Bengaluru, Nov 20 , Indian women’s hockey team Goalkeeper Savita after being nominated for the third consecutive time in the Goalkeeper of the Year category at FIH Hockey Stars Awards said never thought I would win this award twice in a row, now nominated again.
Savita, who had won the FIH Awards in 2021 and 2022, added that her achievement is an outcome of teamwork.
“I never thought I would win this award for two straight years, and get nominated yet again. I feel really great, and it’s a proud moment for me, my family and my teammates as well. When I started playing, I never thought I would come this far, and it is all due to the support of my family and my teammates,” Savita was quoted by Hockey India website, expressing her joy at being nominated for the FIH Women’s Goalkeeper of the Year Award 2023.
“In team sport, no achievement is based on individual efforts but is an outcome of teamwork. It’s great to be recognised for your hard work, and it motivates the entire team,” she added.
Savita has led India to various important wins in recent years, which includes the title win at the inaugural FIH Hockey Women’s Nations Cup 2022 in Spain that helped India earn promotion to the FIH Pro League 2023-24.
She then led the team to the bronze medal win at the Asian Games Hangzhou 2022 followed by the title win at the recently held Jharkhand Women’s Asian Champions Trophy Ranchi 2023. Under her Captaincy, India also achieved their best-ever world rankings (No. 6 with 2368.83 points).
Reflecting on the season, Savita said: “It has been an amazing season for us. I’m just proud of how we overcame the obstacles that were thrown our way. We’ve gotten better with each game. Even the younger players have shown great tenacity; they have worked hard and given their all.”
With the focus pinned on the upcoming FIH Hockey Olympic Qualifier, the Indian women will be aiming for a top-three finish at the tournament to secure their qualification for Paris 2024 Olympics.
The Olympic Qualifier is scheduled to be held in Ranchi from January 13 to 19.
India are placed in Pool B alongside New Zealand, the United States, and Italy. Pool A consists of Germany, Japan, Chile, and the Czech Republic.
The top two teams from each group will then progress to the Semi-Finals, and the top three finishing teams will secure their qualification for the Paris Olympics.