Since few years Hockey India League (HIL) has managed to become a roaring success and now it is no less charming than any cricket or other sports league, for that matter. Out of all the HIL teams, Kalinga Lancers too had its share of highs and lows, with the major upside being its announcement of runners up in the 2016 edition.
Now with HIL 2017 all set to roll on again from January 21 – February 26, people from Odisha specially are expecting much out of Kalinga Lancers and its list of stellar players.
Of all the matches that will be played by this team from Odisha, a total of five home matches are scheduled to be held at Kalinga Stadium, Bhubaneswar. Their first match will be on 22nd January against Delhi Waveriders, who championed the 2014 league of HIL. In their next, Lancers will face the Ranchi Rays on 23rd January followed by its third home match against UP Wizards on January 29th. Their fourth will be a match versus Jaypee Punjab Warriors on February 3rd and will finish off their home league journey on 5th February against Dabang Mumbai.
Coming to the player list and strategies of Kalinga Lancers, attacking will be their real strength with the major emphasis being on mid-fielders and forwards. The forward pairing of Glenn Turner and Captain Moritz Fuerste will especially be vital to push the team towards the winning side. That apart, Indian forward Malak Singh, Lalit Kumar Upadhyay and Olympian Devinder Walmiki will too be witnessed in the forward line-up!
Interestingly enough, Kalinga Lancers will even consist of certain Australian players who have the ability to play different roles at the same time. Also the goal guarding by Australia’s Andrew Charter and India’s Abhinav Pandey will see to it that there’s no space for easy goal making by the opponents.
Kalinga Lancers also boast of some pretty young talents from Odisha who shine in the defensive side of the game. Amit Rohidas, Dipsan Tirkey, Anand Lakra and Neelam Sanjeep Xess are among the noted players from this state who are all set to make an impact. Hockey fans from Bhubaneswar and Odisha will surely set their eyes on these four players when the tournament sets in action. The defense side will even include penalty corner specialist Gurjinder Singh and Pardeep Mor in the team.
We truly cannot wait for the thrill to begin in this new season of Hockey India League that will have some spectacular matches on display. Hoping the best for Kalinga Lancers and wishing them to clinch their first victorious title this year!