The last meeting between these two teams ended in a stalemate.

The Indian men’s hockey team will be up against England in their second game of the FIH Odisha Men’s Hockey World Cup 2023 on January 15th at Rourkela. The match is scheduled to begin at 07:00 PM IST. 

The Indian team recently played a test series against Australia in Australia where they lost the five-match series 4-1. But the scoreline does not tell the full story as the Indian team put pressure on the Kookaburras through the series, only coming out short due to Australia’s brilliant display of skills inside their opponent’s half. 

England, meanwhile, has not played any hockey since their exit from the Commonwealth Games 2022 semi-final where they lost to Australia 3-2 in controversial circumstances. England before playing against India will be up against their neighbours Wales on the opening day of the competition. 

India are waiting for their first Gold medal in the World Cup since winning it for the first time in 1975 while England are looking to get their hands on the coveted trophy for the first time. They finished 4th in 2018.

Plenty of chances but no finished product

Recent Performances 

England reached the semi-finals of the Birmingham 2022 CWG games where they lost to Australia 3-2. They took a 2-0 lead but the Kangaoors came back from behind to win the game. Though, in a controversial fashion as the English team was not fully convinced of Australia’s 3rd goal. In the bronze medal match they beat South Africa 6-3 to clinch the 3rd place. 

About the team 

England are 5th in the FIH men’s hockey rankings. They have never won the World Cup and are looking for their first title. 

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Paul Revington was appointed as the head coach of the team in April 2022. He is a former FIH World Coach of the Year who previously worked for Malaysia Hockey, as a Technical Director. He was previously Head Coach of the Great Britain women’s Elite Development Programme and Assistant Coach of the England and Great Britain senior women’s teams. Prior to that, Paul was Malaysia’s men’s head coach, having previously led Ireland’s senior men and led his home South Africa to the Olympics in 2004.

Players to watch

Nic Bandurak

The young forward of the English team has already become one of their best players in the forward line. He has scored 21 goals in the England shirt in just 20 appearances. Bandurak was the leading goal scorer in CWG 2022 with 11 goals in the tournament. He also scored two goals against India in Commonwealth Games. The game ended in a tie with the final score being 4-4. His two goals helped his side to make a comeback into the game. They were 3-1 down in the final quarter. He has been in great form as was evident by his performance for Great Britain in the FIH Pro League. 

Harry Martin

Martin has been a vital member of the England squad since making his debut in July 2010 at the age of 17. He competed in the London Olympics in 2012, and despite being the only teenager on the team, he was instrumental in Great Britain nearly missing out on a medal. Harry’s performances that year were so good that he was nominated for the 2012 FIH World Young Player of the Year award. He is the most experienced player in the England team and he would have the responsibility to handle his team’s defences. 

What to expect

It won’t be a cakewalk for the Indian team by any means. England is ranked just one above India so it means that it is going to be a close contest between the two sides. England showed that they are not a side to give up early in the group stage game against India in the Commonwealth Games 2022 where despite being 3-0 down they levelled the score to 3-3. India then scored the 4th goal only for England to hit back and score the equaliser. 

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