Savita Punia and PR Sreejesh have been voted as the FIH Goalkeeper of the Year in the women’s and men’s categories respectively.
It has been a year of many successes for the Indian women’s hockey team and Savita has been in brilliant form and often amazed her opponents with her ability to pull saves out of impossible situations. It is therefore no surprise that she received almost twice as many votes from her peers around the world as any other nominee in the Best Goalkeeper category at the FIH Hockey Stars Awards.
The big news came on the auspicious day 🙏
Happy Dussehra ( Vijayadashami) to all 🙏
— sreejesh p r (@16Sreejesh) October 5, 2022
The Hockey India technical officials, Chief Coach Janneke Schopman, and her teammates planned a surprise for Savita at the National Games as a result of her winning the FIH Goalkeeper of the Year Award (Women) 2021-22.😍 pic.twitter.com/blS8m93KA9
— Hockey India (@TheHockeyIndia) October 6, 2022
Savita inspired her team as India ended a 16-year podium drought at the Commonwealth Games 2022. Savita produced a stellar performance in the bronze medal match against New Zealand, which included several game-winning saves in the shootout.
Sreejesh is quite valuable to the team, played in all 16 games in the Pro League and also played in all six games at the 2022 Birmingham CWG, where India bagged the silver medal.
In voting, Sreejesh got a total of 39.9 points, followed by Belgium’s Loic van Doren (26.3 points) and Pirmin Blaak from the Netherlands bagged 23.2 points.
The FIH said in a statement
“The longevity of PR Sreejesh’s career continues to defy logic as the 34-year-old Indian shot-stopper continues to raise his game as the years roll on,”
Savita is now only the third athlete to win the Goalkeeper of the Year (Women) in consecutive years since the award’s inception in 2014, finishing on top with 37.6 points.
Argentina’s Belén Succi scored the second most points with 26.4, followed by Hockeyroos stalwart Jocelyn Bartam who finished with 16 points.
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