New Delhi [India], May 21 (ANI): The third match of India's Tour of Australia today witnessed the Indian Women's Hockey Team defender Nikki Pradhan achieve a special milestone of completing 150 International Caps.
Pradhan made her International debut during the South Africa Tour held in 2016 and since then Nikki has represented the women's team with aplomb at every important tournament. The Jharkhand-born player also became the first female hockey player from her state to represent India at the Olympics when she took part in the Rio Olympics 2016. She was also part of the Tokyo Olympics 2020.
The 29-year-old has proven her mettle in the team time and again and has been part of some notable victories including the Gold Medal at the Women's Asia Cup in 2017, and Silver at the 2018 Women's Asian Champions Trophy. Nikki also donned the Indian colours during the Commonwealth Games 2018 and the Vitality Hockey Women's World Cup London 2018. She was also part of the Indian team which won a historic Silver Medal at the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta-Palembang and she was also part of the team's victory in FIH Women's Series Finals Hiroshima 2019.
Nikki also played a vital role in India's campaign against the United States in the FIH Olympic Qualifiers where India earned their ticket to Tokyo and in the inaugural FIH Women's Nations Cup in Spain in 2022, where India won the Gold Medal.
"I am extremely happy and proud to complete 150 international caps for India. It is no less than a dream for me to represent my country at the grandest of stages. It was an absolute honour for me to play at the Rio Olympics and Tokyo Olympics. I have had a good run with the national side and the journey so far has been mesmerising. It's a crucial year for us with many major events lined up, hence, I am aiming to continue giving my best on the field and help my team attain greater heights and win laurels in the near future," said an ecstatic Nikki Pradhan.
Congratulating the defender on completing 150 International Caps, Hockey India President Padma Shri Dilip Tirkey said, "Nikki has definitely come a long way since making her India debut in 2015 and it's because of her sheer hard work. She has matured as a player in the last few years and has been instrumental in the team's success.""By becoming the first woman hockey player from Jharkhand to take part in the Olympics, she not only made history but also became an inspiration for young players from her state. On behalf of Hockey India, I wish her the very best as well as congratulate her on achieving this incredible feat." (ANI)