Focus will be on finishing and maintaining structure: India hockey captain Harmanpreet

London:  Captain Harmanpreet Singh on Thursday said that India can bounce despite back-to-back defeats if the team converts the goal-scoring chances and maintains structure in its coming games in the men’s FIH Hockey Pro League.

India, who had come to Europe as table toppers, lost 1-2 to Olympic champions Belgium in their first match and went down 2-4 against Great Britain to drop down to second position.

They face Belgium again here on Friday before taking on table-toppers Great Britain on Saturday. Great Britain have 25 points from 10 matches while India have accumulated 19 points from 10 matches.

“We are not letting the two losses last week play on our minds. We still have six more matches to play and we know that if we play to the structure and execute good finishes, we will be able to return to the top of the pool table,” Harmanpreet said ahead of the match against Belgium.

Despite the defeats, Harmanpreet said his team did have some takeaways from the two matches.

“Both opponents play very different styles. While one (Belgium) plays zonal, the other (GB) plays man-to-man. But there were some takeaways from those two matches,” said Harmanpreet, who achieved the milestone of being the most prolific goal-scorer in the history of Pro League with 35 goals.

“Though we didn’t create that many field goals, we did get some good PCs. There are some areas we also worked on, in these past few days and focus will continue to be on defending well,” he added.

India vice-captain Hardik Singh also highlighted the efforts of newcomers in the squad.

“I think after the Rourkela matches, there was a bit of a gap to play highly competitive matches. It will take some time particularly for the youngsters to settle in and make the right connections to score goals.

“This is a big platform for youngsters like Sukhjeet, Karthi and even Abhishek who are playing in London for the first time and Sanjay also had a good debut.

“There are a lot of positives from the first two matches here which they will be working on to carry forward in the upcoming matches,” said the young mid-fielder.