Birmingham, July 31: The Indian men's hockey team's opening match at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games against Ghana witnessed Captain Manpreet Singh achieving the milestone of completing 300 International Caps for India.
Hailing from Mithapur near Jalandhar, Punjab, Manpreet made his international debut for the men’s team in 2011 at the age of 19. Since then he has represented the country at all major tournaments and featured in some of India’s greatest victories.
The experienced midfielder for a long time has been one of the key figures in the Indian team. In his career spanning over 11 years, Manpreet has led the Indian Men's team to many successes including the historic Bronze medal win at the Tokyo Olympic Games, which also ended the country's 41-year medal drought in the quadrennial Games. He was also the flagbearer of the Indian contingent at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
Under his Captaincy, India has also won Bronze at the 2018 Asian Games, Silver at the 2018 Champions Trophy, Gold at the 2018 Asian Champions Trophy, Winner's in the FIH Series Finals in 2019 and Bronze at the 2021 Asian Champions Trophy.
For his achievements, the Indian Captain was conferred with the Arjuna Award in 2018, FIH Player Of the Year (Men's Category) in 2019 and won the prestigious Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna award in 2021.
Speaking about this incredible milestone, Manpreet expressed, "This is a very special moment for me and my family. This also reminds me that I've come a long way and there is still a long way to go. It is with great pride and honour that I wear the Indian jersey, and it really motivates me whenever I put on this jersey. It's been a wonderful journey so far, and I thank each and everyone who has been part of it. I hope to continue to give my best for the country.
"It's a great feeling to achieve this milestone at a prestigious event. It will certainly motivate me to give my absolute best for the team to achieve our goal of winning the maiden Gold medal at the Commonwealth Games. But for that, we will focus on one match at a time, and give our 100% on the pitch," he added.
Congratulating Manpreet on completing 300 International matches, Indian Men's Team Chief Coach Graham Reid said, "Manpreet has been one of the most influential figures in the team. He is someone who leads by example, and youngsters in India and around the globe really look up to him.
"Achieving 300 International Caps is a huge feat, he has worked really hard and made lots of sacrifices to be here. I congratulate him on this incredible milestone and I wish him the very best for the future," signed off Reid.
Source: Hockey India