Bhopal, March 13 (IANS) The Indian women’s hockey squad, which is gearing up for the all-important Hockey Women’s World League (HWL) Round 2 in Canada were put through the grind on Monday morning under the watchful eyes of chief coach Sjoerd Marijne. But no sooner than the gruelling session came to an end, the girls indulged in a splash of colours to celebrate the festivities of Holi.

Even the newly-appointed coaches, including chief coach Marijne, analytical coach Eric Wonink, both from Netherlands, and Hockey India’s High Performance Director David John were not spared a soaking in colours.

“They were absolutely thrilled to play Holi with us. They totally enjoyed and so did we. I have never played Holi like this in my entire life,” stated an excited Rani Rampal.

Customary to any celebrations these days, the girls pulled out their smartphones for a round of selfies with the team and this occasion sure counted as one of the many highlights as these girls have trained together for several years and have found a home away from home in the national camp.

“We have celebrated many festivals together as a family but this one is very special,” exclaimed senior most member of the squad Deepika.

The festivities went on right till 3 pm before the girls called it a day and set out to gear up for the evening session.

“We had only heard about the festival of colours but had never played. It was overwhelming to be part of the celebrations and I also see this as a great team bonding opportunity,” expressed a candid Marijne.

“Now getting these colours off our faces and clothes will be a task.”

    The IANS was founded by Indian American publisher Gopal Raju as the India Abroad News Service. It was later renamed the Indo-Asian News Service.

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