Indian hockey team striker Navneet Kaur believes the ongoing phase is the right period for aspiring women’s players to take up the sport.
“I believe this is the golden period for women’s hockey in India. We are given equal importance, job security, financial benefits through cash awards when we win, all these are great encouraging factors to take up the sport professionally,” Navneet, who made her international debut in 2014, said.
“I feel the following for our team has also grown tremendously since our improved performances at the 2018 Women’s World Cup, Asia Cup, Asian Games and Asian Champions Trophy.
“It is very motivating to see fans leaving us messages on social media and expressing their support to us,” added the striker who has so far made 79 appearances for the national team.
Speaking about the on-going national coaching camp, Navneet said, “Our intensity has increased this week onwards and we are able to take more load without facing any fatigue.”
“We are happy that we are hitting the same fitness levels prior to the lockdown. The best part is that since we continued our fitness regime through indoor workouts during the series of lockdowns, none of us has put on weight. These factors have helped us a lot,” she explained.
The player from Shahbad Markanda, Haryana also expressed that senior players always emphasise that youngsters must respect the facilities they have today and this should encourage them to do better in the sport.
“Players like Rani and Savita who have been with the team for over a decade always tell us how things have improved for women’s hockey over the years and how fortunate we are to be part of the team now,” she said.
“They motivate us to ride on this support to perform better in top events. We know that not only our lives will change if we win a medal at the Olympics but it will grow the sport by many folds in India,” added Navneet