MUMBAI: India are not only keen, but possess the ammunition too to retain the men's kabaddi gold at next month's Asian Games, feels star player Monu Goyat.
India goes into the continental quadrennial show-piece as favourites and will be looking to clinch their eighth gold medal in the Games to be hosted by Indonesia from August 18 to September 2.
"Yes, 100 per cent. We want to continue the tradition and our aim is to bag the gold medal. We cannot think anything other than that," Goyat told PTI during an interaction.
Goyat said the Indian team has the benefit of having many raiders and their defence is also up to the mark even in the face of some strong opposition from the likes of Korea, Iran, Pakistan and Bangladesh.
"All the teams are good and will give their best. But the Korean and the Iran teams are good. Even the Pakistan and Bangladesh teams are good, these 3-4 teams can pose a competition," said Goyat, who will making his Games debut.
Incidentally, Goyat had the distinction of attracting the highest bid of Rs 1.51 crore during the last Pro Kabaddi League (PKL) auction.
He said the Indian team's victory in the Kabaddi Masters in Dubai, where they defeated Iran in the final, is a morale booster ahead of the Games.
"The preparations are good. As we won the Kabaddi Masters tournament in Dubai, it is motivating (ahead of the Games). We will work on certain things in the (preparatory) camp, which is expected to begin anytime now," he said.
Goyat also observed that the Iranians are playing like the Indians.
"Iranian players stay and practise with Indian players and their preparation is just like our players and hence are giving a competition," he explained.
He also praised "Raid For Gold", an initiative by Mashal Sports Pvt Ltd, launched to support the national team.
"I was happy when I heard about the campaign and wish people support it and also support the team," he pleaded.