New Zealand, 06 November 2014: The Junior Women Hockey Team of India put up a tough fight in the ongoing series against New Zealand today and held the hosts 2-2 in their second match of the six-match test series being played at the TET Multisports Centre, Stratford after losing 1st Match by 1-2.
The junior black sticks women had a good start to the game as Kelsey Smith scored the initial goal of the match, giving the hosts a lead of 1-0 in the first half itself. India made desperate attempts to score but, given the strong defense line of the opponents, could not succeed in putting the ball in the net. At the end of the first half the scores stood at 0-1, indicative of a trail for India.
The second half saw Indian women fighting back with all strength, as a result of which a close range goal from the stick of forward Anupa Barla leveled the score for India. The match intensified further after the leveler as both the teams looked for creating more scoring opportunities. Soon, India was awarded a penalty corner and Jaspreet Kaur, leaving no room for mistakes, flawlessly converted the opportunity into a goal, low to the New Zealand’s keeper’s right, taking the score to 2-1. In next to no time, Rachel McCann of New Zealand tied the game with another field goal 12 minutes from the final hooter, thus equalizing the scores.
In the last quarter of the game both the teams managed to create a few new scoring chances but could not materialize the opportunity and at the end of the game the scoreboard showed a score of 2-2, indicating a draw.
After a 2-1 win yesterday in their first game of the six-test series, head coach Jude Menezes said although a win would have been nice, there were lots of positives to take from today’s game.
“Overall, it was a good end result, and a really good fight to come from behind and equalise. We had our chances – approximately 30 circle entries, 12 shots on goals – but we just couldn’t put them away today,” said Menezes.
“We didn’t play as well as we did yesterday and India improved their performance. We rotated some new players into new positions and we didn’t settle in as easily, it gave India a chance to exploit the gaps in the midfield,” he said.
India will be taking on New Zealand again on 08 November 2014 at 0730 HRS (IST) for their third match of the ongoing six-match test series in New Zealand at TET Multisports Centre, Stratford.
Schedule Future Black Sticks vs India Series:
Free entry for all games at TET Multisports Centre, Stratford
3pm (730am IST), Wed 5 November, Black Sticks won 2-1
6pm (1030am IST), Thursday 6 November: 2-2 Draw
3pm (730am IST), Saturday 8 November
3pm (730am IST), Sunday 9 November
3pm (730am IST), Wednesday 12 November
11am (330am IST), Thursday 13 November
Indian Squad for the series:
Goalkeepers: Sonal Miz, Inderpreet Kaur
Defenders: Priya, Pooja Rani, Karishma Yadav, Deep Grace Ekka (Captain), Jaspreet Kaur, Manjit Kaur,
Midfielders: Sonika, Preeti Dubey, Lilima Minz, Navneet Kaur, Namita Toppo,
Forwards: Priyanka, Navpreet Kaur, Navjot Kaur (Vice-Captain), Poonam Barla, Anupa Barla
Future Black Sticks Squad for the series:
Stephanie Dickins, Kayla Bradey, Su Arn Kwek, Alex Conway, Alia Jacques, Tessa Jopp, Rachel McCann, Victoria Methven, Erin Goad, Kelsey Smith, Danielle Sutherland, Maddi McLean, Kate McCaw, Siobhan Nuzum, Felicity Reidy, Deanna Ritchie, Brooke Roberts (GK), Lydia Velzian, Sarah Matthews (GK), Melissa Harris (GK), Cassandra Reid (C)