India‘s Women Hockey team lost to the hosts Japan 1-2 in their last league match at the 3rd Asian Champions Trophy being played at Kakamigahara, while Men’s team went down fighting to neighboring arch-rival Pakistan (4-5) to bow out of the title contention.
In the other matches of the day, Malaysian Women’s team stunned higher ranked China by 1-0, while men’s competition Malaysia defeated China 5-4 and Japan beat Oman 4-0.
Indian Women’s team took 1-0 lead in the 33rd minute when Chanchan Devi scored off a penalty corner. Japan got three penalty corners in the first half but Indian defense and goalkeeper denied any scoring chance to their opponents and went to lemon break with a slender lead of 1-0.
Japan found the equalizer in 59th minute with the field goal scored by Arai Mazuki and scored the winning goal in 68th minute, when Otsuka Shiho scored for Japan on a penalty corner.
India women’s team will now take on the hosts Japan in the final to be played on 9 November 2013. (Detailed schedule here)
In the men’s competition, gallant India was edged by Pakistan. Young Indian side put up a strong fight against experienced Pakistan Hockey team, but lost to the neighbors by 4-5.
The green shirts took early lead in 2nd minute via a field goal scored by youngster Abdul Haseem Khan. Indians came close to equalize in 13th minute but Pak Goalkeeper Imran Butt stood in their way.
Young Indian donning new yellow jerseys, leveled the score when Gurjinder Singh found the target on penalty corner in 24th minute and took lead through another penalty corner in goal in 30th minute via Amit Rohidas.
Indian lead lasted for few minutes, when Pakistan’s captain Muhammad Imran converted a penalty corner in 35th minute to level the scores just before the half time break.
Muhammad Rizwan (Sr) scored a field goal for the defending Champions Pakistan in the opening minute of 2nd half to earn lead (3-2) for his side. Just four minute later, India’s Captain Manpreet Singh scored a field goal to level the scores once again.
Rizwan Sr struck his second goal in 44th minute to take his side ahead yet again. The Indian side leveled the scores once again in 49th minute when Malak Singh scored a field goal.
The defending champions scored their 5th and last goal in 53rd minute via Muhammad Rizwan Junior. Indian side tried hard but could not find that elusive equalizer in the last 17 minutes of the game, during which they failed to convert crucial penalty corner in 67th minute.
Indian men’s team will now play Malaysia at 11:00 AM (IST) on 8th November in their last league match.