Gold Coast [Australia]: The Indian women’s hockey team registered their first victory at the Commonwealth Games as they defeated Malaysia 4-1 in their second match of Pool A.
Two goals from Gurjit Kaur (6′, 39′) and a goal each from skipper Rani (56′) and Lalremsiami (59′) saw the Indians secure a morale-boosting victory against their Asian counterparts. The only goal for Malaysia was scored by Nuraini Rashid in the 38th minute.
India started the first quarter with electric pace and made chances inside the first minute itself. They won three penalty corners in the first quarter, the last of which was converted successfully by drag-flicker Commonwealth Games to give India a crucial lead in the 6th minute.
Towards the latter stages of the first period, it was Malaysia who looked to hit back with a goal by creating chances, but India’s defence made sure that the team maintained their lead at the end of the quarter.
In the second quarter, both the teams looked aggressive in their intent. While India wanted to stamp their authority on the match by getting the second goal, Malaysia, on the other hand, wanted to find an equaliser. However, neither of the teams could achieve their goal as it was a fairly balanced second quarter.
After the half-time break, a struggling Malaysia converted a penalty corner through Nuraini Rashid to equalise the scores in the 38th minute.
India regained their lead when Gurjit Kaur stroked a powerful flick above the Malaysian goalkeeper to convert her second penalty corner of the match.
In the 56th minute of the crucial last quarter, Neha Goyal made a darting run from the right flank, avoiding challenges from multiple defenders and passing the ball past the Malaysian Goalkeeper towards Rani, who then scored to extend India’s lead to 3-1.
In the 59th minute, Lalremsiami carried the ball upfield into the striking circle and passed it to Vandana Katariya, whose return pass was calmly finished off by Lalremsiami to secure a convincing victory. (ANI)