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Injury puts Xalxo out
April 04, 2006 21:02 IST
Defender William Xalxo has been ruled out of the four-nation invitational men's hockey tournament in Monchengladbach, Germany, from April 15 to 17, due to an ankle injury.
Xalxo, who has been carrying the injury for quite some time, aggravated it further during the Commonwealth Games and now requires a month's break for it to heal.
"It was a minor niggle which got aggravated during the Commonwealth Games. It is likely to take a month to heal up completely," Xalxo said.
New coach V Bhaskaran said that the full back had informed him about his unavailability.
"He informed me about his injury in the afternoon today and sought to skip the tour," Bhaskaran said.
However, the coach expressed satisfaction over the way the preparation camp took off in Gurgaon on Tuesday.
"We had two practice sessions and it was interesting working with the players," he said.
Vikram Pillay and Shivendra Singh are yet to join the team.
"They are expected to join tonight or tomorrow," Bhaskaran said.
"The Germany event may be a three-day tournament, but since we have 10 days left for preparation, I would take it seriously," he added.
Star striker Gagan Ajit Singh will lead the 18-member Indian squad, which includes drag-flicker Jugraj Singh.
Ignace Tirkey, who led the team at the just-concluded Melbourne Commonwealth Games and bilateral series against Pakistan, midfielder Viren Rasquinha, defender Harpal Singh, forwards Didar Singh and Deepak Thakur are the notable omissions from the squad that performed miserably in Australia.
IHF secretary K Jothikumaran said Ignace and Harpal were not picked because of fitness problems while the aforementioned others could return for future tournaments.
"We have not dropped anybody. Ignace and Dilip Tirkey are injured while Harpal is down with chicken pox. Players like Deepak can be considered in future tournaments," he said after the team was announced on Monday.
Jothikumaran also justified the inclusions of Jugraj and Gagan Ajit saying both are playing well of late.
"Jugraj has been very good in domestic tournaments while Gagan is playing well in the Dutch league and that is the reason behind picking them," he said.
Goalkeepers: Bharat Chettri, Baljit Singh
Full-backs: Sandeep Singh, Kanwalpreet Singh, Jugraj Singh.
Half-backs: Vikram Pillay, Prabodh Tirkey, Arjun Halappa, Sardara Singh, Ajmer Singh
Forwards: Rajpal Singh, Tushar Khandekar, Tejbir Singh, Hari Prasad, Adam Sinclair, Shivendra Singh and Gagan Ajit Singh.
Officials: V Bhaskaran (chief coach), Harendra Singh (coach), M R Negi (goalkeeping coach), Ravi Kanakamedala (physio), G M Srivastava (manager).