The Indian women’s hockey team started their Malaysia tour on a high as they got the better of the hosts by 3-0 goals in Kuala Lumpur. Vandana Katariya scored a brace for the hosts while Lalremsiami also managed to find the back of the net to give India a 1-0 lead in the five-match series.
Though it was Malaysia who got a head start with a PC awarded to them in the 3rd minute of the match, it was well-saved by an experienced Savita guarding India's goalpost. India shook off the initial nerves to make potential circle entries that would put pressure on the Malaysian defenders. Young Lalremsiami took a brave shot on goal in the 5th minute but was saved. In the seventh minute, Navneet Kaur attempted a shot on goal but was denied by an alert Malaysian goalkeeper. While India found an opportunity through a PC awarded in the 9th minute, the shot went wide.
With the first quarter ending with a 0-0 stalemate, India made quick amends to an average start as they dented Malaysian defence with a powerful attack that led to a fine goal by experienced striker Vandana Katariya in the 17th minute. The 1-0 lead brought confidence in the Indian set-up to surge ahead in their attack and the forward line went about taking their chances in the striking circle, attempting shots on goal one after the other. Though none converted, the pressure was mounting on Malaysian defenders.
India playing to good structure controlled the proceedings in the third quarter too. They kept the Malaysian attack in check and an under-pressure Malaysian defence gave away PCs after making infringements in the circle. Though three PCs awarded to India back-to-back went in vain, India converted their second goal in the 38th minute via young striker Lalremsiami.
The 2-0 lead put India in a comfortable position ahead of the fourth quarter. The Indian team remained calm in their approach, played
On 6 April 2019, India will take on Malaysia in the second match at 15.30 hours IST.
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