India fought valiantly against higher-ranked China before going down by a solitary goal in their second Pool A match of the eighth Women's Asia Cup hockey tournament in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday.
The Indian eves, ranked 12th in the world, fought tooth and nail against the seventh ranked Chinese girls and matched their opponents for most part of the match.
India didn’t give an inch to the nimble-footed Chinese, at least in the opening half, as both the teams failed to break the deadlock in the first period.
Both teams continued in the same vein at the change of ends before Wang Meng Yu finally broke the deadlock for China by converting a penalty corner in the 50th minute.
Trailing 0-1, the Indians pressed hard for the equalizer and created quite a few scoring chances but the Chinsese defence stood tall to deny their opponents.
India's forwardline led by Rani Ramphal, who scored seven goals against Hong Kong China on Saturday, were found wanting in front of the disciplined Chinese defence against China.
The Indians created chances but most of their efforts fizzled out after entering opposition circle.
With two wins from as many games, China are at the top of Pool A. India and hosts Malaysia are closely behind with one win and a loss each.
India will play Malaysia in their last pool match on Tuesday.
A draw against Malaysia would ensure India's place in the semi-finals on better goal difference, while the hosts have no choice but to win against the Indians.