Indians came out guns blazing with fast counter attacks in second half after trailing 0-3 at the stroke of half time, but could not manage to cross the line when they lost to Africa women’s team 2-3 in the crucial Four Nations match in Buenos Aires. Sulette Damons, Liesel Dorothy and Kathleen Taylor scored for South Africa while while Devi Thokchom scored a brace for India.
Looking ahead to the all-important Olympic Qualifier in Delhi in February, the match was a opportunity for both teams to judge their strengths and weaknesses against each. The 12th ranked South Africa and India (13th) have now played four times in the last two years with India winning twice and SA the last two.
India missed some early chances, Captain Ansuta missed, soon after that Rani Rampal shot wide in a set piece in 6th minute but South Africa struck in their first attempt in 9th minute through Damons.Then both the sides missed some couple of chances, but it was South Africa who found the target again thorough Dorothy’s deflection on captain Marsh Marescia’s pass in 16th minute. Then Taylor sent a cracker in to make it 3-0 in favor of South Africa.
10 minutes after the lemon break, India’s Devi Thokchom pulled one back through a corner and she got her second with seven minutes left to make it 3-2. It was an even second half but India made their chances count.
In Saturday’s late game, Argentina’s world champion Las Leonas (the Lionesses) came back from a 2-0 half-time deficit to draw 2-2 with a motivated Ireland.
Day 1: South Africa 2 Ireland 0; Argentina 3 India 2
Day 2: Ireland 1 India 0; Argentina 4 South Africa 1
Day 3: South Africa 3 India 2; Argentina 2 Ireland 2
Third/fourth: Ireland vs India (11:30PM IST 11 Dec, 2011)
First/second: Argentina vs Investec South Africa (2:00AM IST 12 Dec, 2011)