Indian women rule Asia with stunning salvo on China

In what was a remarkable conquest, India edged China 5-4 in the Asia Cup women’s hockey title for the first time since 2004 and locked themselves into the 2018 World Cup

Photo credit: Hockey India / Facebook

For the first time since 2009, India managed to make it into the Asia Cup women’s hockey final and this time, made the best of the opportunity to edge the Chinese side in a shootout to win 5-4 and secure qualification for next year’s hockey World Cup.

India’s momentum was building up ever since defeating defending champions Japan 4-2 in the semi-final and China 4-1 before that, in the group stages.

Things started out rather tense for the Indian side however, with advantage going to China as India conceded a penalty corner in the second minute of the game after a stick check in the circle.

After that however, Deep Grace cleared the ball, supported by some steady padding from goalkeeper Savita. Additionally, Indian forwards Navneet Kaur and Vandana launched an attack that was unfortunately foiled by an attentive Wang Na for the Chinese side, who then went on to win their second PC but a flick by Meiyu Liang was deftly padded by Savita.

After ending the first quarter in a stalemate, India kept the pressure on China, with Navjot Kaur securing India’s solitary goal in the 25th minute. India began the third quarter with some positivity and persisted through it admirably but a second goal played hard-to-get.

The match was ultimately decided by shootouts where India scored every goal while China missed one. The shootout was highlighted by a marvellous save by goalkeeper Savita, who deservingly bagged the Goalkeeper of the Tournament award.

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