The 20-year-old thinks she is ready to be a part of the senior team’s set-up.
Ishika Chaudhary is considered by many as the backbone of the Indian junior women’s hockey team. The midfielder believes that she is ready to take the next step in her career, but puts Junior Women’s Asia Cup on the number one spot on her priority list.
She started playing the sport at the age of 11 and graduated from the Madhya Pradesh Hockey Academy. Ishika Chaudhary is one of the brightest prospects in the junior hockey team. Her journey from being an academy player to turning into one of the mainstays of the junior team has been smooth, but the youngster credits her development to her coaches and family.
“When I first started, I didn’t know how my initial years of my hockey career would pan out, but I think my coaches and my family helped along the way. As a young player, you always want to get the right advice and learn from the best, and I’m so happy to have so many great people around me. You can see that in the journey that I’ve had so far,” stated Ishika Chaudhary, who idolizes Indian women’s hockey team member Reena Khokhar and fellow midfielder and FIH Women’s Player of the Year 2019, Netherlands’ Eva de Goede.
It was in 2016 when Ishika Chaudhary was selected to be a part of the Madhya Pradesh Hockey Academy’s senior team which ended up winning the Bronze medal at the 6th Hockey India Senior National Championship 2016 held in Bengaluru. Good performances made her stand-out and receive a call-up to the junior national camp, and the youngster from Gwalior hasn’t looked back ever since.
She recalled, “When I look back, I think that selection for the senior nationals was one of the turning points in my career. It paved the way for my Junior India call-up and I am so happy that I have been able to perform well for my country since making my junior team debut in 2017 at the Australian Hockey League (Women).”
Ishika Chaudhary’s CV now boasts of her part of the team that won the Cantor Fitzgerald U21 4-Nations tournament 2019 held in Ireland and the 3-Nations Tournament 2019 held in Australia, as well as the runners up at the 6-Nations Invitational Tournament 2018 held in Belgium, but the bright Midfielder has already set her sight on a new target.
“Like any other youngster, my eventual dream is to play for India and win a lot of trophies including medals at the Olympic Games. But at the same time, I am also focused on my immediate goal which is to win the 8th Junior Women’s Asia Cup and secure our berth at the 2021 Junior Women’s World Cup. I think securing that win would be a great reflection of how much we have developed as a team,” she concluded.