New Delhi, May 2 (UNI) Penalty corner specialist Sandeep Singh was today recalled while forwards Rajpal Singh and Prabhjot Singh were axed from the 18-member Indian hockey team to be led by Tushar Khandekar for the 7-nation Sultan Azlan Shah tournament slated to be played at Ipoh (Malaysia) from May 8 to 18.
Sandeep Singh, returns to the team after a gap of one year. He was not considered for Asia Cup and later for the Olympic qualifying tournament as well.
The selection committee, set up by the Indian Olympic Association under the chairmanship of Aslam Sher Khan, this evening picked up the team which is a blend of youth and experience.
The team has been selected keeping in view of the Junior Asia Cup to be held in Hyderabad later this year and Juniuor World Cup slated for next year at Johar Baru (Malaysia) and Singapore.
India had won the Junior World Cup in 2001 at Hobart (Australia) but had finished fourth in the last edition of the Junior World Cup held in Roterdam (Holland)in 2005.
Seven players picked up for this team - Diwakar Ram, Innocent Kullu, Sameer Baxla, Ranjeet Singh, Cheeyane A D, Gurvinder Singh Chendi and Mandip Antil- were part of the squad which represented India in the U-21 Eight-Nation tournament held in Malaysia couple of months ago in which Diwakar Ram had emerged as the top scorer.
Apart from Rajpal Singh and Prabhjot Singh, the other senior players who have not been considered for the selection are Adrian D'souza, Bharat Chetri, William Xalxo, Bimal Lakra. Former skippers Dilip Tirkey and Prabodh Tirkey had opted out for personal reasons.
Though, A K Bansal has been named as chief coach, Joaquiam Carvalho will accompany the team as advisor.
The team: Goal Keepers: Baljeet Singh, Sreejesh P R Defenders: Diwakar Ram, Sandeep Singh, Innocent Kullu, Sameer Baxla Mid Fielders: Sarvanjit Singh, Ranjeet Singh, Bikram Kanth, Sardar Singh, Cheeyana A B, Gurbaj Singh.
Forwards: Vivek, S V Sunil, Gurvinder Singh Chandi, Tushar Khandekar (Capt), Shivender Singh, Mandeep Antil.
Officials: Ric Charlseworth (Adviser), A K Bansal (chief coach), Rajesh Chauhan (Coach), Ramesh Parameshwaran (Asst Coach), R K Shetty (Manager), Joaquiam Carvalho (Observer) Shrikant Iyenger (Physio), M V Mathai (Trainer), C S Jayaprakash (Doctor), H S Sokhi (Judge), Parnam Singh (Umpire).
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