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The captain of the Indian women’s hockey team, Savita Punia, opened up on her disappointment after the team failed to qualify for Paris. Notably, the Indian team who lost the bronze medal clash in the Tokyo Olympics failed to qualify for the 2024 Paris Olympics after they lost to Japan in the qualifiers. Punia revealed how she coped with the big loss of not playing in the upcoming tournament. The 33-year-old said that she contemplated her retirement after losing the qualifiers. 

Punia spoke to Times Now and said, “I remember going back home after the Olympic qualifiers and I felt like I didn't want to play anymore and I should just quit. It was a very low feeling and it didn't last for a few days, it lasted for weeks. We played the Pro League in February but the feeling was still the same. After I went back home, both my parents and my in-laws, were very supportive and they assured me that whatever decision I make on my career, they will be beside me.”

Punia revealed what made her change the decision and said, “I think the passion for the sport overpowered my retirement decision and then I decided to play the national championships. The hurt of not qualifying for Paris even after a fourth-place finish at Tokyo will always stay but the win at the championships has helped me. All I want to do now is enjoy what I am doing and I want to keep improving and speaking for the team, we will make a stronger comeback.”

The hockey player revealed her plans to play in the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics and said that she is physically and mentally fit. Punia commented, “I am still fit both physically and mentally at 33. I don’t feel my age at times and it inspires me to keep moving. I believe that if I can do bigger things at this age, I can inspire others as well, even if it is in some other field or sport. There is a common notion that women should give up their careers after a certain age, but I am blessed that my in-laws have been extremely supportive.” 

She added, "I can’t promise that I will play for the next four years but I would like to continue. There is the next leg of Pro League and then the much-awaited Hockey India League. I want to play one big tournament before I retire.”