Indian women’s hockey team will feature in this month’s FIH Nations Cup.

Indian women’s team are all set to undergo another major test this month with the FIH Nations Cup hockey tournament set to begin on December 11. Savita Punia will continue to lead the side while Deep Grace Ekka will be her deputy. Before this much-awaited tournament, let us take a look at the top 10 Indian players with the most appearances to date. Here they are:

10. Monika Malik – 187 appearances

Midfielder Monika Malik represented India in the 2014 Asian Games and was a part of the bronze-medal winning squad. She has played 187 games for India to date and earned laurels for the country. She is an Arjuna Awardee and would look to give her best in the upcoming tournament

9. Navjot Kaur – 202 appearances

Another midfielder Navjot Kaur is ninth on the list with 202 appearances for India. Unfortunately, the 27-year-old couldn’t make it to the squad of CWG 2022 where the women won the bronze medal. But the Kurukshetra-born player is looking forward to the FIH Nations cup which is important for the country to qualify for the FIH Women’s Pro League.

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8. Poonam Rani – 204 appearances

Poonam Rani is one of the most experienced players in the India setup but currently is out of the squad. She has played for India on 204 occasions and has earned so much reputation. The Hisar-based woman played for India in the 2016 Summer Olympics.

7. Sushila Chanu – 220 appearances

Sushila Chanu was the only player from Manipur who was a part of the Tokyo Olympics. She has 220 appearances for India and is set to play for more years in the coming future. She is a part of the squad that is going to Valencia, Spain for the FIH Nations Cup.

6. Surinder Kaur – 229 appearances

Known for her rich experience, Surinder Kaur is one of the finest players that has ever played the game for India. She won the gold medal in the 2004 Hockey Asia Cup. The Arjuna Awardee has appeared for India 229 times and is sixth on the list.

5. Ritu Rani – 248 appearances

One of the youngest-ever captains of the Indian team, Ritu Rani was a part of the national squad from the age of 14. She has led the team to some medal-winning performances most notably the bronze medal at the 2014 Asian Games.

4. Rani Rampal – 250 appearances

Rani Rampal was the youngest one in the squad that played in the 2010 World Cup. She was just 15 at that time. Recently, the woman from Shahbad was dropped from the World Cup squad and is yet to find her place in the team now. She has appeared in 250 matches for India.

3. Deep Grace Ekka – 252 appearances

Deep Grace Ekka played an important role in making India win the bronze medal in CWG 2022. Earlier she was recommended for the Arjuna Award in 2022 for her contribution to the game. Now, the woman from Odisha is set to give her team a victory in the FIH Nations Cup. She is currently the vice-captain of the squad.

2. Savita Punia – 255 appearances

Captain of the women’s hockey team, Savita Punia is also known as the ‘Great Wall of India’ because of her phenomenal performance in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics as a goalkeeper. She has been awarded the prestigious Arjuna Award for her remarkable contribution to the game. Savita has so far appeared in 255 games for India.

1. Vandana Kataria – 276 appearances

Veteran forward player Vandana Kataria has earned various laurels for the country over the years. She has been awarded the Arjuna Award, and Padma Shri in the past. Vandana rose to prominence in 2-13 where she was the top goal-scorer for the side in the 2013 Women’s Hockey Junior World Cup. She has played 276 matches for India to date which is the most by any Indian woman. She is a part of the upcoming major tournament where the experienced player would give her everything to make India victorious.

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