed in opposition to India and New Zealand in the FIH Men’s Hockey Pro League 2022/23 just lately and coach Caldas mentioned that his workforce is used to enjoying in India now and that can enhance their recreation.

“It’s an honour and joy for us to come back to India. We love coming here. We are looking forward to the challenges. When you are at ease at any place, you tend to feel better and then play better. And we feel at ease in India,” he mentioned.

All the match tickets in Rourkela are offered out. When requested if the large crowd on the stadium will have an effect on his workforce’s focus throughout match days, Spain’s Head Coach mentioned: “I believe it is going to be difficult for all to compete in Rourkela. Because of the pandemic, we’ve forgotten how to play in entrance of huge crowds. But we’re not going to give attention to that an excessive amount of. We will give attention to ourselves.

“It’s a 16-team tournament. We are a young, fast team and we are going to play to our guns and see how we go,” he signed off.

Coach Newcombe emphasised that his workforce shouldn’t be underestimated in the competitors regardless of Wales’ present rating of 15 in the world.

“We are going to play three brilliant hockey teams – India, England, and Spain. We know that it will be tough. But we are here to cause some upsets. We are here to win hockey games. I don’t think people will be taking us lightly,” he mentioned.

On being requested if the Rourkela climate could be a problem, the coach mentioned that his workforce may truly benefit from the warmth in Odisha as in contrast to the moist and chilly climate in Wales.

“It does not feel too hot. We played in Malaysia and it was quite hot out there. We are used to playing in India in the summer. So this is fine. It’s cold and wet in Wales as of now, so we are actually excited to get some heat,” he mentioned.

Meanwhile, Wales skipper Rupert Shipperley mentioned that enjoying in entrance of over 20,000 spectators in Rourkela will carry out its personal challenges. But he added that he hopes his workforce will probably be ready to entertain the followers and acquire assist from the group.

“The boys are really looking forward to getting out on the pitch in front of that many spectators. It brings out its own challenges. It’s not something we do regularly,” Shipperley mentioned.

“We will be looking to gain a few supporters while we are here in India, maybe if not against India, then maybe certainly against some of the other oppositions. We want to entertain, that is why we are here. So that people enjoy watching us and the kind of hockey we play. We hope to get fans behind our side,” he added.



(Only the headline and movie of this report could have been reworked by the Business Standard workers; the remainder of the content material is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


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