India women's national field hockey team

The Indian women's national field hockey team (nicknamed the Nabhvarna) is ranked 9th in the FIH World Rankings.The team is ranked constantly as one of the best team in Asia. The team has won the gold medal at the 1982 Asian Games.India has won the Asia Cup two times in 2004, 2017 and the Asian Champions Trophy in 2016. The team has also won the gold medal at the 2002 Commonwealth Games.

  • "नभवर्णा/Nabhvarna"
AssociationHockey India
ConfederationASHF (Asia)
CoachSjoerd Marijne
Assistant coach(es)Erik Wonink
ManagerKumar C. R.
CaptainRani Rampal
FIH ranking
Current 9 (2 June 2021)[1]
Olympic Games
Appearances1 (first in 1980)
Best result4th (1980)
World Cup
Appearances7 (first in 1974)
Best result4th (1974)
Asian Games
Appearances10 (first in 1982)
Best result1st (1982)
Asia Cup
Appearances8 (first in 1989)
Best result1st (2004, 2017)

Performance history

India women's national field hockey team, in 2017

The team's breakthrough performance came at the Women's Hockey World Cup at Mandelieu in 1974, where it finished in 4th place. Their best performance in the Olympic Games was at 1980 Moscow Summer Olympics (where they came in 4th), when a women's event was held for the first time in Olympic history. The team also won the Gold medal at the inaugural 1982 Asian Games held in New Delhi, defeating Korea in the finals. Captain Suraj Lata Devi led the team to the Gold for three consecutive years at different events- during the 2002 Commonwealth Games,[2] the 2003 Afro-Asian Games, and the 2004 Women's Hockey Asia Cup. Team members were referred to as the "assi (Jasjeet) jaisi koi nahi" or the "Golden Girls of Hockey," after the 2004 win.[3] The team earned a 3rd-place finish at the 2013 Women's Hockey Asia Cup at Kuala Lumpur defeating China in a shootout.[4] At the 2014 Commonwealth Games, it finished in 5th place but at 2014 Asian Games, Incheon stunned Japan 2-1 in a tight match to clinch their third bronze medal at the Asian Games.[5] During the summer of 2015, the team hosted the Round 2 of the 2014–15 Women's FIH Hockey World League and finished on top to qualify for the next stage. At the World League Semifinals held in Antwerp the team finished in the fifth place beating higher ranked Japan in classification match.[6] The Indian woman's national field hockey team qualified for the 2016 Summer Olympics[7][8] for the first time since the 1980 Summer Olympics.[7][9] They were eliminated in the group stage, however, where they placed 6th.

2002 Commonwealth Games and Chak De! India (2007)

The 2002 Commonwealth Games Squad, led by Captain Suraj Lata Devi, competed in the 2002 Commonwealth Games. The team entered the finals after defeating the Australian women's national field hockey team[10] and placed first, winning the Gold after they beat the English women's hockey team.[2][11][12]

This event served as the inspiration for the 2007 Bollywood film about women's field hockey, Chak De! India starring Shah Rukh Khan (after screenwriter Jaideep Sahni read a short article about it).[13] Sahani began to model the character of Kabir Khan on hockey coach Maharaj Krishan Kaushik.[14] After hearing the storyline, Kaushik suggested that Sahani meet hockey player Mir Ranjan Negi (who faced accusations of throwing the match against Pakistan during the 1982 Asian Games).[15][16][17] Sahani has stated that he was unaware of Negi's tribulations while writing the script and that the resemblance with Negi's life was entirely coincidental.[18] Negi affirmed this point stating that he didn't "want to hog the limelight. This movie is not a documentary of Mir Ranjan Negi's life. It is in fact the story of a team that becomes a winning lot from a bunch of hopeless girls".[19] In response to the fact that the media equated Kabir Khan with Negi, Sahani said that "Our script was written a year and a half back. It is very unfortunate that something, which is about women athletes, has just started becoming about Negi."[14]

Medal Table

Tournament Gold Silver Bronze Total
Commonwealth Games1102
Asian Games1236
Hockey Asia Cup2226
Asian Champions Trophy1214
Hockey Champions Challenge0011
Afro-Asian Games1001
FIH Hockey Series1001
South Asian Games1001