India play their opening encounter against South Africa on Wednesday. © Screengrab/Twitter
Hockey is undoubtedly on everyone’s mind as the Odisha World Cup 2018 starts on Wednesday with fifth-ranked India taking on South Africa and Belgium squaring off against Canada. Surprisingly, hockey fever has also gripped a golden retriever, as a video of the dog running around on the turf is doing the rounds on social media. The clip, posted by the International Hockey Federation on Twitter, is already putting a smile on hockey lovers’ face. The tweet read, “Who said hockey is only for humans? ?? Watch the most adorable hockey star performing ??#LoveHockey.”
— International Hockey Federation (@FIH_Hockey) November 27, 2018
In the recent past, the Indian men’s hockey team has shown that it can compete with the best in world and regain its lost glory. Last month, India had completely dominated the Asian Champions Trophy, only to share the title with Pakistan after rain washed away the tournament final.
India were the only unbeaten side in the tournament. Recent performances have raised hopes of the Indian team ending its agonising 43-year wait for a world title. And with the Hockey World Cup 2018 being played in Bhubaneswar, the expectations have soared.
The Indian men’s team has won eight Olympic gold medals but have only one world title, which came way back in 1975 when Ajit Pal Singh led the country to glory.
In the last 10 editions since India’s maiden triumph in 1975, the country’s best performance has been a lowly fifth-place finish at the 1982 edition. But with India showing massive signs of improvement, there is hope again.
(With IANS inputs)
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