Rourkela, February 24: A confident India is up and ready to take on Australia in the FIH Hockey Pro League in their seventh match of the tournament here on Saturday. .

India kicked off their campaign in Bhubaneswar with a convincing 4-1 victory over Spain, followed by a thrilling 2-2 (4-2) shootout win against the Netherlands, the top-ranked team in the world. 

India then lost 4-6 to Australia but bounced back with a 1-0 triumph over Ireland to conclude the Bhubaneswar leg on a high. India then emerged triumphant against Spain in a shootout (8-7) after the score was tied at 2-2 in regulation time in their first match of the Rourkela leg.

 This was followed by another thrilling match that went to a penalty shootout after the score read 1-1 in regulation time with India losing the shootout to the Netherlands 2-4.

 Indians exuded optimism on the eve of their crucial match against Australia to whom they lost 4-6 in their last meeting which took place in Bhubaneswar earlier this month.

 India, however, will draw inspiration from the fact that they won on both occasions in Rourkela when the two faced off in the FIH Hockey Pro League winning the games 5-4 and 2-2(4-3 SO).

Speaking about the match, team goalkeeper  Krishan B Pathak said, "Our last encounter with Australia was a tightly contested game, and, unfortunately, we ended up on the wrong side. We've identified the areas that require improvement and are aware of what we need to do to turn the result in our favour this time."

“Everyone on the team is in a good headspace. We have played some good hockey and are playing well as a team. It’s a matter of taking control of those important moments. We will go out there and fight till the very end,” he concluded.

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