Hockey India congratulates Kothajit Singh for participating in the 200th match

NEW DELHI: Indian hockey congratulated defender Kothajit Singh Khadangbam for participating in his 200th international match on Sunday.

It reached this milestone when India played against New Zealand in its second Olympic test match at the Oi Hockey Tokyo Stadium

The Manipur-born defender put on the blue shirt for the senior men's team, the first time in 2012. Since then, Kothajit has regularly participated in international tournaments for the Indian team.

With 200 games under his belt, the defender comes with a lot of experience and shows a calm character when under pressure.

Kothajit, who turned 27 on Saturday, was part of the winning team of the Indian silver medal at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and also won the gold medal at the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon. It was during this match that Kothajit scored a brilliant draw in the final against Pakistan that led the match to a penalty.

The unconditional Indian was also part of the contingent that participated in the Rio Olympics in 2016.

After not being part of the team that participated in the 18th Asian Games in Jakarta-Palembang, he was entrusted with the task at the Asian Champions Trophy 2018 in Muscat, Oman.

Having justified his selection, Kothajit also found a place in the Indian team for the prestigious Odisha Hockey Men's World Cup 2018 in Bhubaneswar where the team went down fighting in the quarter-final to the Netherlands.

I am extremely grateful to have had the opportunity to represent the nation for more than seven years. It has been a long journey and all the years I played for the country have been very memorable. Bringing the colors of my country for 200 today's time means a lot to me, said Kothajit.

New friends have been made in the locker room over the years, and I am grateful to the support staff and my teammates for supporting me during all these years. I hope to continue representing my country when necessary. It is an important phase for the team, as we seek to qualify for the 2020 Olympics, he added.

Congratulating Kothajit on completing 200 International Caps, Mohd Mushtaque Ahmad, President, Indian hockey , said: "On behalf of Indian hockey , I would like to congratulate Kothajit on completing 200 international caps for the country. He is an inspiration to many young players across India, especially from the Northeast. He is one of the finest defenders in the country and to play for India for all these years is a great achievement."