Olympic bronze-medallist Vivek Sagar Prasad will lead the 18-strong Indian men’s hockey squad’s title defence at the FIH men’s junior World Cup starting in Bhubaneswar from November 24. India had won the last edition in 2016.

While the 21-year-old Vivek, who was part of India’s historic Olympic bronze medal winning senior team at Tokyo earlier this year, will captain the squad, defender Sanjay, who was part of the India U-18 team that won Silver at the Youth Olympic Games 2018 in Buenos Aires, will be the deputy.

The 18-member team includes Shardanand Tiwari, Prashant Chauhan, Sudeep Chirmako, Rahul Kumar Rajbhar, Maninder Singh, Pawan, Vishnukant Singh, Ankit Pal, Uttam Singh, Sunil Jojo, Manjeet, Rabichandra Singh Moirangthem, Abhishek Lakra, Yashdeep Siwach, Gurmukh Singh and Araijeet Singh Hundal.

Dinachandra Singh Moirangthem and Boby Singh Dhami have been chosen as alternate players who will be allowed to compete only if there is an injury or someone in the 18-member squad is ruled out of the tournament due to Covid-19.

India begin their campaign on November 24 against France. They will take on Canada a day later on November 25 in their second match in the round robin league. This will be followed by their match against Poland on November…

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