New Delhi: The Indian men’s and women’s hockey teams have decided to pull out of the Commonwealth Games 2022, scheduled to be held from July 28 to August 8, 2022, in Birmingham, England. The teams have decided to put their full focus on the Asian Games 2022, which are set to be hosted at Hangzhou, China from September 10 to September 25, 2022.
Since the Asian Games are a continental qualification event for the Paris Olympics 2024, the Indian men’s and women’s hockey teams need to be at their very best when they take part in the Asian Games in September 2022. It will be a priority for the teams to win the gold medal at the Asian Games 2022, thus securing a direct qualification for the Indian men and women teams for the Paris Olympic Games. This will allow the teams a period of almost 2 years to fully prepare for the Olympics.
Speaking about the decision to withdraw from the Commonwealth Games, Gyanendro Ningombam, President, Hockey India said, “The Asian Games 2022 is certainly a very important tournament for us since it’s a continental qualification event for Paris Olympics 2024. “The Indian men’s and women’s teams have to play at their optimum level and therefore it was important for us to withdraw from the Commonwealth Games 2022, which is being held just before the Asian Games 2022.”
“After a scintillating performance by both the Indian teams at the Tokyo Games, we are focusing on producing even better results at the Paris Olympic stage,” he added.