Hockey

Indian women's awful form continues

Germany's Christina Schuetze, left, battles for the ball with India's Mukta Barla during a 2010 Women's Hockey World Cup match in Rosario, Argentina, Friday, Sept. 3, 2010. Germany won 4-1. (AP Photo/Eduardo Di Baia)

Germany's Christina Schuetze, left, battles for the ball with India's Mukta Barla during a 2010 Women's Hockey World Cup match in Rosario, Argentina, Friday, Sept. 3, 2010. Germany won 4-1. (AP Photo/Eduardo Di Baia)   | Photo Credit: Eduardo Di Baia

Australia suffers its first defeat; Japan draws with New Zealand

Indian women's disastrous hockey World Cup campaign continued as they lost 1-4 to Germany to complete a hat-trick of defeats in the quadrennial event here.

India's third consecutive defeat in Pool A means the Surinder Kaur-led side is still without points in the tournament and is virtually out of the medal race.

The comprehensive victory, however, took Germany one step closer towards the semifinal spot, having won all its three pool matches so far.

Germany had four different goal-scorers in the match in Eileen Hoffmann (22nd minute), Maike Stoekel (32nd), Natascha Keller (37th) and Lydia Haase (49th).

Some consolation

While for India, the ever-impressive Rani Rampal sounded the board to become the joint top-scorer of the tournament along with Maartje Paumen of the Netherlands with four goals each.

India will next play Japan in its penultimate pool match, while Germany will be up against defending champion the Netherlands.

As was the case in its earlier two matches, the India was slow to get off the blocks which gave Germany the upper hand from the onset. But despite having better exchanges in the initial stages of the match, it took Germany 22 minutes to break the deadlock when Hoffmann converted the only penalty corner out of the four it earned.

Germany's celebrations were short-lived as 15-year-old Rampal scored from open play to level the scores.

Germany, however, restored its lead three minutes from the breather when a diving Stoekel pushed in a cross from the right past Indian custodian Dipika Murthy.

After the change of ends, it was all Germany.

Evergreen striker Keller showing her creativity with the stick. Keller's effort bore fruit early in the second period when she scored from a penalty stroke to give Germany its first goal from the spot.

Haase completed the scoreline for Germany in the 49th minute.

From there on, India pressed hard for a comeback, mounting continuous pressure on the German defence but Reynolds stood firm to deny the team.

“Our problem is that we are losing our way in the second half,” said India coach Sandeep Somesh.

Somesh believes other teams may be working out how to defeat India after the half-time break. “It is a bit of both losing our way and other teams figuring out how to win against us in the second half,” Somesh said.

Meanwhile, in other Pool A matches, Australia suffered its first tournament defeat at the hands of Netherlands 4-1 and Japan drew 2-2 with New Zealand to give them each their first point of the tournament.

Paumen sparkles

Three Maartje Paumen penalty corners for the Netherlands and Minke Smeet's field goal put Australia's hopes of a semifinal berth under a cloud.

Nicole Arrold converted Australia's first penalty corner after Paumen's first goal but Paumen scored again before the break.

Australia needs to beat New Zealand and Germany to be assured of a semifinal place.

In Pool B matches on Friday, held over from Thursday's washout of all matches, South Africa succumbed 4-1 to China's finely honed skills to give China its first tournament win from three matches, South Korea and England drew 1-1 and Argentina routed Spain 4-0 to stay at the top of Pool B.

The results:

Pool A: Germany 4 (Hoffmann 22, Stoeckel 32, Keller 37, Haase 49) bt India 1 (Rampal 24); Australia 1 (Arrold 21) lost to Netherlands 4 (Paumen 10, 34, 40, Smeets 46); Japan 2 (Chiba 47, Nakashima 54) drew with New Zealand 2 (Forgesson 56, Sharland 57).

Pool B: China 4 (Gao 26, 58, 60, Fu 44) bt South Africa 1 (Wilson 4); England 1 (Richardson 37) drew with South Korea 1 (J.E.Kim 1); Spain 0 lost to Argentina 4 (Barrionuevo 13, 47, Gulla 14, Luchetti 40). — Agencies

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Printable version | Apr 1, 2020 4:44:39 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/hockey/Indian-womens-awful-form-continues/article15903058.ece

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