15 June 2019
Hiroshima: The India’s Women’s Hockey team began their campaign at the FIH Women's Series Finals Hiroshima 2019 with an impressive 4-1 win over Uruguay here today.
Ranked No.9 in the World, the Indian team opened their account as Captain Rani gave them a lead in the 10th minute with a skilful strike. At the end of first quarter, India led the match despite Uruguay dominating the possession in the quarter and creating more opportunities. The South American side had four circle penetrations and two penalty corners, all of them kept at bay by an alert Indian defence. From the two circle penetrations India made, Skipper Rani converted one to give her side the lead.
India dominated possession in the second quarter. While Uruguay team was kept quiet, India kept making their moves in the Uruguayan half. In the 21st minute, India got their first penalty corner as Gurjant Kaur didn’t make any mistake converting the only PC her team got in the quarter into a goal, doubling India’s lead in the match.
Third quarter had a scrappy start as both sides kept losing the ball initially. But soon, India got its first PC of the quarter. Uruguayan goalkeeper Constance Schmidt-Liermann was upto the challenge keeping out India’s shot. Within the same minute, Uruguay got two penalty corners but none changing anything as India kept their defence tight to keep the scoreline at 2-0. India’s constant pressure reaped dividends in the 40th minute. A nice pass from Vandana Katariya was ably converted by Jyoti to make it 3-0 for India, a scoreline that remained intact at the end of the 3rd quarter.
The fourth quarter didn’t look to have any different script. In the 50th minute, Neha Goyal had a chance to make it 4-0 for India when she fumbled a chance, inches from the goal post at the right corner. Against the run of the play, a minute later, Uruguay finally found the back of the net with some individual brilliance from Maria Teresa Viana Ache. She ran through the Indian defence to score her team’s first in the 51st minute. India wasn’t ready to sit on the lead as five minutes later India took a 4-1 lead. Captain Rani made a smart pass in the D to Lalremsiami who was unmarked as she nudged the ball into Uruguayan goal. Eventually, the match ended in India’s favour 4-1.
India next play Poland on 16 June at 14:30 Hrs in their second match of the event. The match will be streamed live on fih.live.