TERASSA (Spain): Navneet Kaur scored a brace as the Indian women’s hockey team beat Japan 3-1 to finish a disappointing ninth in the FIH World Cup here Wednesday.
Navneet (30th, 45th mins) scored two field goals, while Deep Grace Ekka (38th) sounded the board once on a set piece in the classification match.
Japan’s only goal came from Yu Asai’s sticks in the 20th minute.
It was a close fight in the first five minutes of the first quarter, but both teams failed to score.
Soon India had a huge chance to take the lead, but Vandana KatariaThe close effort was stopped by Japanese goalkeeper Eika Nakamura.

The two teams fought for the remainder of the first quarter, but to no avail.
India got off to a good start in the second quarter and got a few chances in the space of two minutes, but the goals eluded the side led by Savita.
Japan took the lead in the 20th minute through Yu Asai converting a penalty corner.
India quickly earned their first penalty corner but squandered the chance.
They raised their game in the final minutes of the second quarter with relentless attacks, but Japan defended vigorously.
India equalized at the stroke of half time when Navneet found the board after an effort on the pitch.
India started on their feet after the switch and were awarded their sixth penalty corner of the match but, as has been the case throughout the tournament, once again squandered their chance.
Lalremsiami threatened from the left flank but the Japanese defenders were up to the task.
However, India won another penalty corner and this time Ekka scored to put his side ahead eight minutes into the second half.
The Indians mounted attack after attack on the Japanese goal and on one occasion Vandana came on temptingly close but her effort was saved by Japanese keeper Nakamura.
The game was mostly surrounded inside the Japanese half after the change of sides as India attacked in relentless numbers.
India came close to taking a two-goal lead in the third quarter, but Sharmila DeviThe goal of was disallowed because the ball touched his body.
The third quarter belonged entirely to India as they increased the limits of their game to confuse the Japanese defense which resulted in Navneet’s second goal towards the end.
India continued in the same vein in the fourth and final quarter with Vandana again denied by the Japanese keeper.
Japan tried hard in the final minutes but failed to break through India’s resolute defense.



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