In a big blow to the Indian hockey team, star goal keeper PR Sreejesh will be out of action for at least five months. This prognosis was made following a knee surgery, which means he definitely miss the Asia Cup which will be held in Dhaka later this year.
His absence was felt by the team in the recently concluded Hockey World League Semi Final which was held in London. Sreejesh injured himself in the Sulan Azlan Cup in May and now faces a struggle to get fit for the Asia Cup.
By Indian hockey’s high performance director David John believes that Sreejesh could make it to the Hockey World League Final.
“We missed Sreejesh badly. Vikas Dahiya and Akash Chikte are young and they are no match for top goalkeepers of the world. We need to develop our second line of keepers in the next six months.
“Sreejesh is out of action. He underwent a surgery under Dr Anant Joshi 10 days back in Mumbai and he will need at least 5 to 6 months to return to full fitness,” John said.
“Sreejesh will definitely miss the Asia Cup but we will try our best to make him fully fit before the all-important Hockey World League Final in December. But it also give us time to work with and develop our reserve keepers,” he said.
“We need to work on our defence. We need to find some faster defenders because in London we were caught in counter attacks by Malaysia and Canada for lack of speed,” he said.
“We also need to work on our conversions. Throughout the tournament we had far more opportunities in and around opposition circle, we had far more chances. We had high number of circle penetrations. We need to improve our efficiency in scoring,” John added.