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Indian women trounce Indonesia in Asian Games hockey

Indian women trounce Indonesia  in Asian Games  hockey

By Harpal Singh Bedi

Jakarta, Aug 19 (UNI) Striker Gurjit Kaur led the charge as title contender India overran lowly Indonesia 8-0 in their opening match of the Women”s hockey competition at the 18th Asian Games here on Sunday.

For the winners who led 6-0 at half time, the goal scorers were Gurjit Kaur (18,22,57)) Vandana Katariya (13,28) Navnet Kaur (25,49) and Udita (7).

Though the victory margin looks impressive on paper but Indians inability to convert several chances and make use of most of the over one dozen penalty corners was certainly a cause of concern.

Indians started on a whirlwind fashion taking 2-0 lead in the first quarter through Udita and Vandana Katariya respectively.

They pumped in four more in the second quarter with Gurjeet Kaur converting two penalty corners, Navneet and Vandana chipping in one each to make it 6-0 halfway through the match.

But it was in the next 30-minutes which exposed Indians vulnerability to cut through the crowded defence to score.

The Indonesian girls who looked novices in the first two quarters, not knowing what was happening on the field, suddenly regrouped themselves and just crowded their defence thus blocking the free run Indians had enjoyed in the first half.

Suddenly the all pervading Indian forward line lost its cohesion.They just could not get past the beefed up Indonesian defence. They do manage to get several penalty corners but could not make use of them.

The Indians were expected to dominate and which they did but their failure to score in the third quarter and scoring two in the last quarter is not a type of showing which coach Sjoerd Marijne will appreciate.

The Indians are going to face much tougher opponents and they need to work out on the grey areas otherwise it is going to be difficult for them as the tournament progresses.

Marijne opined that victory margin is impressive and his girls played well but “I know that penalty corner conversion is one area which needs improvement and I hope the players will also realize that.”

The second half showing is a wake up call for the Rani Rampal’s side because they can not afford to miss so many penalty corner and chances in next matches if they want to finish at the top of the podium and book ticket for 2020 Tokyo Olympics.


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