Sjoerd Marijne (Credit: Reuters/ANI) Photograph:( Reuters )
Ahead of the match, the Indian coach Sjoerd Marijne has said that "we will give everything again"
Millions of exuberant fans are praying for India's success in women's hockey event at Tokyo Olympics 2020 after the Rani Rampal-led team registered a historic place in the semi-finals. After defeating three-time Olympics gold medallists Australia in the quarter-finals, the women's team is now being dubbed as medal hopefuls.
In the semi-final, India will take on Argentina to book a place in the gold medal match. Ahead of the match, the Indian coach Sjoerd Marijne thanked for "all the support" and said that "we will give everything again" while responding to a tweet of Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan.
The Twitter exchange between the two went viral, in which Sjoerd called himself "The Real Coach". He referred to a popular Bollywood movie 'Chak De! India', which is based on women's hockey in which King Khan played the role of coach, Kabir Khan.
See the Twitter exchange between coach Sjoerd Marijne and SRK here:
Thank you for all the support and love. We will give everything again.— Sjoerd Marijne (@SjoerdMarijne) August 2, 2021
From: The Real Coach. 😉 https://t.co/TpKTMuFLxt
After the quarter-final match, Marijne said, "How my heart was? It's still working. I was like but that's in every match in the last three games. The defending was not good enough especially defending in the circle. So we focussed on that. It also helps keep your mind away from winning and losing."
"It's all about the mindset. I told the girls that we have nothing to lose, so play free, and that's what we did today. It's like a dream come true. I think this is the Chak De India in reality," he added.
In the quarter-final, Gurjit Kaur scored India's winning goal from a first-half penalty corner, beating Australia goalie Rachael Lynch who had kept a clean sheet in the previous four matches.
As quoted by Reuters, Marijne said he has tried to instil big dreams in his players. "In India you must think big. That's what I said to my girls: 'If you aim for the clouds, you will fall on the highest mountain. If you aim for the highest mountain, you will fall on the ground'," he said. "We went for the clouds."
After rather a disappointing start in the Olympics campaign, as they began with losses against the Netherlands (5-1), Germany (2-0) and Great Britain 4-1), India then picked up the momentum and defeat Ireland (1-0) and South Africa (4-3) in back-to-back clashes in Pool A.
After that Great Britain crushed Ireland 2-0 in their last Group A clash that helped India to enter the quarter-finals.