“If India were to win the tournament the impact would be huge but with so many great hockey nations competing, it is really difficult to predict who will lift the trophy,” said Negre in a statement yesterday.
“I am really looking forward to visiting India again. I love everything about coming to India. I am always made to feel extremely welcome here. Hockey events in India are always very special and the atmosphere when the home team are in action is something that has to be seen to be believed. It is a real privilege to experience it.”
Negre feels India holds a very special place in world hockey and there is abundant talent in the country to become a world class side.
“India has always been strong at the junior level. However, it is not always easy to make the transition from junior to senior hockey. And this applies to every nation. But the India men’s team has a fine crop of young talent coming through,” said the FIH president.