Alongside the host nation, India, China, Chinese Taipei, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Oman, Pakistan and Uzbekistan are scheduled to take part
Bangladesh U-21 hockey team coach Mamunur Rashid said they are eyeing a good display at the Bangabandhu U-21 Junior Hockey Championship as the national camp began Saturday at Maulana Bhasani National Stadium in Dhaka.
A total of 36 players reported to Mamunur but training will not begin immediately as everyone has to undergo Covid-19 tests in the next few days.
After the Covid-19 testing, the players will move to the Bangladesh Air Force base for the residential camp.
The tournament will be hosted by Bangladesh from January 21-30, meaning Mamunur has a little over three months for preparation.
He said, “The team must be prepared by this time. I have 80-85 days time in hand. We have a lot of good players. We will first work on fitness. I hope we will play well at our own turf. To do that, we have to fare well against well against top teams like India and (South) Korea. And we have that strength.
Alongside the host nation, India, China, Chinese Taipei, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Oman, Pakistan and Uzbekistan are scheduled to take part.
The top three teams will qualify for the Junior Hockey World Cup in India.
Mamunur hoped for some quality practice matches before the tournament begins.
“We can rectify our early mistakes if we can play against big teams like India and Korea before the competition. We can take preparation accordingly after assessing our performance in the warm-up games,” said Mamunur.
One of leading players of the side, Fazle Rabbi echoed the same sentiment, saying, “I am hopeful. Good result is possible if we can train properly. We were not in practice for a long time due to corona. We are about to begin full-fledged training.”