Midfielder for the Indian women’s hockey team Namita Topo, who won the prestigious Ekalabya Puraskar 2020 award in Odisha, feels the awards follow you as you give your best on the field. The 25-year-old midfielder, who played a key role in India’s decisive win in the FIH Hockey Olympic Qualifiers 2019 against the USA, was announced to be awarded the grand prize last week by IMPaCT, the charitable arm of Indian Metals & Ferro Alloys (IMFA). Toppo will receive a check of Rs 5,000 as well as a quote at the award ceremony, the date of which will be announced in due course.
“It is a great honor for me to win the Ekalabya Puraskar 2020. As a member of the Indian women hockey team, it gives me great joy, and makes me proud of the whole team, because because of them I have been able to perform well in the last year, especially after his comeback of major injury,” Topo said in a statement to Hockey India.
“I would like to thank the members of the Iqbal Committee for giving them this award, and I hope to continue the pride of my country and my country,” she added.
Having played a vital role in India’s victory over USA in the 2019 Olympic hockey qualifiers held at Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar, Topo has also been recognized by fans of the sport for her dominance in midfield, crediting the hard work of being recognized. Follow.
“I believe that anything that happens in a team sport, happens because of the unity and spirit of the team. If I am recognized for my performance, it is because everyone – from the head coach and support staff to my teammates, Hockey India and SAI – did their best in all areas to achieve our goals. I also see that the awards follow you when you give your best in the field, and that we have seen a lot this year, especially with my teammates and the whole team has had so many awards recently.”
With over 160 caps to her name, Namita has no shortage of experience and wants to make sure she can always help her team in all situations.
“I have been fortunate enough to have played the game for a long time and with some great players. It is a period in the women’s game where we are all very confident, and have really strong faith. With the Indian hockey going on. Support, we were able to qualify for the Olympics after a 36-year gap in 2016. Then we performed exceptionally well and made history to qualify for back-to-back Olympics, so we want to continue on this path, and my goal is I will always be to help my team in all situations, whether it is on the field or off the field,” Tobo added.
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