Indian hockey teams placed in easier pools at Asiad

New Delhi: Indian hockey teams have been placed in comparatively easier pools in the upcoming Asian Games, with the men set to face minnows Hong Kong, while the women will begin their campaign against hosts Indonesia, it was revealed on Monday.

The Indian men’s team has been clubbed in Pool A alongside Korea, Japan, Sri Lanka and Hong Kong, while Pool B consists of Malaysia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Oman, Thailand and Indonesia.

After facing Hong Kong on August 22, the Indians, coached by former international Harendra Singh, will play Japan on August 24 followed by matches against South Korea (August 26) and Sri Lanka (August 28).

Sjoerd Marijne-coached women’s team is in Pool B alongside title holders South Korea, Thailand, Kazakhstan and Indonesia. Pool A features China, Japan, Malaysia, Hong Kong and Chinese Taipei.

The Indian women’s team will open its campaign with a match against hosts Indonesia on August 19, followed by games against Kazakhstan (August 21), Korea (August 25) and Thailand (August 27).

The 18th edition of the Asian Games will see the highest ever number of participating teams in the history of hockey competitions at the continental event.

A total of 21 teams from 14 countries will go head to head in the men’s and women’s categories in 60 matches over a course of 14 days.

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