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Team to introspect debacle: Gagan Ajit

August 27, 2003 18:15 IST

Ace India hockey player Gagan Ajit Singh says the players will introspect and discuss with the coaches what went wrong in the Champions Trophy tournament and try to sort out the weaknesses.

"We will be sitting together soon and there will be an open discussion on what went wrong, especially when there were high hopes after our back-to-back wins," Gagan said.

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The captain of India's junior World Cup-winning team said the team's tendency to concede goals in the dying minutes of the game is of topmost concern and would be discussed threadbare.

"We have been doing well during the past few months but there are some areas where we need to improve upon. I am  hopeful we will overcome our shortcomings and do well in the forthcoming Asia Cup," he said.

Analysing the team's dismal performance at the recently-concluded Champions Trophy, where it finished fourth among six teams, he said, "The team's morale went very low after the shock defeat in the opening match. It was a setback, especially since we had almost won the match."

Gagan also said the forwards need to work on forcing penalty-corners. "This is an area where we have to do more homework," he said.

He agreed with captain Dhanraj Pillay's suggestion that the team needs the services of a sports psychologist.

"There is nothing wrong in this. If we have a psychologist it will help us deal with crunch situations in a better way," he said.

The forward dismissed the theory that the camp in Lucknow, just before the Champions Trophy, had taken its toll on the players.

"We were fully acclimatised to the conditions. To say that the camp went against us is not correct."

He also profusely thanked the media and the fans for having fully backed the team.

"I know there are high hopes from us. All we are saying is that a loss in one tournament does not mean it is the end of the road for Indian hockey. We should be given another chance to prove that we are among  the best in the world."

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