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Manpreet to lead young Indian team in Azlan Shah Cup

 NEW DELHI, March 6: India on Wednesday named a relatively young 18-member team to be led by midfielder Manpreet Singh for the 28th Sultan Azlan Shah Cup after several key players were ruled out of the prestigious hockey tournament due to injuries.

Manpreet will be assisted by a new deputy in defender Surender Kumar in this year’s Azlan Shah Cup to be held in Ipoh, Malaysia from March 23 to 30.

Apart from India and hosts Malaysia, the other participating nations are Canada, Korea, South Africa, Asian Games gold medallists Japan.

India, which starts its campaign against Japan on March 23, will miss the services of experienced forwards SV Sunil, Akashdeep Singh, Ramandeep Singh, Lalit Upadhyay, besides defenders Rupinder Pal Singh, Harmanpreet Singh as well as midfielder Chinglensana Singh, who all were sidelined due to injuries.

Two junior players Vishal Antil and Pardeep Singh also missed the cut owing to injuries.

According to a statement from Hockey India, all the injured players will continue their rehabilitation at the Sports Authority of India South Centre in Bengaluru.

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