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Women's hockey team hopes alive

December 07, 2006 02:20 IST

India resurrected their campaign at the Asian Games women's hockey tournament with a fluent 4-2 victory over Malaysia in a round-robin league match at the Al Rayyan stadium in Doha on Wednesday night.

The Indian eves, who had surprisingly lost to China in their last match, gave a better display to get past the nippy Malaysians in a floodlit encounter.

Asunta Lakra (3rd), Binita Toppo (25th), Saba Anjum (29th) and Mamta Kharab (68) scored for India, who had opened up a 3-1 lead at the half-time.

For Malaysia, Kanaggi Arumugam (9th) and Nadia Abdul Rahman (54th) found the target.

Having learnt their lessons from the last match, the Indians turned on the heat from the word go and shot into the lead as early as the third minute of the contest when Lakra brilliantly converted a penalty-corner, giving no chance at all Malaysian custodian Ernawati Mahmud.

But the euphoria was short-lived as the Malaysians found the equaliser six minutes later through a penalty-corner and initiated a flurry a moves from both the flanks to put the pressure on the Indians.

But two goals within a span of five minutes gave the Indians the upper hand again as captain Jyoti Sunita Kullu, Mamta Kharb and Anjum Sasa combined well to pierce through the Malaysian defence time and again.

With a 3-1 lead at the half time, the Indians attacked with renewed vigour in the second session but their rivals managed to reduce the margin with another penalty-corner conversion through Nadia.

But the Indians had the last laugh as they pumped in one more goal just two minutes before the hooter to bring cheer to the bench.

The Indians are now placed fourth on the table with six points from three matches. China lead the table with 9 points followed by Korea, who have seven points along with Japan.

India will play their next round-robin league match against Hong Kong on December 8.

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