The defender stated that her historic goal against Australia at the Tokyo Olympics was a team effort.

Drag-flick specialist Gurjit Kaur, who was one of the architects of the Indian women’s hockey team’s fourth place finish at the recently concluded Tokyo Olympics, has been nominated for the FIH Women’s Player of the Year Award 2020-21.

The 25-year-old defender etched her name in the history of world hockey following her heroics in the Tokyo Olympics quarter-final match. She scored a match-winning goal from a penalty corner in India’s historic 1-0 win over Australia, which earned the Indian women’s hockey team a place in their first-ever semi-final at the Olympic Games.

Speaking on her nomination for FIH Women’s Player of the Year Award 2020-21, Gurjit Kaur expressed, “It’s a huge achievement for me to be nominated for the FIH Women’s Player of the Year Award 2020-2021. For an athlete, it’s one of the best moments when all your hard work and sacrifices get recognised at a world level, and I am really happy to see my name on that list. It will give me extra motivation to do even better for the team.”

When asked about that decisive goal against Australia, which helped the Indian eves script history at Olympic Games, Gurjit Kaur said, “I think that’s my job, and I just did it. My job is to drag-flick, and I got a chance, which I converted.”

 “No doubt, there is my name on the scoresheet, but that doesn’t mean it was mine alone, it was a team goal. Each one of us contributed to it, from the defence line to midfielders, to strikers, who created the penalty corner, and eventually, it was my responsibility to convert it,” she added. 

The Indian women’s hockey team missed out on the Olympic medal by a whisker, having lost to Great Britain in the bronze medal play-off match. However, the Amritsar-born player feels that there are a lot of positives to take from this dream campaign. Gurjit Kaur said, “Even though we missed out on winning the medal by a whisker, there are a lot of positives to take from this dream campaign.”

“People have started watching us, and I am sure our performance will inspire young girls to take up hockey. The Tokyo Olympics 2020 marks the beginning of a new era of Indian hockey. We have gained a lot of confidence, we have become fearless, and going forward it will certainly help us perform well in major tournaments. I also hope we get the same amount of love and respect going forward,” she concluded.

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