Shamsher Singh wants to emerge as a dependable player for Indian hockey team

Young Indian midfielder Shamsher Singh says his difficult background has prepared him well for the uncertainties in life and amidst a raging pandemic he is focussing on emerging as a dependable player for the team.

“I have come from difficult background with my father making his living from farming. There were several odds that I faced in my initial days in hockey and the struggle for basics like stick, kit and shoes were real,” Shamsher was quoted as saying in a press release, issued by Hockey India.

“I believe this past experience helped me brace for any uncertain circumstances and this year we have all been put off gear with the pandemic but what’s important is to continue to stay focused on our goals no matter the odds.”

The 23-year-old forward made his senior India debut at the Olympic Test event in Tokyo last year. It was a memorable one as India won the tournament by beating New Zealand 5-0 in the final, a match which saw Shamsher score his first senior team goal for the country.

“I wanted to build on my game further and was hopeful of finding opportunities in key events that were to be held this year,” said Shamsher, who honed his skills at the Surjit Singh Academy in Jalandhar.

“But with the scenario changing due to the pandemic, I have realigned my focus to make the most of the situation by improving my basics and gain experience by closely working with seniors in the team.”

Shamsher said the disappointment in 2016 when he missed out on making the team for the FIH Junior Men’s World Cup was a turning point in his career.

“I was part of the reserves but missed out on making the cut for the India squad that went on to win the coveted Junior World Cup.

“It was magical to watch the team lift the title in front of crazy hockey fans in Lucknow and watching the entire tournament from the sidelines only made me more determined to work hard and earn the India jersey.

“Now in the senior core probable group, my aim is to become a dependable player for the team and execute what’s expected of me from the coach.”

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