India will take on New Zealand in the bronze medal-match of 2017 Sultan Azlan Shah Cup at the Azlan Shah Stadium in Ipoh on Saturday.
The Men in Blue are heading into the match on the back of a shock 1-0 defeat to hosts Malaysia, which also ended their hopes of making the final of the ongoing tournament as they needed to win at least by a two-goal margin to join Australia in the final.
On the other hand, New Zealand's chances of making the final also ended yesterday when they lost their final round-robin encounter 3-2 to Great Britain.
India coach Roelant Oltmans reportedly revealed that he was "very disappointed" with the performance of his boys yesterday especially after they threw away quite a few chances to take the lead. The sixth-ranked team missed three penalty corners in the first quarter and two more in last while Malaysia's Shahril Sabah converted one in the 51st minute, which became the decisive goal of the night.
Oltmans' men will have to put behind the loss and focus on the job in hand as they face New Zealand, who finished fourth after winning two from five games in the group stages. While both teams ended up with seven points each, India had scored nine, compared to New Zealand's seven.
Having beaten New Zealand 3-0 in their group meeting, India will be confident of another win over the Kiwis today. The duel between top-scorer Mandeep Singh (5) and Kane Russell (4) will also be in focus as a lot will depend on which one of them can help their team take the chances better on the big night.
Squad: Manpreet (c), Harmanpreet, Akash, Rupinder, Gurinder, Surender, Sardar, Mandeep, Sreejesh, Sumit, Manpreet (Jr), Talwinder, Harjeet, Pradeep, Sunil, Akashdeep, Chinglensana, Yousuf
Squad: Bennett, Brydon, Miskimmin, Ross, Joyce, Lane, Creffier, Keaney, Shaw, Manchester, Russsell, Elder, Panchia, Mitai-Wells, Jenness, Newman, Muir, Wilcox