Rani Rampal fondly recalls National Games as career stepping stone
Former Indian women’s hockey captain Rani Rampal reminisces about the National Games as the pivotal platform that propelled her into the national team, expressing her deep attachment and pride for the event.
Former captain of the Indian women’s hockey team, Rani Rampal, holds a sentimental connection with the National Games, citing it as the pivotal catalyst that propelled her into the national spotlight.
Rani, recognized as the youngest women’s hockey player to debut for the Indian senior team, was scouted during the 2007 National Games held in Guwahati, Assam, at a mere age of 14. Her performance during this event fast-tracked her career, leading to more than 250 matches for India and over 120 goals scored during her illustrious journey.
Despite her extensive career, the National Games retain a special place in Rani’s heart. She’s currently leading defending champions Haryana in the 37th edition of the Games in Goa, where she made a memorable start with an 8-0 victory over Tamil Nadu, even contributing to the scoreboard herself.
Rani shared, “The National Games have a special place in my heart. My journey to the national team began at the 2007 National Games. It opened the doors for my national team entry. Representing your state and contributing to their success holds immense significance.”
Reflecting on the importance of senior international players participating in state teams, Rani expressed, “Being a part of the Haryana team, I aim to motivate and guide young, talented players. I believe my presence can significantly contribute to the growth of hockey in our state.”
Rani also lauded Goa’s hosting of the National Games, seeing it as a testament to the expanding sports culture across India and expressing hope for the state to produce future international sports stars.