Indian Men's hockey team rises to fifth in FIH rankings, Women become highest-ranked Asian team at ninth place
Both the Indian men's and women's hockey teams improved their standings in the FIH rankings, with the women's team rising to ninth and the men's team reaching fifth place.
New Delhi: An impressive silver-medal finish at the Champions Trophy has helped the Indian men's hockey team jump one spot to fifth in the latest FIH rankings chart released on Tuesday.
India had lost to Australia via penalty shootout in the summit clash of the Champions Trophy after the two sides were locked 1-1 in regulation time in the Netherlands last month. India, which is defending its title at the upcoming Asian Games, is the only team which registered an upward movement among the top 10 teams. The Indian team, which now has 1484 points in its kitty, is above the likes of 2012 Olympic champions Germany, England and Spain.
World champion Australia maintained its top spot with 1906 points, ahead of Olympic champion Argentina (1883), Belgium (1709), the Netherlands (1654) and India. Germany, England, Spain, New Zealand and Ireland complete the top 10. The second best Asian team is Malaysia at number 12th and is followed by Pakistan and Korea.
In the women's rankings also, the Indian team gained one spot to rise to ninth. The team had lost to eventual runners-up Ireland in the quarterfinals of the Women's World Cup via penalty shootout on 2 August. The Indian women's team is the ranked highest in Asia, ahead of the likes of Korea (10th), China (11th) and Japan (14th).
World champions Netherlands remained on top, ahead of England, Australia, Argentina and Germany. The Irish team, which surprised many by reaching the final of the World Cup, jumped eight places to be at eighth spot.
Goalkeeper Savita will lead the side in the absence of Rani Rampal, who has been rested to recover from a hamstring injury.
Keeping in mind selection of players for the upcoming World Cup, Hockey India has called 66 players for the junior women's camp, set to begin at the Sports Authority of India in Bengaluru from Monday.
Since regular skipper Rani Rampal is recovering from an injury in Bengaluru, Savita will lead the side in the tournament, which is scheduled to be held between January 21-28 at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex.