A cadet of SAIL Hockey Academy (SHA), Rourkela has been selected to represent India in the men’s senior hockey team. Shilanand Lakra has been selected to be a part of the 18- member team for the 27th Sultan Azlan Shah Cup tournament to be played at Ipoh, Malaysia from 3rd to 10th March 2018.
Unlike many of the tribal hockey stars from the state, who played in deep defence, Shilanand, plays in the forward line. On being asked his coach Peter Tirky, said Shilanand’s basics are very strong, he joined us in 2015 and in two years he was in the junior team which played at Sultan of Johar Cup in Mayalsia.
He is a fast mover, with and without the ball, said the coach. The SAIL Hockey Academy, which was set up here in the year 1992 on a fifteen acres of land with almost all the modern facilities is gradually producing quality players.
One of the mainstay of Indian deep defence, Birendra Lakra, who has been rested for the tournament, is product of this academy, along with Pankaj Kumar Rajak a goal keeper, who played in the senior team in the SAF Games, Pawan Lakra, Anand Lakra, Janma Majhi, who was in the camp and others.
In the last one year it had won in many prestigious tournaments and notable amongst them was the victory at Jhansi, where it conquered the Under-21 All India Gold Cup.