NEW DELHI: Defender Akshata Abaso Dhekale and striker Deepika Jr are the two new faces in a 22-member Indian women’s hockey team, which will take on world no.5 Germany in the FIH Pro League matches here on Saturday and Sunday.
Goalkeeper Savita has been named captain with experienced defender Deep Grace Ekka continuing to assist as vice-captain.
Both Akshata of Maharashtra and Haryana’s Deepika Jr were handpicked in the senior core group following their impressive performances in the Hockey India National Championship.
Talking about the team selection, Indian women’s hockey team chief coach Janneke Schopman said: “It’s an exciting time for us playing yet again two back-to-back Pro League games at home against an esteemed opponent.
“Germany is a very consistent team with probably the best basic skills around the world. They defend very well and are quick to attack. I feel we have selected a nice mix of young talent and experience and we’re looking to build on our performance vs Spain.”

The Indian women are currently placed third in the FIH Pro League standings with nine points from four games that include three wins and one loss.
The Indian women had defeated China 7-1 and 2-1 respectively in Muscat in their FIH Pro League opening ties before winning one (2-1) and losing 3-4 against Spain at the Kalinga Stadium here last month.
Indian women’s team:
Goalkeepers: Savita (Captain), Bichu Devi Kharibam.
Defenders: Deep Grace Ekka (Vice-Captain), Gurjit Kaur, Nikki Pradhan, Udita, Akshata Abaso Dhekale.
Midfielders: Nisha, Salima Tete, Sushila Chanu Pukhrambam, Jyoti, Monika, Neha, Navjot Kaur, Sonika.
Forwards:Rajwinder Kaur, Sharmila Devi, Navneet Kaur, Lalremsiami, Sangita Kumari, Mariana Kujur, Deepika.
Standbys: Rajani Etimarpu, Ishika Chaudhary, Namita Toppo.


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