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China score in first-half, enter semis

October 25, 2003 17:18 IST

Three first-half goals helped China overcome a spirited Nigeria 3-1 for a place in the semi-finals in women's hockey tournament at the Afro-Asian Games in Hyderabad on Saturday.

The World Cup winners, who appeared a bit jittery in their opening tie against Ghana on Friday, came up with a much-improved performance at the Gawchibowli stadium.

Hai Ying He put the Chinese ahead in the third minute and Yali Yu increased the margin in the 22nd minute. The Africans struck back through Matyan Nkkireka in the 28th minute.

For a brief period, Nigeria dominated the proceedings but failed to find the equaliser as the Chinese defenders thwarted their every move.

China scored their third goal seconds before half-time when Chen Lizhu sounded the board.

In the second session, the Chinese dominated but failed to increase their tally.

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