New Delhi: Two Odiya players, Deep Grace Ekka and Lilima Miniz have been selected in the 18-member Indian team who will embark on a tour January 24 to Spain. The team announced Friday by Hockey India (HI) will be led by ace striker Rani Rampal while experienced goalkeeper Savita will be her deputy. However, two other Odia players, Namita Toppo and Sunita Lakra has been rested.
The Indian women will play four matches against Spain and two against the World Cup runners-up, Ireland. The Women in Blue will open their campaign, January 26.
The team will leave January 24 from Bangalore, where they have been training based for the past two weeks.
“The team have a different mix of players this time with some of the experienced players like Sunita Lakra and Namita Toppo. The idea is to give more players exposure at the top level so we can create more depth in our selection ahead of the Olympic Qualifiers,” chief coach Sjoerd Marijne said.
The squad: (Goalkeepers) Savita, Rajani Etimarpu; (Defenders) Reena Khokhar, Deep Grace Ekka, Salima Tete, Nikki Pradhan, Gurjit Kaur, Sushila Chanu Pukhrambam; (Midfielders) Lilima Minz, Karishma Yadav, Sonika, Neha Goyal; (Forwards) Rani, Vandana Katariya, Navneet Kaur, Lalremsiami, Udita and Navjot Kaur.