Salima Tete replaces Savita Punia as the new Captain of Indian Women’s Hockey Team

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Salima Tete

In a significant development in Indian women’s hockey, midfielder Salima Tete has replaced veteran goalkeeper Savita Punia as the captain of the 24-strong squad. This change of guard comes ahead of the Belgium and England legs of the FIH Pro League starting later this month.

Salima Tete: Captain of the Indian Women’s Hockey Team

Salima Tete, a young and dynamic player, has shown exceptional skills and leadership qualities on the field. Her appointment as the captain signifies a strategic move towards infusing fresh energy and perspective into the team.

Navneet Kaur, another talented player, has been named as Salima’s deputy for the tour, replacing Vandana Katariya. This new leadership duo is expected to bring a unique dynamism to the team’s performance.

Salima expressed her happiness and excitement about leading the team. She acknowledged the big responsibility that comes with the new role and expressed her eagerness to take on the challenge. “We have a strong squad and it’s a mix of experienced and young players,” Salima was quoted as saying in a Hockey India press release.

The team is gearing up for the upcoming Belgium and England legs of the FIH Hockey Pro League 2023-2024. “We look to put our strong foot forward. We have worked on areas where we needed to improve,” Salima added.

Savita Punia, the previous captain, led India during the failed Olympic qualifying campaign as well as the subsequent pro league home matches. Despite the change in leadership, Savita’s experience and skills as a goalkeeper will continue to be crucial for the team.

The squad for the upcoming matches has seen a few changes from the Bhubaneswar and Rourkela legs of the Pro League in February of this year. Gurjit Kaur, Sonika and Nisha, and Beauty Dungdung have been replaced by Mahima Chaudhary, Manisha Chauhan, Pretti Dubey, and Deepika Soreng.

The matches in Belgium will begin on May 22 and end on May 26, while the England leg will start on June 1 and end on June 9. The team will face Argentina and Belgium twice in the first phase, beginning with Argentina on May 22.

India is currently sixth in the FIH Pro League table, with eight points from as many matches. The team aims to improve its standing in the tournament under the new leadership.

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