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For all the latest Opinion News,press for the early goal.India defence has held up so far 2055 hrs IST: Good start fromIndia They attacked and defended wellbut both teams have failed to score 2045 hrs IST:Time for the national anthem Both teams out in the middle Build Up # India vs Belgium men’s hockey preview: India take on mighty Belgium in quarterfinals India will need to be on top of their game if they are to qualify in the final stages of the tournament and ensure a medal for the country (Source: Reuters) The Indian men’s hockey team will take on Begium in the quarterfinals of the Rio 2016 Olympics on Sunday starting 21:00 hrs IST India are coming to the round of 8 stage with am inconsistent run of performances On Sunday the team will play one of their biggest matches if they are to qualify for the semis The feat will ensure a chance to Roelant Oltmans’ team to enter the semifinals of the Olympics for the first time since the 1980 Moscow Games The Belgians are in affluent form as they have scored 21 goals in the five group matches at the Rio Games while conceding just two They have showed their class against strong teams like Australia Great Britain New Zealand as well as the home team Brazil India might have won the Gold medal in the Asian Games but their recent matches against Holland and Canada have dented some hopes in the camp They will need to be on top of their game if they are to qualify in the final stages of the tournament and ensure a medal for the country “Now the real Olympics starts because there is no chance for any losses It is now all about winning the matches So it is more important to concentrate on the positive side and sharpen your weak points because you cannot afford any mistake from over there So it is always important to perform well in the quarter-finals” said captain PR Sreejesh Sreejesh has led the squad well in the group matches India’s defensive measures are key to holding the Red Lions in the knockout stage on Sunday “As a team I think we are performing really well We are showing improvement I think we have gained a lot of confidence from the past matches And I think that is going to help us in the quarterfinals I think winning a match is more important for us now a days and gaining some points in the lay ground that makes the difference in the quarterfinals” added Sreejesh # On medal path in Rio India face Belgium’s golden generation India’s foward line will have to fire in Sunday’s quarterfinal vs Belgium to make it into their first semifinal after 36 years (Source: PTI) Tonight India will play its biggest match in nearly two decades Roelant Oltmans’ side meets Belgium in the quarterfinals of the Rio Games and a win will mean India will enter the semifinals of the Olympics for the first time since the 1980 Moscow Games The closest the national team has come to reaching the last four was at the Sydney Olympics India have given a good account of themselves so far — barring the last league encounter against Canada — but Belgium are a completely different prospect They have been a thorn in India’s flesh in the last few tournaments playing defensively strong hockey which India has found extremely tough to deal with In the last few encounters Belgium have beaten India by the narrowest of margins – either 1-0 or 2-1 Their strategy has been simple – score an early goal and close the doors on India marking the forwards closely and not allowing an inch of extra space in the midfield Since their players are technically gifted Belgians make few errors But that doesn’t make them a defensive side The Red Lions are one of the most fluent attacking outfits At the Games so far they have scored 21 goals in the five group stage matches while conceded just two In the process they’ve eased past world champions Australia European giants Britain New Zealand and hosts Brazil Their only defeat came against an inspired New Zealand who have defied expectations themselves After years of showing promise the golden generation of Belgian hockey finally seems to be living up to its potential So India will have to bring their A game to the table and perhaps even more The Asian Games gold medallists have been playing some of the finest hockey in recent years but the defeat to Holland and draw against lowly Canada have hampered their momentum But more than the uninspiring performance against Canada the other day the bigger concern for coach Oltmans and rest of the team would have been the fitness of forward SV Sunil During one of his dashes to Canada’s half Sunil couldn’t apply brakes and slammed into the advertising board hurting his wrist in the process Later in the day he spent nearly two hours at a hospital undergoing scans His teammates waited nervously at the village for the reports Finally late on Friday night it was revealed that Sunil would be fit for the quarterfinal His presence will be crucial for India as he is one of the few with the ability to run and dodge past the sturdy Belgian defence and raid their ‘D’ India’s right flank looked considerably weakened against Canada which under-lined the team’s dependence on Sunil’s speedy runs on the wings Luckily for them he has been declared fully fit for the encounter One of the hallmarks of India’s performance has been the smart use of the wings and clean tackling The injection of pace from the flanks – with Sunil on one side and Devinder Walmiki and Nikkin Thimmaiah on the other – has troubled the likes of reigning Olympic champions Germany and even Netherlands But one gets a feeling that India’s fate would be decided on how well they are able to defend against an extremely sharp Belgian attack with Tom Boon Tanguy Cosyns and Felix Denayer being the key masterminds Defensive discipline would be the key for India They have been able to maintain great defensive shape in the group stage another new aspect of the team that was struggling in this area till a year ago But even though they have played well for majority of the match India have crumbled under pressure especially in the final quarter in every match they have played Goalkeeper PR Sreejesh has been put under excessive pressure and the way they’ve been playing Belgium are best placed to exploit this shortcoming of the Indian team The players looked jaded against Canada after playing high-intensity matches the entire week But the rest day on Saturday would have rejuvenated them For Oltmans will want his side to be at its best if India are bury the ghosts of its past and enter the Olympics semifinals for the first time in 36 years For all the latest Sports News download Indian Express App IE Online Media Services Pvt Ltd More Related News Easy going for India. 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KL Rahul responds.Misfield from Maxwell but India do not run the second First runs on the board @mvj888 warming up ahead of Day ?#TeamIndia #INDvAUS @Paytm Test Cricket pictwittercom/1bwCCmmVmt — BCCI (@BCCI) March 26 2017 0930 hrs IST:Pat Cummins willstart the new day in Dharamsala with the ball Murali Vijay will be on strike for India who resume the day at noscore for no loss 0925 hrs IST:Important session of play coming up This can decide which way the Test match is heading as India have to bat well and make the most of the good work by their bowlers 0915 hrs IST:India batted only one over last evening and it was a maiden from Josh Hazlewood Indian openers have to dealwith the threat of Pat Cummins who troubled them in Ranchi 0900 hrs IST: India vs Australia 4th Test Day 2 Pitch report As Steve Smith showed on day one the pitch is agood one to bat? 1429 hrs IST:? too — taking a second athlete to the Olympic finals, was heard by Justices Naresh Patil and M S Sonak. both had alarming readings for rotavirus, a major black eye on Rio’s Olympic project that has set off alarm bells among sailors,families and fishing crews ?WICKET!First ball off the final over and Naman Ojha has skied it Pollard takes it easily at the straight boundary SRH losing momentum here 2144 hrs IST: What an over this is turning out to be for Malinga No boundaries scored so far Rashid Khan and Naman Ojha arein the middle 2141 hrs IST: WICKET Malinga now The slower ball hasdone the trick Vijay Shankar tries to play it on the leg-side but it is too slow and he has closed the bat’s face too early Leading edge caught at point 2137 hrs IST:WICKET Bumrah produces a perfect yorker tocastle Ben Cutting Nothing the batsman could have done about it? “I usually talk non-stop. Kavita Raut will never forget the effort she put in while benefitting from the two training stints abroad.