Tokyo (Japan): The Indian women’s hockey team on Tuesday moved to the final of the Olympic Test Event after playing a goalless draw against China at the Oi Hockey Stadium here.
The Indian side looked in good rhythm during the initial stages of the first quarter and constantly built pressure on the Chinese squad.
They rotated the ball well to secure a penalty corner in the eighth minute but failed to score as Chinese goalkeeper Dongxiao Li deflected a shot.
The Chinese team tried to launch an attack but could not find an opening in the first quarter.
The Indian women started the second quarter with attacking flair and won themselves their second penalty corner in the 17th minute. Gurjit Kaur attempted to find the target but was denied the opportunity by Li.
The second quarter saw both the teams battle it out in midfield, with neither side giving much space to their opponents.
Unlike India, which is the world number 10 side, the Chinese needed a win to reach the top of the points table.
In the third quarter, China came close to taking the lead in the 41st minute through their first penalty corner, but Indian goalkeeper Savita made a great save.
The Chinese were awarded their second penalty corner in the 47th minute, but Savita again came to India’s rescue and denied the world number 11 team a chance to net the ball.
India also had a few chances to take the lead in the following minutes, but could not find the breakthrough as Chinese defended well.
The match became tense for both the teams in the last few minutes with China bagging back-to-back penalty corners with just two minutes remaining on the clock.
However, the Indian defense stood up to the task and managed to block the first attempt, and then Savita saved the other penalty corner to earn her team a much-deserved draw, and a place in the final.
With a tally of five points from three matches, the Indian women’s team topped the points table, and will now face hosts Japan in the final of the tournament tomorrow.(ANI)