India conceded an extra time goal to lose 1-2 to China and sign off fourth in the Four Nation Hockey tournament in Perth on Sunday.
India had beaten their northern neighbours 3-1 in their last league match on Saturday but on Sunday they played the catching up game before eventually finishing with the wooden spoon.
India had lost their first round-robin league match 1-4 to Korea but came back strongly to hold the Australians 2-2 and thumped China 3-1 in their next two matches only to be pipped to the post for a spot in the final by Korea.
A win on Sunday would have boosted the morale of Joaquim Carvalho's boys who will now play against the same three teams in Darwin from April 30 to May 4 in the second leg of the Four Nation tournament.
The two teams were evenly matched in the first half, with both sides wasting a couple of chances. China were, however, the better side for most part of the second session.
China broke the deadlock in the 44th minute with Chi Meng sounding the board and India equalised in the 61st minute through Shivendra Singh to take the match to extra time.
Chi Liu scored the winner for China early in the second half extra time (79th) to record their first win of the tournament.
In the final match later in the day, Australia beat Korea 4-3 to win the tournament.