Rio de Janeiro, Aug 5: The Indian men's hockey team will skip tonight's opening ceremony of the Rio Olympics in order to keep fresh for its Group B lung-opener against Ireland scheduled tomorrow (August 6).
However, the women's team will participate in the ceremony. "We have a match tomorrow, so we don't want to drain the players since the ceremony will go on for long," Hockey India President Narinder Batra told PTI. (Full schedule of India's hockey fixtures)
But sources in the team said the side has decided to skip the ceremony due to the lack of official kit for the ceremony.
"The kit that was handed to the players has not fit most of them. The players didn't have the time to check the fittings since they reached Rio quite late and were given the kit on the day they started their trip," a source said.
The men's hockey team, which last won an Olympic medal in the 1980 Games (gold), is aiming to end the medal drought riding on a good build-up to the Games.