India beat South Korea to lift maiden Women’s Junior Hockey Asia Cup

India put up a collective show to stun four-time champions South Korea 2-1 and clinch their maiden Women’s Junior Hockey Asia Cup in Japan’s Kakamigahara on Sunday.

This triumph marks India’s first-ever win in the tournament. Annu (21′) and Neelam (40′) scored the goals for India, while Seoyeon Park (24′) netted for Korea. 

India and Korea engaged in an intense match with an attacking approach. India missed an early penalty corner opportunity while Korea relied on counter-attacks. The first quarter ended goalless. India took the lead through Annu’s penalty stroke, but Korea quickly equalized with a field goal by Seoyeon Park. 

The second half saw India switching to counter-attacks and Neelam converted a penalty corner to give them a 2-1 lead. In the final quarter, India focused on defending and held off Korea’s desperate attempts. India emerged victorious with a 2-1 score, showcasing their tactical strength and securing the title.

Indian captain Preeti who was named Player-of-the-Match said they had their strategy in place following a 1-1 draw against the Koreans in the round-robin stage.

“We were acutely aware of the specific areas we needed to excel in order to overcome the Koreans,” Preeti said.

“The final match brought about a considerable amount of nerves. However, we knew that as a team we have to play our best game to achieve something special and that’s exactly what we did. We are elated to make our nation proud,” she added.

India Women’s Junior Hockey team has already secured a place in the upcoming FIH Women’s Junior World Cup 2023 in Chile.

PM Modi congratulates the Women’s Junior Hockey

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday congratulated the women’s junior hockey team saying they showed immense perseverance and made the nation proud.

“Congratulations to our young champions on winning the 2023 Women’s Hockey Junior Asia Cup! The team has shown immense perseverance, talent and teamwork,” Modi said in a tweet.

“They have made our nation very proud. Best wishes to them for their endeavours ahead,” he said

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Updated: 13 Jun 2023, 08:11 AM IST

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