Commonwealth Games: Veteran Sardar Singh dropped from 18-member squad
Veteran hockey ace player Sardar Singh has been omitted from India's 18-member squad for the upcoming Commonwealth Games. Alongside Sardar, forward Ramandeep Singh too faced the axe. The duo will miss the 21st Commonwealth Games in Australia. India finished 5th in the recently concluded Sultan Azlan Shah Cup and the coaches feel it is the right decision to drop Sardar.
Sardar led the Indian team at the Azlan Shah tourney but did not hold the authority in midfield. India's chief coach Sjoerd Marijne has cited that he feels that omitting Sardar and Ramandeep is the best way to go forward. With the Asian Games and the Hockey World Cup scheduled to take place in 2018, it will be a big miss for the players.
The men's team finished runners-up at the four-nation tournament in New Zealand that included Japan and Belgium. They lost in penalty-shootout against Belgium. In the Azlan Shah Cup, India finished fifth after losing to the top sides in the world including Argentina and Australia.
Indian midfielder Manpreet Singh will lead the 18-member squad at the upcoming 2018 Commonwealth Games. For India experienced campaigners SV Sunil and PR Sreejesh made a return to the side. K Chinglensena Singh will be the vice-captain for the side. India have been clubbed with Pakistan, Malaysia, Wales and England in Group B. India's first match is scheduled to happen on April 7.