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Indian eves go down fighting to Korea
December 11, 2006 21:33 IST
A fighting Indian women's hockey team on Monday suffered a narrow 3-2 defeat in their last round robin league encounter against South Korea ahead of the bronze medal clash between the two countries at the Asian Games in Doha.
The Indians, who were placed in the third position on the table, slipped to the fourth spot after completing their league engagements and will now again lock horns again with third-placed Korea in a bronze medal play-off on Wednesday.
Japan finished at the top of the points table with 16 points from six matches while China finished second with 15 points. The two teams will now clash for the gold medal.
India completed their league engaments with nine points, winning three matches and losing as many.
The Koreans rode a brilliant hattrick by Park Young Soon (20th, 61st, 66th) to script the morale boosting win in a rehersal of the bronze medal clash. They dominated the proceedings against the Indians who lacked the finishing touches.
The Indian eves, however, did not surrender meekly scoring twice through Surinder Kaur (31st) and Saba Anjum (52nd).
The Koreans fired the first salvo in the 20th minute when Park converted a penalty corner but the Indians neutralised the lead 11 minutes later when Surinder slammed in a lovely field goal.
With both teams tied 1-1, the second half saw a fierce battle for control of the game before the Indians took the lead in the 52nd minute with Saba Anjum scoring a field goal.
But the euphoria was shortlived as Park again converted a peanlty corner nine minutes later and sealed India's fate by scoring through a penalty stroke four minutes before the hooter.
"The game today was just a trial as we gave some young players and our reserve goal-keeper a run. They played very well and some of them played as though they are giving their life", Indian coach M K Kaushik said.
"I think it was a creditable performance against Korea considering that we did not play our full side", he said.
Doha Asian Games 2006: The Complete Coverage