New Delhi: The senior team's gold at the just-concluded Asian Games after a hiatus of 16 years will inspire the Indian colts to defend its Sultan of Johor Cup title to begin in Johor Bahru, Malaysia on October 12, said junior men's side captain Harjeet Singh.
A spirited India outclassed arch-rivals Pakistan 4-2 in a nerve-wrecking shoot-out to regain the Asian Games men's hockey gold medal after a gap of 16 years and also seal a direct entry into the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.
And Harjeet said he and his teammates want to acknowledge the seniors achievement by retaining the Sultan of Johor Cup title.
"Our team is upbeat at the moment and we are looking forward to retaining the title for India. We are also inspired by our senior team and want to bring home the trophy as an acknowledgment to the pride they have brought to the country and add to the glory of the game," Harjeet said on the sidelines of the team's practice session at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium here.
"We have been working on our technique and strategies for the past few months and are confident of implementing those strategies on ground, against our opponents."
India's junior men's team coach Harendra Singh the Asian Games gold of the senior team has come as a motivation for the junior colts ahead of the Johor Cup.
"The young players are motivated by the senior team's gold in the recently-concluded Asian Games and also want to achieve similar feat in the upcoming tournament. We are the defending champions and have set new targets for this tournament and we are working day and night to achieve those targets," he said.
"We are preparing in the right direction for the Sultan of Johor Cup and the players are prepared. Our aim is to play good hockey and utilise all our opportunities during matches."
The fourth edition of the tournament will see six teams clashing for the title and the matches are scheduled to be played at Taman Daya Hockey Stadium at Johor Bahru, Malaysia from October 12 to 19.
The Indian colts are scheduled to depart for Malaysia on October 9.